Bylaws of the Collegium

The purpose of this collegium is to establish a group for those interested in ancient philosophy and a place where philosophical discussion and study may take place. Join at: http://romanrepublic.org/civitas/joint_ ... sophiae/42

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Bylaws of the Collegium

Postby Gaius Florius Lupus » Sat May 13, 2017 5:24 pm

Salvete collegae!

I have noticed that the bylaws of our Collegium are in a deplorable state. They are outdated and in violation of the leges of our Republic.
I tried to contact Magister Cispius Laevus about the issue but was not able yet to reach him. But since the change of the bylaws requires the approval of the majority of our members anyway, I decided to go public with it right away.

In this post I will outline what is wrong with our current bylaws and write my comments to them. Everybody is invited to make suggestions about what changes should be made. Then after one week I will publish a draft for a new set of bylaws and put them to vote. I hope we can have the draft approved or rejected in the following week, so I can send it to the Curule Aedile for final approval and we can get over with this bureaucratic act and focus on philosophical topics.

Here is the current version of our bylaws. I have marked the problematic parts and my comments in red.

Collegium Philosophiae [Philosophicum]
The purpose of this collegium is to establish a group for those interested in ancient philosophy and a place where philosophical discussion and study may take place.

I. Description of how leadership is selected, how long terms are to last, how leadership is to be replaced.
The collegium will be administered by 3 [2] officers who shall be elected for 1 term of 1 year, with no restrictions on term limits. Elections will take place in December of each year to elect a successor for the following January. The officers must be registered citizens of the Roman Republic and have some experience in teaching or studying philosophy with higher education standards and have some knowledge about the different schools of thought.
[This was apparently custom tailored to the person of Cassia Longina and would require an academic degree in philosophy, which probably few of us have.]
The collegium will also have other offices open for election:
a. Scriba - the officers may appoint a scribe to be assigned with the duty of administrative tasks (and financial, if applicable). The appointee must be a registered citizen.
[We have no scriba that I am aware of. This position should be eliminated. Scribae might be appointed, whenever the need arises.]
b. Domina(us) - The group's founder, G. Cassia Longina, shall hold this position for life after the completion of this group and will guide discussions, provide sources, and information to any who wish to ask or be a part of this collegium. The members may contact her at any time and are guaranteed a response. [Other leaders may be added with election or participation in the founding of this group.]
[The title was changed into magister/-ra. An unelected position for lifetime is incompatible with the democratic values of our Republic.]
Registered Roman citizens shall be entitled to the votes for leadership positions. Each member will be entitled to 1 vote. The head positions of the group (domina(us)) shall be allowed to cast a vote in order to break the tie if a tie-vote occurs. Voting in done in any matter that is fair with each citizen holding equal power in the vote. Electronic voting may be conducted online for 7 days - before the final announcement is made. This may be through email, Facebook, messages, or other means.
II. Description of how members of the collegium are removed and what appeals process will be used in these cases.
If a problem arises between members, they are encouraged to work out the issue between themselves. If the members cannot reach an agreement, the entire group will attempt to work out an issue.
III. Good Standing
Members of the collegium must remain in good standing. A member may be removed by:
1. Engaging in actions that would be deemed offensive by other members
[This is insufficient. Anybody may find anything offensive. We need objective standards and have to give everybody the right of a fair trial and to explain his point of view.]
2. Resigning membership
3. The inability to contact the member
4. Posting inappropriate comments or topics
[Too broad. This vague term »inappropriate« can be interpreted to allow expulsion for any reason. We could include that »optime iure« status is required for membership.]
5. Harassing other members or disrespecting the ideas of others
[Disrespecting the ideas of others would include any kind of dissent. We should replace this point with »repeated harassing or insulting other members.«]
IV. Formation & Dissolution
The collegium may be dissolved by a unanimous vote of the members.
V. Meetings
The collegium may hold group meetings, either through messages or video call, as needed and required. Any member in good standing may call a meeting. Members must be notified of a meeting 5 days before the group and stated in the news section of the collegium's forum.
VI. Amendments
These rules may be amended when needed by a three-quarters vote of the members of the collegium. 20 days notice must be given to all members prior to meeting.
VII. Transfer of Denarii
Members of the collegium will fund the group (if applicable) wherein funds are needed for projects, games, etc.
If the dissolution of the group occurs, any remaining accounts will be transferred to the general reserves of the Roman Republic or to another cultural group as decided by the collegium's vote and final say of the officers and domina(us).
Any use of the funds (used by the officers, domina(us)) will be approved of first by the members of the group by a three-quarters vote. Officers will declare their intention of using the funds and call a meeting and vote 3 days before the date of their actions.


