This research association came into being following two conferences in the early 1990’s: the first in Antwerp in 1990 and the second in Sofa in 1992. The proceedings of these meetings appeared as two important volumes, European Shakespeares: Translating Shakespeare in the Romantic Age (1992) and Shakespeare in the New Europe (1994). At a meeting of the Steering Committee held in Murcia in 1998 it was decided to hold regular conferences and form a research network. Since then a series of biennial conferences has been held: at Murcia (1999), Basel (2001), Utrecht (2003), Krakow (2005), Iasi (2007) and Pisa (2009). Members of the group have formed localized teams to research the presence of Shakespeare in both national and European cultures. A further meeting of the Steering Committee was held in Murcia in 2006 at which this constitution was drafted and provisionally ratified.
The provisional seat of ESRA is in Murcia.
The aims of ESRA are to conduct research into Shakespeare as a cultural presence in Europe and the relationship between the institution of Shakespeare and the construction of European culture and identity.
4. Objetives and activities
The Association endeavours
- To foster research networks and projects
- To arrange conferences and academic meetings
- To promote publications on the subject, academic programmes, and exchanges
- To keep its members informed of developments in its field of studies and maintain a website.
Participation is open to everybody who registers an interest in the aims of the Association.
The governing body of the Association shall be its General Meeting. It shall decide on all matters that have not been entrusted to other bodies or members of the Association. An Executive Committee, comprising a Chair, two Vice-Chairs (one acting as Project Officer and the other as Conference Adviser), a Secretary and a Treasurer shall co-ordinate the activities of the Association. This Committee may co-opt up to three other members. The tenure of Committee officers will be for four years, renewable for one further period. The Committee meets as often as business requires. A meeting has to be called if one third of its members demand one.
The Association’s Academic and Advisory Board shall consist of the Chair of the Executive Committee and up to fifteen co-opted members.
7. Meetings and reports
The Executive Committee shall convene a General Meeting at least once every second year in a place convenient to its members. It shall deliver a report on its activities to the General Meeting. Any member of the Association may demand an Extraordinary General Meeting by informing the Chair of the Executive Committee. The Chair shall then ascertain whether this is supported by one quarter of the members and, if so, convene an Extraordinary General Meeting. This must be held at a mutually convenient location and time, within four months of the members of the Association being informed of the request.
8. Financial arrangements
For the time being, members shall pay no fees to the Association. The Association is, however, free to seek out other sources of income. The Association is liable for its debts with its own assets. Personal liability of members is excluded.
The Secretary/Treasurer shall present to the General Meeting an account of all financial transactions carried out in the Association 's name. The account will be audited by at least two auditors elected by the general meeting.
As a financial entity ESRA is an association (Verein) conformable to articles 60.ff of the Swiss Civil Code (ZGB).
Amendment to this constitution shall require the assent of two-thirds of the members present at a general meeting. A resolution for the amendment of the constitution must be received by the Secretary/Treasurer at least three months before the meeting, who must then circulate the resolution to members with the invitation.
The Association may be dissolved by a resolution passed by a two-thirds majority of those present at a General Meeting convened for the purpose. The resolution to dissolve the Association will give instructions for the disposal of its assets.