|Annual Meeting Submission Guidelines|
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Call for papers and sessions
Call for papers and sessions
The Program Committee for the 64th Annual Meeting of the Renaissance Society of America invites submissions for individual papers or sessions on any aspect of Renaissance studies or the era 1300–1700. Because RSA is a multidisciplinary society, it especially welcomes submissions that cross traditional disciplinary boundaries, as well as those that spotlight scholarship that is discipline-specific. Sessions sponsored by our Associate Organizations and Discipline Representatives will make up part of the program. The rest will consist of sessions and individual papers proposed by RSA members and selected by the Program Committee.
Anyone who wishes to submit a proposal for a session or an individual paper on a topic from before 1300 or after 1700 must provide a short rationale for review by the Program Committee. To do so, please use this form.
Because the RSA Annual Meeting is a large conference, with as many as fifty sessions meeting concurrently, we have developed guidelines over the years, which greatly facilitate the work of the Program Committee and help ensure that there will be an audience for every session. Please note that proposing a session or a paper indicates your commitment to attend. The Committee will not be able to accept every submission. Good papers will have to be turned away. To take a slot and then later withdraw is discourteous to colleagues who would have liked to present a paper. Once the rooms are scheduled and the a-v equipment ordered, no substitutions are possible.
Organizers may propose a series of linked sessions, up to a limit of five. However, the Program Committee prefers that series be limited to three, to facilitate scheduling them in a row. Sessions organized in honor or in memory of an individual scholar are limited to no more than two per honoree.
Proposals for roundtables are also welcome but the Committee asks that roundtables be stand-alone sessions in terms of their content. Roundtables that merely involve recapping the content of a series of sessions take up valuable space in the program that could be used to present other research and are not likely to be accepted.
Submission deadline for all proposals: Wednesday, 7 June 2017 at 11:59 p.m. (U.S. Eastern Daylight Time).
How to organize sessions: Members are invited to post their own calls for papers and participants on our CFP blogs to aid in the organization of sessions. You may also use the discipline group pages on this site to communicate with others in your discipline.
Who may apply to present at an RSA conference: You do not need to be an RSA member to submit a proposal for the 2018 New Orleans conference, but all accepted participants must become RSA members for 2018 and register for the conference. More about membership requirements and applying as a nonmember.
RSA welcomes graduate student speakers who are within one or two years of defending their dissertations. However, all sessions must include at least one speaker who has received the PhD or other terminal degree. Sessions composed entirely of predoctoral speakers and sessions that include precandidates or MA students will not be considered. Predoctoral speakers should present dissertation research, not term papers. Their CVs must include the dissertation title and expected date of completion to make their eligibility clear to the Program Committee.
Funding: Participants and attendees, or their sponsoring organization, must fund their own travel and lodging expenses as well as the annual membership dues and conference registration fee. The registration fee pays for conference facilities, audio-visual expenses, electronic and printed program materials, and a portion of the staffing needed to produce the conference. A limited number of grants to support paper presenters traveling from outside of North America are available to scholars in all disciplines by separate application. Please see the conference travel grants section of this page for more information.
Who may submit sessions or individual papers? How many may be submitted?
An individual may submit one paper for consideration. That one paper may be submitted as part of an individual paper proposal or as part of a panel. Individuals who submit more than one paper proposal (or the same paper multiple times) will be asked to withdraw all but one of them before the submissions are reviewed by the Program Committee.
An individual may present a paper in a panel and also participate as a discussant in a roundtable session, may chair up to three sessions, and may also serve once as a panel respondent.
An individual organizer may submit up to five sessions. Series of sessions in honor of or in memory of an individual scholar are limited to two sessions per honoree.
Here is a summary of the number of submissions permitted depending on your role:
What’s in a proposal?
Individual paper proposal:
Each paper presenter will submit:
Other guidelines for submissions
An individual may not serve as chair or respondent in a panel in which he or she is a paper presenter.
Here is the maximum number of times an individual may serve in each role at an annual meeting.
An individual may serve as organizer, chair, and respondent of the same panel.
Here are the requirements and limits for sessions roles.
Linked sessions and series of sessions
Concatenated sessions on a single theme are allowed, normally in sequences of two or three sessions, but with a maximum of five. Series of sessions in honor of or in memory of an individual scholar are limited to two sessions per honoree. These limits ensure that participants may attend the meeting as a whole and not merely a conference within the conference. Many members will be able to attend only one session in a chain, so each session must have its own integrity. To conclude a series of sessions with a roundtable that relates back to the previous sessions may work well for a small conference, but is not suitable for RSA. Such sessions are unlikely to be accepted, even if submitted as a sponsored session.
