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Minutes for Board Meeting - April 2007

Minutes for the ACLA Board Meeting
Friday, 20 April 2007, 8-10 AM

Hotel Colonial
Puebla, Mexico

Present: Armengot, Bermann, Damrosch, Ekhardt, Finney, Fisher, Kadir, Komar, Kristal, Lewis, Martin, Montenegro, Palencio-Roth, Richmond-Garza, Saussy, Trumpener, Yao
Regrets: Beebee, Hanssen, Brodsky Lacour, Lionnet, Prins

The meeting was convened at 8:15 AM.

Initial Comments:
  • Komar opened the meeting with comments about the increase in the size of the ACLA in the last 2-years as a result of the annual conferences success and the good balance of student/faculty in the membership. She also complimented the collaboration of the 2007 conference planners working in liaison in Los Angeles, Houston, Austin, Paris, and Puebla.
  • Announcement of the hosting of the 2009 ACLA annual meeting at Harvard University (Damrosch).
1. Approval of minutes from the 12/28/06 Philadelphia board meeting
2. Brief Financial/Membership Update (Richmond-Garza)
a. Comments on exceptional complexity of this year's conference logistics
b. Secretariat should not be responsible in the future for member travel and accommodations
3. Report of the President (Komar)
a. Announcement of 2007 MLA Sessions and Organizers (posted at
b. Announcement of 2007 ACLA Prize Winners and committee appointments (posted at
c. Discussion of desirability of board members (past and present) serving on prize committees
d. Expression of gratitude to the members of the board, vice president and Secretariat
4. There were items to report from the Vice-President (Bermann)
5. ACLA 2007 Puebla Conference Report (Zamora/Schuessler)
a. Update on: logistical challenges of airport transfer from Mexico City to Puebla; use of a total of 17 small hotels; affirmation of not capping participant numbers at 700 as originally planned; comments on the appeal of the choice of venue.
6. ACLA 2008 Update (Fisher) and discussion of venues for 2009 and beyond
a. ACLA 2008 Conference Report (Fisher):CFP to be distributed to membership at Puebla general membership meeting
i. New CSULB administration support the hosting of the conference
ii. Short list of plenary speakers in place
iii.The Westin Long Beach contract is nearly finalized for meeting rooms and accommodations (rates at $154/$139)
iv. The chamber of commerce is very supportive
v. 1,000-1,200 participants have been projected, but an expansion in numbers could be accommodated
vi. Convenient location for the beach, LAX, and cultural/scholarly resources
vii. Banquet planned for the Queen Mary
viii. Mention of writers who will be in the local area for plenary, Ngugi wa Thiong'o, Wole Soyinka, or Slavoj Zizek
ix. Discussion of the inclusion of a public event as part of conference
x. Confirmation of comparable registration fees to previous years
xi. $10,000 subvention received from CSULB, along with the support for a graduate-student assistant
b. ACLA 2009 Conference Report (Damrosch):
i. To be hosted at Harvard University where Damrosch will be appointed beginning Fall 2008
ii. Harvard have offered a $50,000 subvention as well as the use of their facilities
iii. Accommodations will be in Boston, with shuttles to the Harvard campus
c. Discussion of future years: Nashville in 2010 and Vancouver 20117.
7.  Discussion of nature and scale of duties of Secretariat, especially regarding current central role of the Secretariat in the planning and management of the annual meeting
a. Discussion of the extent of the University of Texas' support for the Secretariat and the challenge for the ACLA in securing such support for future Secretariats
b. Question of possibility of an increase in dues deferred
c. Motion to use ACLA funds (up to $10,000 per year) as a supplement to the salary of the Secretariat staff person (moved by Komar, seconded by Eckhardt; vote was unanimous)
8. Discussion of selection criteria, number and size of travel grants given the large number of applicants from both the US and overseas and from faculty, independent scholars and students
a. Charge to secretary to rework the criteria to include need-based criteria
b. Charge to secretary to communicate more clearly the size and number of the grants to the membership
9. Update from ADPCL (Eckhardt)
a. Comment on the special ADPCL session being held at Puebla on grant-writing by Pauline Yu (president of the ACLS)
b. Announcement of the publication of the ADPCL report on the undergraduate curriculum in Comparative Literature in Profession 2006 to be followed by a companion report of the graduate curriculum (Komar, committee chair)
c. MLA allied status for ADPCL to be considered by MLA in summer 2007
d. MLA has approved one session for the ADPCL at its 2007 conference
10. Update from Student Representatives (Armengot/ Martin)
a. Favorable graduate student response to the Puebla conference so far
b. Expression of thanks to Carole Viers for her work as student assistant to the conference committee
11. Other business: None

The meeting adjourned at 9:59 AM.