The Constitution of Acta Victoriana
(Written by Carl Christian Abrahamsen and Eleanor Lazarnova, 2017-2018; amended by Sanna Wani and Maia Kachan, 2018-2019)
Article I. Purposes and Functions
(a) The primary purpose of the Acta Victoriana levy and organization (“the Levy”) is to administrate the literary journal Acta Victoriana. This administration covers two duties:
(i) The Levy must oversee the publishing of two annual editions of the literary journal Acta Victoriana in accordance with the rules as outlined in this Constitution. The Levy will seek to publish high quality literature and visual art by students of the University of Toronto as well as members of the wider literary and artistic communities. In particular, the Levy has a duty to prioritize and provide a venue for art and writing by young Canadian talents.
(ii) The Levy must maintain the journal’s standing. This includes but is not limited to maintaining archival materials, making past copies available both to University of Toronto libraries and online, maintenance of the website, and hosting launch events.
(b) In addition to publishing the literary journal Acta Victoriana, the Levy is committed to contributing to the cultural and literary community at Victoria University as well as the University of Toronto. The Levy will strive to provide cultural resources and opportunities to Victoria University students, both independently and in collaboration with other student organizations.
Article II. Executive Section
(a) Per VUSAC By-Law 12, Section 5.a.iii), 80% of the Executive must be members of the VCU.
(b) The executive shall consist of the following positions
(i) 1-2 Editor(s)-in-Chief
(ii) 1 Design Editor
(iii) 1 Poetry Editor
(iv) 1 Prose Editor
(c) The Executive shall hold meetings at least bi-weekly, or otherwise maintain regular contact.
Section 2.02 Editor(s)-in-Chief
(a) The outgoing Editor(s)-in-Chief will collect applications for the position no later than a month after the release of the Spring Issue.
(i) Current members, past members, and contributors may run, and two candidates may run together.
(ii) The outgoing Editor(s)-in-Chief must select and announce the new Editor(s)- in-Chief within two weeks of the deadline for submitting applications. The new Editor(s)- in-Chief must then be ratified at the next possible VUSAC meeting.
(iii) In the event that there are no candidates, the outgoing Editor(s)-in-Chief may elect to continue as Editor(s)-in-Chief. Otherwise, the outgoing Editor(s)-in-Chief cannot be candidates.
(b) The Editor(s)-in-Chief are the Levy Heads of Acta Victoriana, as per VUSAC By-Law 12, Section 2a.
(c) The Editor(s)-in-Chief are ultimately responsible for the functioning of the Levy as well as the literary journal. This includes the following responsibilities:
(i) Upholding the purposes and requirements of the Constitution.
(ii) Overseeing the finances of the Levy, as per article V.
(iii) Recruiting an executive and editorial board, as outlined in articles II and III.
(iv) Laising with VUSAC, other student organizations, and any external parties, as well as complying with all requirements of VUSAC By-Law 12.
(v) Overseeing the Levy’s resources, including office, computer, archives, and the
(d) The Editor(s)-in-Chief have the following powers:
(i) The Editor(s)-in-Chief have final authority over any contents of the journal.
(ii) The Editor(s)-in-Chief are at liberty to choose the method for selecting which submissions are discussed at the editorial meeting.
(iii) The Editor(s)-in-Chief have the authority to dismiss any members of the Editorial Board. This option should be used only as a last resort and only in cases where such members either grossly fail their duties or create an unsafe workplace.
(e) In the case of any vacant positions, the Editor(s)-in-Chief must either fulfill their duties or fill the vacancy.
(f) The Editor(s)-in-Chief are to be paid an honorarium of $500 per editor per annual term.
Section 2.03 Design Editor
(a) The Design Editor is responsible for the design of the journal covers, the layout of the internal content, and the creation of posters and marketing materials.
(b) Together with the Editor(s)-in-Chief, the Design Editor is responsible for selecting any visual artwork for the journal.
(c) The Design Editor is to be paid an honorarium of $500 per printed edition of the journal.
(d) The incoming Editor(s)-in-Chief are responsible for selecting a Design Editor in the spring.
Section 2.04 Prose and Poetry Editors
(a) The Poetry and Prose editors are responsible for overseeing the poetry and prose content of the journal, respectively. This includes but is not limited to soliciting submissions,
writing rejection letters, editing texts, and making executive decisions in tandem with the Editor(s)-in-Chief.
