Dear Friends of the George Santayana Society,

Angus Kerr-Lawson and the prize in his honor

The Angus Kerr-Lawson Prize is offered in tribute to Kerr-Lawson’s outstanding contributions to Santayana scholarship both as longtime editor of Overheard in Seville and as the author of many articles that appeared in our Bulletin and in other publications. Kerr-Lawson was a co-founder of the George Santayana Society. The prize is available to a scholar not more than five years out of graduate school for an essay engaging or rooted in the thought of George Santayana. We encourage you to promote the Angus Kerr-Lawson Prize among graduate students and junior faculty members. Any aspect of Santayana’s thinking may be addressed by authors, including essays that relate his thinking to other figures in the American tradition (and beyond) and to contemporary social, cultural and philosophic concerns. Relevant themes include materialism and naturalism, realism and Platonism, metaphysics and morals, and issues connected to American culture and intellectual history. The winner will receive $300 and be invited to present the winning paper at the Society’s annual Eastern APA meeting in early January. The winning essay will be published in the edition of Overheard in Seville that follows that meeting. This year the winner will be notified in September, 2017. Authors should prepare submissions for blind review (no exposing references to the author within the composition) and send electronically in Word, ODT, or PDF format to: rmrubin@acm.org. The subject line of the email should read: *Kerr-Lawson Prize Submission, [author’s name]*. The deadline for submissions is May 21, 2017.

Shirley Marie Lachs

The first letter in this series, which described the annual meeting, reported that John Lachs was unable to participate in his planned joint session with Herman Saatkamp. Part of the reason is that Shirley Lachs, his wife of nearly five decades and longtime collaborator, died last fall. We wish Professor Lachs well in his time of loss.

Richard M Rubin
President, George Santayana Society


Dear Friends of the George Santayana Society,

At the George Santayana Society’s annual meeting on January 6, 2017 in Baltimore, the members approved annual dues of $15 for a basic members and $30 for a printed version of Overheard in Seville. We are glad to call attention to our recently acquired status as a non-profit (501c3) corporation, which makes dues and donations tax deductible. We have a variety of exciting plans that include bringing speakers from overseas. Donations and dues will be used to support plans and projects that ensure that Santayana will enjoy a prominent place in the profession for years to come. A principal purpose of Society dues and donations is to continue funding the Angus Kerr-Lawson prize (discussed in the third letter in this series), which was started with seed money from the estate of Professor Kerr-Lawson.

The primary means of donating will be through an Internet PayPal connection, where you can use either a credit card or your own PayPal account. We are planning several revisions to the web pages of the Society currently hosted by the Santayana Edition. The donation page will be available there. The new pages should be available in several weeks and we’ll send out a notice when they are ready. Electronic payments will be preferred, but checks may be made to the George Santayana Society and mailed to Diana Heney at Department of Philosophy, Fordham University, 441 E. Fordham Road, Bronx, NY 10458. If you have been accustomed to sending payment to the Santayana Edition in order to receive a printed copy of Overheard in Seville, the Society and the Edition will continue to accept such payments at least for the coming year.

The co-ordination of George Santayana Society fundraising with that of the Santayana Edition is under discussion.

Richard M Rubin
President, George Santayana Society



Dear Friends of the George Santayana Society,

Overhead in Seville: the Bulletin of George Santayana Society has published every fall since 1983. This year’s issue will mark thirty five years of publication. We also encourage the submission of articles and other works for both this year (2017) and next (2018). Critical and historical essays on Santayana’s life and works are of course always welcome. We also encourage short feuilleton-style pieces that suggest an idea or tell an anecdote of Santayana’s life or that of his contemporaries, antecedents, or followers. We will entertain creative pieces that use Santayana’s life or work as a starting point. We are also looking for original philosophic inquiry that is based on some theme important in Santayana’s work. In that vein, we are looking to promote lectures and essays on the relationship between metaphysics and politics.

Whether you have a developed work that has not yet seen the light of print or an idea that is only in the early stages, please call or write me. The deadline for new material for this year is March 1, 2017. If you have trouble with that deadline, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me.

All submissions will receive conscientious peer review and editing.  Please see the Submission Guidelines for more information.

Richard M Rubin
President, George Santayana Society

 


Dear Friends of the George Santayana Society,

Greetings for 2017!

This is the first of a series of letters about the George Santayana Society, its activities, and Santayana related events. Followup letters will come out over the course of the coming week.

Annual meeting

The George Santayana Society’s annual meeting took place on January 6, 2017 in Baltimore in conjunction with the 2017 meeting of the Eastern Division of the APA. The first speaker was Diana Heney, who presented her Kerr-Lawson Prize-winning essay, “Metaethics for Mavericks: Santayana and Nietzsche on False Idols and True Poetry.”

John Lachs, who has supported the efforts of the Society and the Edition from the beginning and has made major contributions to Santayana scholarship, had been scheduled to appear jointly with Herman Saatkamp, but Professor Lachs was unable to be there. We were fortunate to have, in the place of his material presence, a video of an interview that Martin Coleman conducted several years ago, in which Lachs presents his views on Scepticism and Animal Faith and several other works by Santayana. Herman Saatkamp, who was in attendance, followed this video with his presentation, “Is Animal Faith the Death of Philosophy?” We expect to publish the Lachs interview and the Saatkamp and Heney papers next fall in Overheard in Seville.

Herman Saatkamp was the first editor of Overheard in Seville. He was one of the founders of the Society and was the Founding Editor of the Santayana Edition. The Edition, which produces critical editions of Santayana’s writings, is now at Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis. Dr Saatkamp, having retired as President of Stockton University in New Jersey, is now a researcher at the IUPUI Institute for American Thought. We are grateful to him for participating in our meeting.

Santayana in Kansas City at the APA Central – 2 March 2017

On Thursday, March 2, 2017 at 7:40 pm the George Santayana Society will host two panel discussions in a session at the meeting of the Central Division of the APA. One discussion will be on Santayana’s short work Platonism and the Spiritual Life. The other will be an author-meets-critics discussion of Jessica Wahman’s Narrative Naturalism. The panels are not yet complete. If anyone is interested in participating, please let me know.

The Life of Reason at Harvard – 13 April March 2017

In honor of the enduring significance of Santayana’s work, the Observatory of the Instituto Cervantes at Harvard University will host a roundtable discussion on Santayana’s The Life of Reason on 13 April 2017. We shall keep you informed as we get more information about this event.

New George Santayana Society Officers

The two-year term of Matt Flamm as president of the Society ended with the January meeting in Baltimore. We thank Dr Flamm for his dedication to the Society and for inaugurating the Angus Kerr-Lawson prize (look for another email about the prize). The members at the meeting approved the nominating committee’s recommendations. Michael Brodrick moved from the position of secretary-treasurer to vice president, Diana Heney became the secretary-treasurer, and I am now the president.

Richard M. Rubin
President, George Santayana Society