A series of sessions organized around a theme should be submitted as separate sessions with numbered titles. For example: to submit nine papers on the theme of Michelangelo in Florence, submit three sessions of three papers each, each with its own chair. Name them according to the following scheme: Michelangelo in Florence I, Michelangelo in Florence II, Michelangelo in Florence III. This will ensure that they are reviewed and scheduled as a series, one following the next.
RSA encourages presenters to submit their abstracts and give their talks in English when possible, in order to ensure the broadest potential audience for the work being presented. Papers may be given in other languages as appropriate. We expect that papers will be delivered in the language in which the abstract is submitted.
Sponsored sessions: Associate Organizations and Discipline Representatives
If you are an RSA Discipline Representative or Associate Organization Representative, you have been authorized to submit sponsored sessions through a separate application link on the main submission page: look for the Discipline Representative / Associate Organization link. This application will allow you to submit sessions for your organization or discipline, and will ensure that your sessions are identified with the proper sponsorship. Discipline Representatives are allotted up to five sponsored sessions, while Associate Organization Representatives are allotted up to three.
No matter who actually organizes the sessions for your organization or discipline, only the official RSA representative may submit them; the submission software will only recognize that person’s RSA login. If you are unable to submit in this module and believe you are authorized to do so, please contact RSA for assistance; do not submit sponsored sessions in the general submission module. Your membership must be current in order to submit sponsored sessions.
Sessions may be cosponsored by more than one Associate Organization or Discipline Representative. A cosponsored session counts toward the five- or three-session limit for both sponsoring groups. To submit a cosponsored session, one of the sponsors should submit the session in their sponsorship area using the Discipline Representative / Associate Organization link. The cosponsorship has to be applied by an administrator: when the session has been submitted and before the submission deadline, please send an email to email@example.com to request cosponsorship, indicating the name of the session, the sponsor that submitted it, and the name of the cosponsoring group. Both sponsors will be listed in the online and print programs.
Sessions sponsored by Associate Organizations and Discipline Representatives will be reviewed by the Program Committee to ensure that they comply with RSA guidelines. Most paper presenters in sponsored sessions should be members of the sponsoring organization or discipline group.
Members may post calls for papers on our CFP blogs: there are separate blogs for art history, history, literature, and interdisciplinary/other; you may cross-post to as many of them as you wish.Art History CFPs
CFP and session submission guidelines and etiquette
If you organize a session, you are responsible for submitting it to RSA by the submission deadline.
If you respond to an individual’s call for papers, please remember that your paper is submitted only when your organizer submits the full session online.
Session organizers are asked to inform individuals before the submission deadline if they are accepting their papers or not. Only the organizer who submits the session receives a confirmation notice of submission. Paper authors do not receive a notice until a decision has been made by the Program Committee later in the summer.
Papers submitted as part of a session should not be submitted again separately as an individual paper submission.
If you are not an RSA member, you will need to sign up in our database with a temporary Conference Submitter account before submitting a proposal. If your paper is being submitted by a session organizer and you are not an RSA member, please sign up for a Conference Submitter membership before the organizer submits the session. If your membership is expired you can be added to a session without a Conference Submitter account.
All people submitting proposals and participating in sessions must be in our membership database. The method for being recorded in our database depends on one’s RSA membership status.
If you've never been a member, but wish to join now
You are welcome to join RSA by following this link and completing the sign-up and dues payment process. RSA memberships run according to the calendar year plus a two-week grace period, so your membership will expire on 14 January 2018. If your proposal is accepted by the Program Committee, you will need to be a 2018 member of RSA and register for the conference.
If you've never been a member, but wish to create a free, temporary account for now
Should you prefer not to join RSA when submitting your proposal, you must sign up as a Conference Submitter so that your contact information is recorded in our database. “Conference Submitter” is a temporary administrative record created for conference submission purposes only. It has no charge and confers no membership privileges. If your proposal is accepted by the Program Committee, you will need to sign into your Conference Submitter account in order to become a 2018 dues-paying member of RSA and register for the conference.
If you were a member of RSA in the past, but your membership has expired
If you used to be a member of RSA and your membership has expired, please do not sign up as a Conference Submitter, as this will result in a duplicate account; instead, if you are having difficulties with your submission, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance. Expired members may be added to a submission that is being proposed by someone else, but they will not be able to make a submission without contacting the RSA office. If your proposal is accepted by the Program Committee, you will need to become a 2018 member of RSA and register for the conference.
