2020/21 Newsletter

LSNA Essay Contest

  • 2020 Leibniz Society Essay Competition: The winner of the 2020 essay competition is Fiorenza Manzo (Milano) for the essay “How sincere was Leibniz’s criticism of Hobbes’s political thought?” Congratulations!
  • Thirty-ninth annual competition (2021): In an effort to encourage the study of the philosophy of Leibniz in North America and to give recognition to deserving scholars, the Leibniz Society of North America (LSNA) is continuing its annual Essay Competition. Submitted essays should be on some aspect of the philosophy of Leibniz (including his reception and his various correspondences). They should be from twelve to twenty-five pages in length (double-spaced), and should be submitted by July 1, 2021. The author of the winning essay will have the option of publishing it in the Leibniz Review. To facilitate anonymous judging, the author’s name should be given only on a separate title page or cover sheet and should not appear in the body or footnotes of the paper; neither should identifiable information such as full references to publications by the author. Judges reserve the right not to name a winner in the event that none of the submissions is deemed to be of sufficient quality or suitability for the award. Full scholarly apparatus is preferred but not required; sufficiently developed works-in-progress will, therefore, have a chance in the competition and may be submitted. Previous one-time winners are encouraged to re-enter, but a given person can win the competition at most twice. Essays may be submitted in English or French.  Please send submissions by email attachment (Word or pdf format) to the Coordinator of the LSNA Essay Competition: Prof. John Whipple, Department of Philosophy, University of Illinois at Chicago: jwhipple@uic.edu

Fifteenth Annual Conference of the Leibniz Society of North America

The Fifteenth Annual Conference of the Leibniz Society of North America will be hosted by Brandon Look (University of Kentucky) and conducted virtually.  As with the Fourteenth Annual Conference, sessions will be held on a series of Saturdays beginning November 6, 2021.

Papers on any aspect of Leibniz’s philosophy will be considered and should have a reading time of approximately 45 minutes. Submissions should take the form of abstracts of about 500 words, prepared for blind review. They should be submitted, as attachments to emails in either Microsoft Word or PDF format, to look@uky.edu.  The deadline for the receipt of submissions is May 15, 2021. There will be commentators on the papers that are selected for the conference.  Presenters will be asked to provide a draft of their paper to their commentator by September 15th.

Minutes of Business Meeting, virtual LSNA conference, February 27, 2021

President Brandon Look opens the meeting and makes the following announcements:

There were no further nominations for executive committee positions. The election will occur electronically in the next week.

Summer workshop for graduate students: the LSNA is exploring options for organizing such a summer workshop for graduate students, maybe for summer 2022, and maybe virtually. In order to reach graduate students working on Leibniz for this workshop and also for other purposes, the LSNA is working on compiling a database of graduate students and early career philosophers worldwide whose research is about Leibniz.

Future meetings:

  • The 2021/22 LSNA meeting was originally supposed to be at Harvard, hosted by Jeffrey McDonough. However, we probably cannot meet in person in 2021/22 because of the pandemic, and it would be nice for the Harvard conference to be in person. Thus, Brandon Look offered to organize a virtual meeting in 2021/22 instead, so that Jeff McDonough can host an in-person meeting in 2023/24.
  • The 2022/23 conference would still be in Princeton, organized by Dan Garber
  • For 2024/25, we might try to organize another joint conference with the francophone Leibniz Society

Financial report from Glenn Hartz, editor of Leibniz Review: the Leibniz review is in good financial shape; there is enough to publish about 6–7 issues. The main costs are software, a computer, etc. The PDC could in future do these things for a fee, if need be.

President Brandon Look closes the meeting

Results of LSNA Board Election:

  • Jeff McDonough has been elected Vice-President for a term (2020-2024)
  • Julia Jorati has been elected Treasurer/Secretary for a second term (2020-2024)
  • Larry Jorgensen and Julia Borcherding have been elected members of the Executive Committee for a term (2020-2024)