News for the Smith College Community // February 11, 1999
Joy Frisch Hakim '51, historian and author, will be the speaker at Rally Day exercises Wednesday, February 17, at 1:30 p.m. in John M. Greene Hall.
Hakim, who will receive a Smith College Medal during the convocation, is the author of A History of US, a 10-volume series of books for young people that has been widely praised as a welcome change from conventional American textbooks. The series artfully weaves the inevitable facts and dates of history within the larger pattern of an absorbing, colorful, morally complex story.
Calling on her earlier experience as a teacher and journalist, Hakim spent a decade writing A History of US. She wanted to make the study of American history challenging and compelling to all children, whatever their academic advantages or disadvantages, and to make the unique stories of all American groups known and appreciated by others.
Although publishers and teachers alike were initially skeptical about textbooks so innovative in content and appearance, Oxford University Press eventually gambled on publishing the series and was handsomely rewarded when A History of US was adopted by school systems around the country. Prominent educators have suggested that Hakim's books might spark a revolution in the writing and design of textbooks.
Other Smith alumnae who will receive medals at Rally Day are child psychiatrist and researcher Stella Chess '35; director of Wisconsin's John Michael Kohler Art Center and innovator in arts programming Ruth DeYoung Kohler '63; and environmental preservationist and founding director of Coastal America Virginia K. Tippie '72. Members of the community will have an opportunity to hear the medalists speak about their interests and activities and to meet them at a panel and reception in the Alumnae House starting at 3 p.m.
Two members of the faculty will receive teaching awards during the ceremony in John M. Greene Hall, and there will be prizes as well for the house banners festooning the hall -- one for the most creative banner and one for best use of this year's Rally Day theme, "Smith College: For Women ... For the World." A new tradition will be established this year with the presentation of plaques to the houses that win the banner awards. The plaques will be engraved annually and hang in the award-winning houses until new winners are named the following year.
The day's events will continue in the evening with the Rally Day Show, an always-humorous series of skits presented by the classes of '99, '00, '01, '02 and Ada Comstock Scholars. The show is at 7:30 p.m. in John M. Greene Hall. A pre-Rally Day party hosted by Rec Council in Davis Center will be held Tuesday, starting at 9 p.m.
Rally Day was initiated in 1876 with a Washington's Birthday dinner of "the Hardy 14," the entire class of 1879. At one time or another the ceremonies have included parodies of Gilbert and Sullivan operettas, student concerts, dancing parties, athletic competitions, song contests and debates.
This will be the second year for a Smith tradition established last year: the first 300 students to arrive at John M. Greene Hall for the ceremonies will receive a memento of the occasion -- a lapel pin emblazoned with the 1999 Rally Day theme. The Rally Day committee hopes that the pins may become such sought-after emblems of a Smith education that students will emerge at the end of four years with diplomas in one hand and their Rally Day pins in the other.
Opening Set for Davis Hangout
The grind of the espresso machine, the low buzz of lively conversation, the cool a cappella sounds of the Noteables and soft jazz and the intoxicating smell of assorted brewing coffees will pervade the grand opening of Jittery's, a new coffee house operated by RADS in the Davis Center, on Tuesday, February 16, from 8:30 to 11 p.m. Thereafter Jittery's -- "So good it's unnerving," RADS manager Patty Hentz says of it -- will have regular hours of 7 p.m. to midnight, seven days a week.
The coffee house is meant to be a place for students to meet and relax, says Dean of the College Maureen Mahoney, who will cut the ribbon at the opening. Mahoney says she got the idea for Jittery's two years ago, when the students' self-study revealed that they "wanted and needed a place to hang out. What I envisioned was a funky place like the Haymarket downtown, where students could gather in a relaxed setting."
Jittery's is in the recently renovated space adjacent to Paradise City Grill just inside the west Davis entrance. It will feature a lounge area with "big, puffy, comfy couches," says Hentz, as well as computers with Netscape access, magazines and books for browsing, coffee -- of course -- and delectable desserts. "There'll be cakes, scones, cookies, chocolate-covered espresso beans and specialty pastries," says Hentz, as well as an eclectic assortment of beverages like San Pelegrino bottled water from Italy, Oregon Chai Tea and the award-winning Seattle's Best Coffee.
Hentz says that there may be further live performances by student musical groups such as Crapapella and Mrs. Remote Control at Jittery's in the future. "We're hoping this will become a great meeting place," she says. "We envision students coming to relax and use the computer. Mostly, it's a place where they'll feel comfortable."
Once the Campus Center is constructed, Jittery's will be moved there, says Mahoney.
Event to Honor Arts Mavericks
The lives and work of two 20th-century American innovators will be related and celebrated in "Wallace Stevens and Charles Ives: Connecticut Originals," a concert/symposium scheduled for Saturday, February 20, at 1:30 p.m. in Sweeney Concert Hall. Through music and commentary the event will explore the coincidental parallels between these contemporaries' lives. Presented jointly by the music and English departments, it will be free and open to the public.
