The meetings of professional organizations in conjunction with the annual CLA conventions are to be encouraged when their goals and interests are compatible with those of CLA and meetings under other circumstances would be difficult or impossible. Such meetings enable smaller constituencies to engage in the scholarly exchange of information and to enrich the general activities and programs of the CLA convention.

Allied Organization Interest Form

To Become an Allied Organization

To achieve allied organization status, the interested group should submit a petition to the CLA Executive Committee. Only the Executive Committee can grant allied organization status. The petition should include 1) a description of the disciplinary goals and interests of the organization, 2) a statement of how the interests of the group and CLA would be better served by such status, and 3) a copy of the group's Constitution or Bylaws. Petitions may be submitted at any time, and they will be reviewed within sixty days of receipt. The continued status of allied organizations will be reviewed annually by the Program Committee.

Allied Organization Rules

  1. Members of allied organizations who attend the annual CLA convention must be members of CLA and have paid annual CLA dues and convention registration fees.
  2. An invited guest speaker to an allied organization function, such as a luncheon, is not required to be a member of CLA. This courtesy does not extend to the purchase of a ticket to attend the annual CLA banquet. CLA is not liable for any fee agreements between allied organizations and their invited speakers.
  3. Allied organizations must adhere to convention deadlines.
  4. Each approved allied organization may hold one program session at the annual convention. Proposals must be submitted by the proposal deadline provided to the CLA Vice President who serves as the Chair of the Program Committee.
  5. All arrangements for hotel meeting space at our convention must be made by CLA. CLA is not liable for any agreement entered into between an allied organization and a hotel.
  6. An allied organization may conduct a business meeting (based upon the availability of space) during the CLA convention, but it cannot hold an annual meeting, convention, or conference simultaneously with the annual CLA convention.
  7. An allied organization is responsible for its own mailings and announcements. CLA will send one allied organization meeting announcement as part of its annual convention materials if supplied to the Program Chair by the deadline provided.

These policies were adapted from the Allied Organization Guidelines adopted in 1994 at the CLA Executive Meeting in Washington (14-15 Oct. 1994). They have been updated by a unanimous vote of the Executive Committee on 1 Nov. 2020.


Alice Childress Society

Contact: La Vinia D. Jennings, [email protected]

Charles Chesnutt Society

Contact: Ernestine Pickens-Glass, [email protected]

Georgiana Simpson Society

Contact: Carolyn Hodges, [email protected]
Contact: Janice D. Mitchell, [email protected]

The Georgiana Simpson Society is an independent organization of experienced educators and scholars in German Studies. The Society seeks to foster a better understanding of the transatlantic ties linking Germany and the African Diaspora and to present global perspectives of the ways in which the experiences of Germans of African descent and Black immigrants to and emigrants from Germany and other German-speaking nations are represented in history, literature, the arts, and other cultural contributions. The Society aims to promote comparative scholarship to help bolster German Studies in North America by providing a broader, more accurate visual account of German culture and society for German Studies.

Langston Hughes Society

Contact: Christopher Allen Varlack, [email protected]

Named in honor of the first African American to make his living solely by his pen, the Langston Hughes Society (LHS) is a national association of scholars, teachers, creative and performing artists, students, and lay persons who seek to increase awareness and appreciation of Langston Hughes by promoting scholarship and creative achievement. In honor of his legacy and his commitment to encouraging young writers, the Langston Hughes Society, established in 1981, remains dedicated to supporting writers today. The Langston Hughes Review (ISSN: 0737-0555) is the official publication of the Society.

The Modernist Studies Association

Contact: [email protected]

The Modernist Studies Association is devoted to the study of the arts in their social, political, cultural, and intellectual contexts from the later nineteenth- through the mid-twentieth century. The organization aims to develop an international and interdisciplinary forum to promote exchange among scholars in the revitalized and rapidly changing field.

The Octavia E. Butler Society

Contact: Tarshia Stanley, [email protected]


The Octavia E. Butler Society is devoted to preserving Butler's literary legacy by encouraging the teaching of her works in the academy and other acts of scholarly engagement. 


The Toni Morrison Society

Contact: [email protected]


The Toni Morrison Society was founded May 28, 1993, at the annual meeting of the American Literature Association in Baltimore, Maryland. At the invitation of Carolyn Denard, then an Associate Professor of English at Georgia State University, twenty-six scholars and supporters of Morrison's work met in Baltimore to establish the Toni Morrison Society as an official member of the coalition of American author societies that comprise the American Literature Association. With its founding, the Toni Morrison Society became the 41st author society of the Association and the fourth dedicated to an African American author.


Society for the Study of American Women Writers

Contact: Ellen Garvey, [email protected]

The Society for the Study of American Women Writers (SSAWW) was established in 2000 to promote and advance the study of American women writers through research, teaching, and publication. It is the goal of the Society to strengthen relations among persons and institutions both in the United States and internationally who are undertaking such studies, and to broaden knowledge widely among the general public about American women writers. The Society is committed to diversity in the study of American women writers--racial, ethnic, gender, sexual orientation, region, and era--as well as of scholars participating in the Society. Legacy is the official journal of the Society.