November 2020 Newsletter

First, let me extend my warmest greeting to everyone. I hope you have been able to stay well and grounded in these uncertain times. I write to you from the unceded territories of the Sylix people here in the beautiful Okanagan Valley, where we have been lucky enough to escape the worst of Covid, so far.

I very much hope that we will meet again in person next fall, in Winnipeg, and that we will conduct our business affairs as usual at the Annual General Meeting. This year, the Executive met on Oct. 19th to discuss several items of business.

I'm happy to report that we remain in good shape, financially. The Executive has voted to increase membership dues for Full-Time and Tenure-Track faculty from $70 to $100, starting next year, so that CSECS can cover the full costs of graduate student funding at our annual meeting, a cost that is currently shared by conference hosts. We also voted to extend the membership waiver to graduate students and non-FT/TT faculty into 2021. I encourage everyone to update their 2020 membership, if you haven't already.

The Graduate Student Caucus has chosen Nour Afara to serve as their representative on the Executive for the next three years; welcome, Nour!

We also have a new President, Joel Castonguay-Belanger, and a new Webmaster, Nelson Guilbert, joining the Executive. Normally these names would be presented to the membership at the AGM and we would vote to welcome them on board. In the absence of that process, I will consider them acclaimed unless the membership objects. Joel will begin his tenure as President on July 1, 2021.

Nelson is going to be busy immediately, as the Executive has tasked him with building a new website for CSECS. The goal is to create a user-friendly site that can be maintained by any member. Allison Muri has maintained our current site for many years, and we thank her warmly for her service.

We have more prizes to announce. Lumen's Mark Madoff Prize was awarded to Jérémie Leclerc, for his essay, "'Wise Passiveness' - Wordsworth, Spinoza, and the Ethic of Passivity"; Lumen's second award, for the journal's best essay (a prize we will name at next year's meeting), was awarded to Carole Dornier, for her essay, «Désir de distinction et dynamique sociale chez l'abbé de Saint-Pierre».

And, finally, we have a new honorary member to celebrate. For his service to CSECS and his contributions to the field of eighteenth-century studies, we add Sante Viselli to the list of the society's Honorary Members. Congratulations, Sante!

Wishing you all the best in the busy last weeks of term,

Alison Conway