While we are at it, we should also change the name of the collegium. While "Collegium Philosophiae" might be formally correct in regard to grammar, it is bad Latin style to use a noun in the genitive instead of an adjective. "Collegium Philosophicum" would be better Latin.
Alternatively we could change it to "Circulus Philosophicus" in order to indicate that it is an open place for discussions, even if somebody is not a formal member of the collegium. Please give me your opinion on the name. If there is no further input I would go for the minor change to "Collegium Philosophicum" and suggest it to the Aedile.

We have also an official website of the collegium that links through an iframe to Cassia Longina's personal website. This needs to be changed too. At the moment I see no further need a website. I would not know what to put there. I suggest we ask the Aedile to eliminate the link entirely until we decide to establish an own website, if the need will ever arise.

I have another suggestion that I would like to propose. We could be the first collegium to have its bylaws in Latin. With the helps of the Latinists among us I could write the draft for our bylaws in Latin. What I would not do is having two parallel versions of Latin and English as our bylaws. It is either... or...
There might be the argument that not everybody understands Latin, but I do not think that we will need these bureaucratic things very often. To have it in Latin would discourage people from discussing bureaucratic issues.

Now let us not waste any more time on this topic and get through with it as quick as possible. In one week I hope I will be able to present a draft based on the suggestions made during the week. Then we can start voting.

Please let us know your opinion!

Optime valete!
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Re: Bylaws of the Collegium

Postby Gaius Curtius Philo » Sat May 13, 2017 6:48 pm

I agree that the official version be in latin, but I believe if we have an English translation it should be also published and stickied in this forum. Even though we might not like to be over beurocratic, not knowing the Rules of an organization is not good. We need to know them so there is no confusion. But I agree that the official version, to appear on the RR website in the list of Collegia, should be in latin.

I also am in favor to the edits you propose. And by the Bylaws of the RR there must also be added a means by which someone can ask for a second judgement (maybe by an aedile?) in case of expulsion.

Might also be interesting to have a mechanism to permit sub groups to form inside the CPhil. For example if we ever have a significant Stoic group they could be able to form a Schola inside our Collegium and organize themselves independently for classes and debates. Just a thought.
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Re: Bylaws of the Collegium

Postby Lucia Horatia Adamas » Sun May 14, 2017 8:29 pm



L. Horatia Adamas C. Florio Lupo C. Curtio Philoni omnibusque S.P.D.

Raptim…mihi obsonatum exeundum'st inter pluvias fortissimas.

I think we can have both Latin and English versions…if the Latinists can spare the time. The name definitely should be changed as it, like that of the Latin group, is very bad Latin.

The section about having a degree in philosophy is overkill. Philosophy is part of any degree in classics, and possibly of those in other fields as well. Isn't reading parts of the works of Plato, Aristotle, and the Pre-Sokratics (plus Lucretius and relevant portions of the Ciceronian corpus) in the original language enough to be able to comment on them? I agree that this should go.

The terms 'dominus' and 'domina,' which some modern Latinists use for 'Mr.' and 'Mrs.,' really mean 'boss.' They are therefore rather offensive as titles for the head of a cultural group. 'Dominus' is Church Latin for God…none of us is at that level. ;-)

One instance of harassment or Sulla / Caesar-like insults should merit a warning at the very least, and more intense action if repeated. Good sense would prevent the likes of pornography, insults to various religions, etc., etc., but some have to be reminded (often forcefully) that these are not appropriate.