Charles Ives (1874-1954), employed most of his life as an insurance executive, became known posthumously as an icon of classical contemporary composition. He, along with Igor Stravinsky and Darius Milhaud, was among the groundbreakers of progressive compositional techniques -- polytonality, complex rhythms, tone clusters, aleatory (or "accidental") musical events -- later employed by John Cage, Karlheinz Stockhausen and other innovators.
Wallace Stevens (1879-1955), an executive with Hartford Accident and Indemnity Company, penned several award-winning collections of poetry and became recognized late in life as a prominent 20th-century voice of modernism. In 1955 he both won the Pulitzer Prize and garnered his second National Book Award for The Collected Poems of Wallace Stevens.
Though they differed in their approach to their work -- Ives playfully experimented with form and technique, Stevens with concepts and progressive ideas-both shared a fondness for their Connecticut homes and the New England tradition, says English professor Francis Murphy, who will provide a commentary on Stevens during the symposium. "Both showed great interest in the New England writers such as Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau," he says. Those influences were sometimes manifested in the artists' work.
The symposium will feature Ives songs from the collections for which he first became known, as well as Ned Rorem's Last Poem of Wallace Stevens, all performed by professor of music Jane Bryden, soprano; associate professor John Van Buskirk, piano; and Harry Clark, cello. Commentary about Stevens and Ives will be presented by Murphy and by Vivian Perlis, an oral historian of American music at Yale University.
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Africa Lectures to Reveal U.S. Misperceptions
In "Power Revealed: Nationalism and the Production of Knowledge in Africa," a series of three spring lectures, Toyin Falola, Gwendolen M. Carter Visiting Professor of History, will explore how Africa's assimilation into the modern global community since the 19th century has not always been accurately portrayed in American media and academia.
The series will begin Monday, February 22, at 4:30 p.m. in Seelye 106 with "'No Longer at Ease': Modernity, Alienation and the Crisis of Adjustment in Africa." Falola will argue that, in contrast to the commonly held view that Africa has remained largely isolationist and Afrocentric during this century, the continent has sought to embrace modern global trends and participate in the world community. "Contrary to popular thinking, Africans confronted modernity head on," says Falola. "Alienation has always frightened Africans."
Falola, a professor of African history at the University of Texas, Austin, has focused his recent research and writings on aspects of religion, decolonization and development in Nigeria and other African countries. He has written Development Planning and Decolonization of Nigeria, The Military Factor in Nigeria, and most recently, Religious Violence in Modern Nigeria. He completed his undergraduate and doctoral studies at the University of Ife, Nigeria.
The lecture series will continue on Monday, March 29, and Monday, April 19. All the lectures are free and open to the public and will take place in Seelye 106, with receptions immediately following in Seelye 207.
The Gwendolen M. Carter Professorship is a rotating appointment between departments in the humanities and social sciences. As part of his appointment, Falola this semester is also teaching "Colonial Africa: Conquest, Culture and Resistance," an African history seminar.
Friendly Aid for Skittish Writers
Suffering from writer's block or grammar phobia? Afraid to summarize? Can't tell the active from the passive voice? If so, the Jacobson Center's second-semester series "The Complete Student" is for you. Sessions will take place February 16 and 23 and March 2 and 9 from noon to 1 p.m. in Seelye Hall 307. Feel free to bring a bag lunch.
"Overcoming Writing Anxiety" will get you started on February 16 by presenting techniques for beginning writing assignments, understanding and overcoming writer's block and dealing with writing anxiety.
On February 23 you'll learn "Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Grammar but Were Afraid to Ask." If you're unsure about grammatical usage and terms, this workshop will ease your fears and tell you how to avoid the most common errors.
"Editing Your Prose," on March 2, will review practical editing techniques that will strengthen your writing. You'll learn about the active and passive voice, word choice, and issues of audience and tone.
For more technical tricks of the trade, try "Working with Sources" in the Jacobson Center on March 9. It will provide guidelines and strategies for when, where and how to summarize, quote and paraphrase.
Up Close & Personnel
Arrivals: Margi Caplan, membership and marketing director, Museum of Art; Cynthia Furtek, academic secretary, humanities; Mark Horwitz, project director, School for Social Work; Patricia Kimura, human resources assistant; Deborah Letourneau, dining-room assistant, Lamont; Jennifer Parasiliti, nurse, Campus School; Shawn Reynolds, academic secretary, science center; Steven Samolewicz, ski coach; Kelly Thibodeau, transcripts assistant, registrar's office; Andrea Tulenko-Catlin, engineering program coordinator, physics; Amy Wallace, program assistant, advancement; Catherine Youngen, teacher's aide, Campus School.
