During the 2015–16 academic year the MLA’s Connected Academics project will offer twenty language and literature doctoral candidates and recent PhD recipients in the New York City area an opportunity to participate in a proseminar dedicated to exploring multiple career options. Participants will learn how to use their teaching and research experience in a wide range of employment contexts and will develop skills that will be valuable in any career. They’ll also get a behind-the-scenes look at organizations that employ humanities PhDs and conduct informational interviews with humanities PhDs working in a variety of careers. Proseminar participants will receive a $2,000 stipend. Successful applicants must either hold a PhD or be a doctoral candidate in language or literature and must be able to travel to New York City monthly. Applications are due by 15 June 2015. For more information or to apply, please visit the Connected Academics site on MLA Commons.
The MLA Publications Committee seeks to develop several new titles in Korean for the MLA Texts and Translations series and has appointed an editorial board of specialists in Korean for 2014–17. If you teach Korean texts or translations, the board would like your feedback about the materials you use. We hope you’ll take a few minutes to complete a three-question survey on the office of scholarly communication Web site, where you’ll also find information about how to propose a title for the series.
The MLA is pleased to announce the beta launch of CORE, the Commons Open Repository Exchange, on MLA Commons. Developed in collaboration with Columbia University Libraries/Information Services’ Center for Digital Research and Scholarship (CDRS), CORE allows MLA members to deposit their published articles, essay drafts, dissertations, data sets, syllabi, photographs, and other works in a library-quality repository to maximize the discoverability of their scholarship. When you upload a file to the repository, you can choose a Creative Commons license, get a DOI, and share your work with any of your MLA forum groups. Click on the CORE tab at the top of the MLA Commons home page to explore the new repository or read more about the project.
Responding to recent incidents of harassment of writers and scholars, this month the MLA Executive Council issued a statement condemning censorship of work treating controversial subjects and threats against the authors of such work. The council action reaffirms the association’s long-standing commitment to academic freedom and freedom of speech.
Connected Academics, a multiyear project of the MLA, Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and several academic partners, has launched a new site on the Commons. The project, which will run through August 2019, aims to increase awareness of the variety of careers available to PhDs in the humanities and to help doctoral programs support students’ exploration of these career options. The Connected Academics site features resources, practical advice, and regular project updates; informational interviews and professional-development materials are coming soon. We encourage you to check the site often for new posts and to leave a comment on the site if you have a resource to suggest or something you would like to see featured.
MLA Commons has just launched updates that we hope will enhance your use of the network. These include synchronizing basic information you entered on the MLA Web site (including your name, institution, and title) with your Commons account. You can also now invite any Commons member—not only your contacts—to join your groups. And the look of the MLA’s sites, including News from the MLA, From the President, and From the Executive Director, has been redesigned. Read more about the changes on our Updates site.
The MLA Committee on Honors and Awards invites authors to compete for the association’s Aldo and Jeanne Scaglione Publication Award for a Manuscript in Italian Literary Studies. The prize, which has a 1 June deadline, is open to manuscripts that have been accepted for publication by not-for-profit presses that are members of the Association of American University Presses and to manuscripts that have not yet been accepted for publication. Detailed information is available online. You may also request information on any MLA prize by contacting the office of programs (email@example.com).
Only three weeks remain for MLA members to cast their votes on the constitutional amendments approved by the Delegate Assembly at its January 2015 meeting. Final adoption of the amendments depends on the vote of the membership via the online ballot that is now available in the members-only area of the MLA Web site. The deadline for voting is midnight (EDT) on Friday, 15 May. All members in good standing as of 7 April are strongly encouraged to vote.
MLA members are invited to suggest candidates to serve as editor of PMLA. The term of the current editor, Simon Gikandi, ends in June 2016. The Executive Council subcommittee leading the search is seeking candidates who possess
- A wide range of intellectual interests, including a commitment to a variety of scholarly approaches and an understanding of more than one language
- An awareness of contemporary literary scholarship and critical methods and an openness to new technologies and methodologies
- An ability to work within the structure of the MLA and PMLA, including a commitment to the principles guiding current editorial policy and a recognition of the journal as the organ of a large membership organization reflecting diverse scholarly and critical views
- Past experience with PMLA (as author, referee, Advisory Committee member, or Editorial Board member) or substantial editorial experience with another scholarly journal in the field
To suggest a candidate to the subcommittee, please write to Judy Goulding by 15 July 2015.
In December the MLA sent a letter to Terry McAuliffe, the governor of Virginia, to express concern about an executive order requiring certain faculty members at state universities to make public detailed statements of their economic interests. The MLA Executive Council affirmed the importance of public disclosure for “employees with independent budgetary and policy-making authority” but asserted that those who chair academic departments or direct programs “have little discretion over decisions that could lead to the practices the new requirements are designed to prevent” and that they should therefore be exempt from the disclosure requirements. The MLA is gratified that a new Virginia General Assembly ethics bill, which will go into effect in July, exempts chairs from having to file these disclosure forms.