Perhaps more later…


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Re: Bylaws of the Collegium

Postby Gaius Florius Lupus » Mon May 15, 2017 5:36 pm

Salvete!
Since the intercessio of Consul Curio revoked the edictum praeturae that instated me as co-leader of the collegium, I have to step down as magister.
We have to wait for the decision of our sole magister Cispius Laevus on how to proceed. Maybe he calls for elections or he will take charge of the change of the bylaws himself.
I am sorry to bother you all with so many administrative issues and hope we can focus on solely philosophical matters soon.
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Re: Bylaws of the Collegium

Postby Gaius Florius Lupus » Tue May 16, 2017 12:11 pm

While the current situation in the collegia is a little bit unclear to say the least, it does not need to stop us working on the bylaws.
The Collegia Latina has written a nice Latin version of their bylaws. Picking up the idea of a template for bylaws as suggested by Laenas, I think we could just take their professionally written bylaws and change them for our needs.
Unfortunately they have beaten us in being the first collegium with Latin bylaws.
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Re: Bylaws of the Collegium

Postby Publius Sextius Laevus » Tue May 16, 2017 1:15 pm

Salve Lupus,

I think that what is being worked out in the Latin Collegium would work with a name change for any academic collegii. I would propose that we common up with what is being completed there. There are a few parts of our proposed bylaws that I have proposed to Seneca to be added to theirs.

By the way, Lupus, why are you not a member of the Latin Collegium?

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Re: Bylaws of the Collegium

Postby Gaius Florius Lupus » Tue May 16, 2017 10:04 pm

Salve Sexti Laeve!
Okay, I have applied. It is good to see thee two collegia working together.
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Re: Bylaws of the Collegium

Postby Lucia Horatia Adamas » Tue May 16, 2017 10:35 pm



L. Horatia Adamas C. Florio Lupo omnibusque S.P.D.

Although I did not receive a copy of the digest today, I have gotten notices about topics I am following…and your application to the Collegium Latinum, which I approved. Glad to see you among the fautores linguæ Latinæ.

Obiter, better Latin is 'edictum prætorium.'

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Re: Bylaws of the Collegium

Postby Gaius Florius Lupus » Wed May 17, 2017 2:01 am

Plurimas gratias tibi pro approbatione, Horatia Adamas!

I also appreciate the correction regarding the "edictum praetorium". We should make it a habit to correct mistakes, when we see them. This is the only way how we can learn something new.
In this case I was aware that "edictum praeturae" sounded awkward. I just used the word because it was how Praetor Cispius Laevus called it officially, when he announced it.

BTW does the title of a magistrate come before or after the name? "Praetor Cispius Laevus" or "Cispius Laevus Praetor"? In inscriptions it is after, but is it also true when referring to someone in normal speech?
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Re: Bylaws of the Collegium

Postby Gaius Curtius Philo » Wed May 17, 2017 2:14 am

Gaius Florius Lupus wrote:Plurimas gratias tibi pro approbatione, Horatia Adamas!

I also appreciate the correction regarding the "edictum praetorium". We should make it a habit to correct mistakes, when we see them. This is the only way how we can learn something new.
In this case I was aware that "edictum praeturae" sounded awkward. I just used the word because it was how Praetor Cispius Laevus called it officially, when he announced it.

BTW does the title of a magistrate come before or after the name? "Praetor Cispius Laevus" or "Cispius Laevus Praetor"? In inscriptions it is after, but is it also true when referring to someone in normal speech?


Classical latin would have it after the name, similar to Old Norse, coincidentily (King Harald was Haraldr Konungr). Tolkien actually mimics that when he calls King Theoden "Theoden King". I have no reason to think that if it was like that in all written sources that speech would be different.

I tend to alternate betweem saying Consul Curio or Curio Consul because in english it is the former even if in latin it is the latter. But proper latin would place it afterwards.
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