Departures: Anne Brossard, science center; Jennifer Desjarlais, admissions; Kathryn Flynn, advancement ; Elizabeth Garlock, Campus School; Ellen Goodwin, Campus School; Charlotte Heartt, advancement; Jennifer Murphy, Campus School; Dorothy Sanchez, purchasing; Ashley Struck, student affairs.
The Project on Women and Social Change
1. The project, founded in 1978, has to date sponsored 276 conferences, summer workshops, work-in-progress presentations and public lectures.
2. This year its directors are Myron Peretz Glazer, professor of sociology, and Christine M. Shelton, associate professor of exercise and sport studies.
3. The project proudly sponsored the publication last year of Myron Peretz Glazer and Penina Migdal Glazer's The Environmental Crusaders: Confronting Disaster and Mobilizing Community (Pennsylvania State University Press).
4. This July 7-10 the project will sponsor "Physical Education and Sport in a Global Context," a conference at Smith marking the 50th anniversary of the International Association of Physical Education and Sport for Girls and Women, which was founded by Dorothy Ainsworth, former director of physical education at Smith. Professor Shelton is conference director.
5. The project presently sponsors the work of the following five research associates:
6. Artist Sarah Belchetz-Swanson paints portraits of high-achieving, contemporary women such as Jill Ker Conway to celebrate the growing importance of professional women in our culture. (One of her portraits hangs in College Hall, another in the Sophia Smith Collection.)
7. Erika Kates is a public policy specialist and a co-director of the Welfare, Education and Training-Access Coalition, a group involved in all aspects of social change, including recent state-welfare reform.
8. Film producer Claudia Levin is producing for PBS Only A Teacher, a three-part documentary on the history of American educators.
9. Biologist Angeline Faye Schrater is a member of the Gender Advisory Panel and Technical and Scientific Advisory Group of the World Health Organization (WHO) and is working with WHO to develop new contraceptives.
10. Miriam Slater, a professor emerita at Hampshire College, is completing
an article titled "Women in Veterinary Medicine: Past Achievements
and Future Challenges."
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Ellen Kaplan, associate professor of theatre, will be featured on Real to Reel, a Sunday-morning human interest television show produced by the Catholic Communication Corporation, a nonprofit division of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield. The show will air February 21 at 11 a.m. on WWLP, channel 22, and may be repeated more locally on Monday, February 22 at 6 p.m. on Media One cable channel 15. Kaplan will be interviewed by the show's host, the Rev. Bill Pomerleau, about Gypsies (Roma): The Other Holocaust Victims, a presentation she gave January 31 at Springfield's Hatikvah Holocaust Education and Resource Center. The presentation -- which included a lecture by Kaplan and clips from her documentary film, Mixed Blessings: Jews and Gypsies (Roma) on the Margins -- explored the origins of gypsies in Europe and their experience in World War II. Pomerleau will also write an article based on his interview with Kaplan for the February 19 issue of the Catholic Observer, the diocese magazine.
In a piece in the December 18 Chronicle of Higher Education about the Amazonian Library in Iquitos, Peru, author Carolyn Mooney mentions that the library's director, Padre Joaquín García Sánchez, is "a member of the advisory board for the Center for Amazonian Culture based at Smith College." The article also refers to the inaugural issue of the Amazonian Literary Review and its editors, Nicomedes Suárez Auraúz and Charles Cutler, both of the Spanish and Portuguese department.
Kathy Eden '74 will visit her alma mater on February 18 to present a lecture, "What a Captive Woman, a Spoiled Egyptian and a Pythagorean Have in Common: Erasmus on Tradition." Eden, a professor of English and comparative literature and an associate member of the classics department at Columbia University, majored in classics and English at Smith and earned a Ph.D. at Stanford University. "Eden combines a great intellect, enormous personal vitality and superb teaching," said Patrick Coby, director of the program in ancient studies. "In fact, she is the 1998 recipient of the Great Teachers Award at Columbia."
Eden's lecture will explore two competing models of tradition: the one Erasmus inherited from late antiquity from the likes of Augustine and Jerome that figures tradition as property appropriated from an enemy, and the one Erasmus introduced from the classical-especially Pythagorean -- tradition that reconfigures the notion of property shared among friends.
The lecture will be presented Thursday, February 18, at 7:30 p.m. in Seelye Hall 106.
Rosenfeld Memorial Service
There will be a memorial service for Stuart Rosenfeld on Sunday, February 21, at 2 p.m. in Helen Hills Hills Chapel, followed by a reception in the Bodman Lounge. Rosenfeld, who was professor of chemistry and had been a member of the Smith faculty since 1982, died on January 21 in Madras, India, while visiting the family of his wife, Nalini Bhushan, associate professor of philosophy at Smith.
