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ARTICLE I: Name and Languages

Section 1. The name of this organization shall be the International Marie de France Society (IMFS).

Section 2. The official languages of the IMFS shall be English and French.


The mission of the International Marie de France Society shall be to establish friendly and productive exchanges between those persons—faculty, independent scholars, students, or others—who are interested in Marie de France and the anonymous lays. It shall publish Le Cygne, a refereed journal which reflects the interest of all members of the Society.

ARTICLE III: Membership

Section 1. Membership in the Society shall be open to any person upon payment of one or more year’s dues as established by the Executive Committee. Any member whose dues are in arrears for more than one year shall be dropped from the membership roll. Former members may be reinstated at any time by the payment in advance of one year’s dues. Only members in good standing shall have the right to vote, present papers at sessions organized by the IMFS, or publish in Le Cygne .

Section 2. There shall be four categories of membership: regular members, student members, emeritus members, and institutional members.

a. Regular members. Any person interested in the works of Marie de France and the anonymous lays.

b. Student members. Graduate students engaged in courses of study leading to degrees in a related field (provided that they do not hold full-time teaching positions), and undergraduate students with a recommendation from a faculty member.

c. Emeritus members. Regular members who have retired from teaching may upon request be transferred to Emeritus Membership, provided that they have been active members for a minimum of three consecutive years and are still members at the time of application for such status. Emeritus members pay the same dues as student members.

d. Institutional members. Libraries, scholarly organizations, and other institutions that subscribe to Le Cygne shall be considered non-voting members.

ARTICLE IV: Executive and Advisory Committees

Section 1.

a. Executive Committee. The officers of the Society shall be: President, Vice President, Secretary-Treasurer, Immediate Past President, and a Graduate Student Representative. The elected officers serve for a term of four years. After the first two years, the Vice President shall become President, and the incumbent shall become the Immediate Past President. The Immediate Past President shall assist the Executive Committee for two years following his or her term as President. The Graduate Student Representation will serve a three-year term; a change in status from graduate student will not affect the term.

b. Advisory Committee. Composed of the Editor-in-Chief of Le Cygne, the Webmaster, the List-Owner and a minimum of three Editorial Readers. The readers shall be elected to serve staggered terms. One member shall be elected each year for a term of three years. Editorial Readers shall be individuals whose primary professional or scholarly activities are in fields related to Marie de France studies. They shall be selected by the Executive Committee and shall be known as the “Editorial Board.”

Section 2.

a. Terms. Only members in good standing for the last three years or more shall have the right to hold office, or serve on committees of the Society. No member shall hold more than one elected office at a time. No member shall serve more than one term consecutively in any office except the Editor-in-chief, who shall be appointed by the Executive Committee for no more than two consecutive terms of three years, and the Secretary-Treasurer and the Webmaster and the List-Owner who shall be re-eligible annually.

b. Election of Officers. Nominations must be made in writing and addressed to the Secretary-Treasurer (by regular mail, e-mail or fax). A nominating committee composed of the Immediate Past President and three active members designated by the Executive Committee will compile a list of candidates. The officers of both committees shall be elected by the members of the organization through a mail ballot (regular or e-mail). The officers’ term will begin on the date of the official announcement of their election at the Society annual meeting. A vacancy in any office may be filled by a majority vote of the Executive Committee for the unexpired portion of the term.

c. Compensations of Officers or Committee Members. Officers and committee members shall serve without salary or other financial compensation. Reimbursement for actual expenses of mailing, preparation of promotional material or other matters relevant to the advancement of the Society’s mission shall be determined by the Executive Committee on a case by case basis.

ARTICLE V: Duties of the Officers

A. President. Shall be the official representative of the Society to the public at large. Shall be responsible for the administration of the Society. He or she shall seek to increase membership, keep the members of the Society posted on progress and needs, and propose new activities which might promote the interests of the Society. The President shall call and chair the annual meeting and organize the sessions at the International Congress on Medieval Studies held in Kalamazoo, Michigan, each year.