(b) The incoming Editor(s)-in-Chief are responsible for selecting Poetry and Prose editors in the spring.
Article III. Editorial Board
Section 3.01 Composition
(a) Each member of the executive is a member of the Editorial Board with a vote. (b) In addition to the executive, the editorial board will consist of 2-6 members.
(c) Per VUSAC By-Law 12, Section 5.a.iii), 60% of the Editorial Board must be members of the VCU.
Section 3.02 Duties and Powers
(a) The editorial board will select the literary content of each issue as outlined in Article 4.
(b) The editorial board will assist with varies duties related to the organization of the journal, such as promotion, event-planning, and communications.
(c) The editorial board can vote to impeach the Editor(s)-in-Chief if the Editor(s)-in-Chief fail to fulfill their duties. The vote to impeach the Editor(s)-in-Chief must be unanimous.
(i) To start the impeachment process, the Editorial Board must appeal to VUSAC. If VUSAC approves the appeal to impeach, the board must take a vote in person with the VPSO present.
(ii) Only a unanimous vote results in the impeachment of the Editor(s)-in-Chief. 70% of the board must present for the vote.
(iii) If the vote succeeds and there is no Editor-in-Chief, the board may elect an Editor-in-Chief from among themselves by a vote of simple majority.
Article IV. The Journal Section
(a) Submissions are open to all students of the University of Toronto, as well as any members of the larger literary, academic, and artistic communities.
(b) Submissions must adhere to the guidelines set out by the Editor(s)-in-Chief prior to the deadline
(c) Submissions may include but are not limited to poetry, prose, drama, literary essays, and visual art.
(d) The Levy reserves right of first publication for all material accepted by the Editorial Board. Copyright remains with the author.
Section 4.02 Selection
(a) Selection of literary work must be done at an in-person meeting of the editorial board. (i) At least 80% of the editorial board must be present.
(ii) Selection must be blind, i.e. the editorial board must have no knowledge of the identity of the contributor. The only exception to this rule is outlined in section 4.02ci.
(iii) The Editor(s)-in-Chief must distribute an anonymized package of submissions at least two weeks prior to the selection meeting. The Editor(s)-in-Chief must ensure that the package is created in such a way that they have no knowledge of the identity of the contributors. Each member of the editorial board must read all submissions.
(iv) In cases where there is disagreement about inclusion of a text, the Editorial Board may decide whether or not to include it by a vote of simple majority. The Editor(s)-in-Chief, however, retain final authority over the contents of the journal.
(b) Selection of visual artwork is done by the Editor(s)-in-Chief and the Design Editor.
(c) No content which is racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic, ableist, or in any other way condones or encourages prejudice will be published in Acta Victoriana. While the journal acknowledges the importance of depicting such views, especially within their social, political, and historical contexts, it will not give space to the expression of such views.
(i) In cases where the appropriateness of a text may depend on the background of the writer, the Editorial Board may request to know any appropriate information from the Editor(s)-in-Chief. In such cases, the Editor(s)-in-Chief may look up and provide any information volunteered by the writer. The Editor(s)-in-Chief may not provide the name of the writer.
(d) At the discretion of the editor(s)-in-chief, the selected artists may be paid an honorarium. The selected authors and artists may be paid an honorarium in accordance to the following guidelines:
(i) $20 per poem with a maximum of 20 poems per issue
(ii) $20 per prose piece with a maximum of 10 pieces per issue
(iii) $20 per art piece with a maximum of 15 pieces per issue
Section 4.03 Distribution
(a) Copies of Acta Victoriana will be free of charge.
(b) The Editor(s)-in-Chief are responsible for distributing the journal to libraries at the University of Toronto.
(c) If a contributor is unable to physically pick up a copy of the journal, the Levy will send 2-3 copies to anywhere.
(d) All issues of Acta Victoriana must be available online on the Acta Victoriana website.
Article V. Financial Procedures Section 4.01 Budget Preparation
(a) The budget will be prepared by the Editor(s)-in-Chief and submitted to VUSAC for ratification as per VUSAC By-Law 12 Section 4.
Section 4.02 Financial Accounts
(a) The Editor(s)-in-Chief will keep track of any and all transactions.
(b) The Editor(s)-in-Chief will maintain a surplus in the Acta Victoriana account to be used for anniversary editions of the journal.