Lunar New Year
The Asian Students Association of Smith College cordially invites all members of the college community to join in its celebration of the Lunar New Year. Meant to assure good fortune and prosperity, the celebration will include a performance of the traditional Chinese lion dance, a demonstration of kung-fu, traditional Korean games (with prizes for winning teams), various arts and crafts activities (including Chinese calligraphy), a movie and much more. All of this and a buffet of delicious Chinese and Korean food will be included in the general admission ($5, general; $4, students; $3, seniors and children under 16). The celebration will take place February 26 from 6 to 9 p.m. in Davis ballroom. Tickets will be sold at the door. (Ext. 7249 or 7259.)
Faculty & Staff
The next faculty meeting will be held February 24 in the Alumnae House. Tea will be served at 3:45 p.m. and the meeting will begin at 4:10 p.m. Agenda items must be received by Rosetta Cohen no later than February 17. Material to be included in the agenda mailing must be camera-ready and be received in College Hall 27 by Monday, February 15.
The Activities Committee of Staff Council has organized its annual Have a Heart food drive for the Northampton Survival Center. Boxes with lists of desired nonperishable food items will be placed in many buildings across campus between February 15 and March 1. Make a difference: help feed a family in need by placing your contribution in one of the boxes. (Cindy Rucci, ext. 2923; email@example.com.)
The student affairs office is sponsoring a skiing and snowboarding trip to Stratton Mountain in southern Vermont on Sunday, February 21, for students, other Smith community members and their friends -- whatever their abilities on the slopes. Bus transportation will be provided. The group rate is based on a minimum of 20 participants (nonstudent rates are shown in parentheses). Group-rate package options include: lift only, $30 ($34); lift and ski or snowboard lesson, $50 ($54); lift and ski rental, $57 ($61); lift and snowboard rental, $61 ($65); lift, ski rental and lesson, $77 ($81); lift, snowboard rental and lesson, $81 ($85); learn-to-ski package, $55; learn-to-board package, $65. Children's rates available upon request. Sign up (first-come, first-served) and pay in full in the student affairs office, College Hall 24, before Thursday, February 18.
Denis Johnston Prize
The annual Denis Johnston Prize for Creative Writing in the Dramatic Media is awarded jointly by the Smith College departments of English and theatre to a current Five College undergraduate. Any unpublished manuscript of any length may be submitted to the Denis Johnston Prize Committee, Theatre Building T205, Smith College. Please submit three copies of each manuscript to be considered, along with an envelope with a return address appropriate after June 1. Submission deadline: April 1.
The deadline for the college's Internships in the Public Interest program has been extended to February 25. Offered in Boston, New York, Chicago, Sarasota and Washington, D.C., the program provides an opportunity to work in a not-for-profit organization under the guidance of an alumna mentor. Participants may take part in panels, tours and social events hosted by alumnae, and except for graduating seniors are eligible for Praxis funding. Applications are available at the CDO help desk.
Due to the Ash Wednesday service, the discussion/reflection gathering for Catholic Adas scheduled for February 17 has been canceled. The weekly gatherings will resume February 24.
Interested in becoming a CDO peer adviser? Advisers lead workshops, provide library assistance, critique résumés and help create CDO programs. Ten hours of training this semester will prepare you for a paid position working four to eight hours per week during the 1999-2000 academic year. All students (including Adas) not graduating before May 2000 are encouraged to pick up an application at the CDO help desk. Application deadline: March 3. (Rene Hill, ext. 2570.)
Body-Image Support Group
A Counseling Services support group, "Women, Food and Body Image," will meet for eight weekly sessions beginning in late February. Using Leslea Newman's book Some Body to Love, the group will concentrate on journal-keeping and interpersonal sharing but will also explore relaxation and guided-visualization techniques. It will meet Thursdays from 4:30 to 5:45 p.m., and participants must attend all eight sessions. The group will be limited to eight students, and participants must preregister by calling extension 2840.
Counseling Services is offering two self-exploration groups for students, one meeting Mondays from 4:30 to 6 p.m. and the other meeting Tuesdays during the same hours. Call extension 2840 to arrange to attend a preliminary meeting with group facilitators.
The Jacobson Center offers peer writing assistance in Seelye 307, SundaysThursdays, 7-10 p.m.; at Davis Center on Tuesdays, 3-6 p.m.; and at Cushing House dining room on Sundays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, 7-10 p.m. Students may bring all stages of drafts. No appointments are necessary and all services are free.
T-Shirt Design Contest
The Ada class cabinet is sponsoring a contest to design a T-shirt for the upcoming Ada fund-raiser. This year's theme is "Welcome to Paradise." The contest is open to all Smith students and the winner will receive $35. (Wendy Sutter, 746-3131; firstname.lastname@example.org.)
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