If you're a current member of RSA
If you're a current member of RSA, please do not sign up as a Conference Submitter, as this will result in a duplicate account; instead, please contact email@example.com for assistance. If your proposal is accepted by the Program Committee, you will need to become a 2018 member of RSA and register for the conference.
If a member of your proposed session isn’t in our database
All members of your session must be in our membership database in some way. When you submit your proposed session, you will be asked to select the session participants from a list of the names in our database; that list includes current members, expired members, and Conference Submitters. If a participant is not in our database, you will have the opportunity to add the person. Please make sure you have searched correctly for that person’s last name, including any accent marks and being mindful of hyphenated last names or other features. By adding a name, you are signing up that person as a Conference Submitter, and that person should not sign up again later. You will need the person’s name, email address, and affiliation. Please be sure the email address is valid, or your session participants will fail to receive important communications from RSA about conference acceptance and registration.
Acceptance to the conference is a commitment to attend. To withdraw after the registration deadline, except in cases of emergency, is discourteous to your colleagues and to all those whose papers were not accepted for lack of space. If you cannot attend, your paper may not be read by someone else, and you will not be listed in the program. Speakers who fail to register and fail to show up at the conference to give their papers will be barred from speaking at the next year’s conference.
If you must cancel your attendance at the RSA annual meeting due to an emergency and wish to request a refund, the following rules apply:
There are no refunds on RSA membership dues.
A partial refund of the conference registration fee may be available, under limited circumstances.
If you submit a refund request on or before 31 December 2017, you will be refunded 50 percent of your registration fee, minus a $25 administrative fee.
No refunds will be issued for requests sent on or after 1 January 2018.
Exceptions for serious medical and family emergencies will be considered on a case-by-case basis by the RSA Executive Director, President, and Vice President, upon receipt of an explanation. In such cases, if a refund is granted, a $25 administrative fee will be assessed.
Conference travel grants
Grant Opportunities for RSA 2018 New Orleans blog. Share and browse grant opportunities for the New Orleans conference from RSA and other organizations.
RSA Conference Travel Grants
RSA will offer a limited number of travel grants to assist speakers who will be traveling to New Orleans from outside North America. These grants are competitive, not guaranteed; the average award is $500. Funding comes from the Samuel H. Kress Foundation and the Renaissance Society of America General Fund.
How to apply for grants
The submission deadline will be 7 June 2017 at 11:59 p.m. (U.S. Eastern Daylight Time). Late submissions are not accepted.Grants decisions will be announced in September 2017.
Kress travel grants eligibility
RSA travel grants eligibility
RSA conference terminology
Paper: academic conference shorthand for paper presentation, the most common way of sharing one’s research in RSA sessions. Most papers are no more than twenty minutes in length and are drawn from about eight to ten pages of double-spaced text. Papers often include images and text shared with the audience via a (speaker-provided) laptop and (RSA-provided) digital projector, although some presenters prefer to provide hardcopy handouts or speak without visual aids.
Session: a ninety-minute panel of three paper presentations or a roundtable discussion. Session is used to refer to either format.
Panel: a ninety-minute session in which scholars present their research individually (or as co-authors); those presentations of individual research are called papers. Most panels are composed of three twenty-minute papers. This leaves time for formal responses or for questions from the audience. Each panel must have a chair who is not giving a paper in the session; a respondent is optional.
Roundtable: a ninety-minute session in which discussants talk about the roundtable’s topic, guided by a chair who stands outside the discussion and moderates it. Roundtable discussants may have some prepared remarks, but they typically do not give long individual presentations since the conversation tends to be more informal.
Organizer: the person or people assembling the session proposal. Usually this person also submits the session, though it is possible for an individual to submit a session on behalf of someone else who has organized it. Unlike some other conferences, RSA organizers do not automatically serve as chairs of the sessions they organize, but are welcome to register themselves to do so.
Chair: a scholar who stands outside of the main discussion to introduce speakers, moderate the discussion, and ensure that time limits are respected.
Panelist/Speaker/Author: a scholar presenting a paper as part of a panel.
Respondent: a scholar who provides formal remarks in response to the papers presented in a panel.
Discussant: a scholar who contributes to a roundtable discussion.
Conference Submitter: a temporary administrative account created for conference submission purposes only. It has no fee and confers no membership privileges.
Costs of participating in the 2018 RSA conferenceAll participants in the 2018 RSA New Orleans program must pay 2018 membership dues and the registration fee.
2018 Membership Dues