B. Vice President. Shall be in charge of public relations. Shall organize sessions at other appropriate professional conferences and the annual meeting and reception. Shall assist the President in his/her functions and temporarily assume them, including presiding at meetings, when circumstances prevent the President from doing so.

C. Immediate Past President. Shall serve as chair of the Nominating Committee and shall assist the President in any matters deemed useful for the Society.

D. Secretary-Treasurer. Shall perform all those duties usually associated with this office:

(1) Shall keep an accurate list of members in good standing (new members, renewals, changes of addresses, etc.). Shall be responsible for calling for and banking annual dues.

(2) Shall gather the necessary material (resumes, etc.) for elections of officers and members, prepare and mail ballots, and submit promptly to the Executive Committee the results of elections. The report should include the names, mailing addresses and e-mail addresses of the newly elected officers.

(3) Shall keep the records of the Society and take charge of its finances:

a) Maintain adequate and correct books of account showing receipts and disbursements, cash on hand and other assets.

b) Deposit all monies with such depositories as are approved by the Executive Committee, and not pay expenses without prior specific approval of the President.

c) Forward the requisite payments for the publication of Le Cygne, and other promotional activities, and supply mailing labels to the editor.

d) Submit a written statement of the financial status of the Society at the annual meeting.

E. Editor-in-chief. Shall be responsible for the writing, printing, binding, and mailing of annual issues of Le Cygne, which includes a call for papers. Shall contact the Library of Congress to register new issues of Le Cygne. Shall mail two copies of each issue of Le Cygne to the MLA for articles to be indexed in the Directory of Periodicals. The Editor-in-chief will be assisted by the Editorial Board.

ARTICLE VI: Annual Meeting

Section 1. The organization shall hold an annual meeting in May, at the International Congress on Medieval Studies (Kalamazoo, Michigan).

Section 2. That meeting shall receive the reports of the officers and deal with business that comes properly before it by majority vote of all members present and in good standing.

Section 3. The annual meeting may be cancelled or displaced for emergency reasons by vote of the Executive Committee. If an annual meeting is cancelled, the elected officers and the members of the Executive Committee shall continue to serve until such time as an election by mail or e-mail ballot can be held.

Section 4. One-tenth or ten of the Society’s members in good standing, whichever number is smaller, shall constitute a quorum for the conduct of business. Except where otherwise required by the Executive Committee, a majority of the votes cast will be required to take action.

ARTICLE VII: Fiscal year

The fiscal year and membership year shall run from 1 June to 31 May.

ARTICLE VIII: Business Operations

Section 1. The President and the Secretary-Treasurer have the authority to open checking and saving accounts as deemed appropriate, and to invest Society income in interest-bearing accounts. They do not have the authority to invest in the stock market or in any speculative enterprise.

Section 2. The President and the Secretary-Treasurer shall have the authority to sign checks or make cash deposits or withdrawals in the account of the Society. The President is empowered to assume the duties of the Secretary-Treasurer should he/she be unable to perform the duties of the office.

Section 3. The President and the Secretary-Treasurer have the authority to assess dues subject to the approval of a majority of the members attending the subsequent annual meeting.

ARTICLE IX: Amendments

The Executive Committee may proposed amendments to these By-Laws and shall receive proposed amendments to these By-Laws by members of the Society. All amendments proposed other than by the Executive Committee must bear the signatures of at least ten members in good standing and be received by the Secretary-Treasurer in advance of the annual meeting. Amendments must be approved by a majority vote of the Executive Committee and ratified by a majority vote of members in good standing responding to a mail or e-mail ballot.

ARTICLE X: Dissolution

Section 1. The organization shall be dissolved by a mail vote of two-thirds of the members in good standing after the matter has been moved and discussed at the Business Meeting of two consecutive annual meetings.

Section 2. Upon the dissolution of the Society, the Executive Committee shall, after paying or making provisions for the payment of any liability, in accord with the purposes of the Society, dispose of all remaining assets exclusively in favor of an educational organization supporting research on the works of Marie de France.

ARTICLE XI: Society’s Logo

The Society officially adopted a new logo in May 2011. The society retains all copyrights to the new logo in perpetuity. The logo may be used solely for official purposes of the Society.

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