Revival of Political Studies Journal on Campus Accompanied by Interdisciplinary Aspirations

Res Publica, Colorado College’s journal of political studies, is the newest student-run publication on campus. Founded by Lizzy Vian ‘19 and Kathryn Kenny ‘20, the journal is intersectional and interdisciplinary by nature, accepting and encouraging submissions of papers written not strictly by political science majors or minors or for political science classes.

Cartoon by Cate Johnson

Vian spoke to the mission of the publication. “There’s the Catalyst, and the Cipher, and the Leviathan, and all of them, and they all have their respective places on campus,” she explained. “Philosophy and a couple of other departments also have student-run journals. There isn’t really anything for political science, first of all, but we also wanted to broaden it to encompass more than just that. That’s why we’re calling it ‘the journal of political studies’ [rather than the political science journal].”

“We want it to be inter-disciplinary and intersectional and include a wide variety of majors and topics, because I feel like there’s not really anything like that on campus, and I think that that’s really important to have students converge in that way,” Vian continued. “I feel like there’s not that much crossing of disciplines except if you are a major and a minor in something else.”

Kenny concurred, and explained the approval process she and Vian went though. “Basically, [Lizzy] texted me, and was like, ‘why don’t we have [a political journal on campus]?’” she said. “We actually emailed David [Hendrickson] because he’s the head of the department this year, and he invited us to speak at the department meeting. So we basically just pitched it and they seemed to agree that this is not something that could be substituted by us working for The Cipher or something. It’s a new type of publication [on campus], and that’s how we’ve gotten the support for it, and they offered the stem money for us.”

“I think it’s a great concept,” said Hendrickson, who was the former faculty overseer of the Cutler board and is additionally the current head of the journalism minor. “Kathryn and Lizzy approached me and a few of the other faculty asking if we would be supportive of such a thing, and we said, ‘Of course!’ There was a publication that some of the [Political Science] majors did, oh, maybe seven or eight years ago … It was of a similar character, in the sense of wanting to publish articles of a political nature that drew not only on the work of students in this department and cognate departments, [but] that encouraged contributions from others.” 

Hendrickson noted that the individuals involved in this publication had since graduated, and the publication itself eventually ended. However, he expressed excitement about the rebirth of a journal on campus. “I don’t have any expectations of how similar or different [Res Publica] will be from that publication” he said. “That’s all up to Lizzy and Kathryn and any of the other students who are participating in it. I think that anything that gives students an outlet for creativity, you know, in principle, contributes something to campus life. It’s not meant to displace anything else, it’s just its own thing. And this is being done on an experimental basis, we’re providing funding for the first issue, and we’ll see where it leads.”

The publication date for the first issue is set for Block 4 of 2018. While the deadline for current seniors to submit has already passed, all returning students have until Block 2 of next year to submit. “We’re hoping that we get as many submissions as possible—until then, we’re just going to have to wait and see.” said Vian.

Submissions to the first edition of Res Publica can be sent to ccrespublica@gmail.com for consideration. Please include your name, pronouns, major/minor, and year in school

Erica Williams

Erica Williams

Erica has been reporting for the Catalyst since her freshman year. She is a history-poly-sci and REMs double major. Interestingly, her grandfather fixed Einstein's furnace.

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