Following the Isla Vista shooting this week, Jeff Sharlet, Dartmouth English prof (and author, Harper’s contributing editor, etc.) took to Twitter to discuss the tragic event. Like others, he linked Elliot Rodger’s shooting to the pervasive destructiveness of misogyny. Unlike others, he compared Rodger to sexual assailants at Dartmouth:
World of difference, but I think of Elliot Rodgers way I think of many of the young men who commit sexual violence at school where I teach.
— JeffSharlet (@JeffSharlet) May 25, 2014
We followed up with Sharlet for further explanation of the tweet’s idea, and he went in on both Rodger and rapists.
Rape and murder are different crimes, of course, but rape and Rodger’s decision to kill women seem to me likely rooted in the same pervasive misogyny, a sense of some or all women as less than human. I’m distressed by those who’d dismiss Rodger as nothing but a monstrous outlier. The logic of hate he took to its most extreme end is the same of that of the rapist, and, yes, of that of those who apologize for rapists.
Dartmouth’s attempts to change their culture appear to be working, at least for the professors.
Dartmouth’s been having a rough couple of months. Amidst the turmoil of Parker Gilbert’s sexual assault trial, student protests over the Freedom Budget, concerned alumni airing discriminatory grievances, and slipping application rates, it makes sense that the college’s students need a bit of a pick-me-up. However, this attempt to document “the positive side of Dartmouth” may come across as ironic to some — or maybe it’s just the song choice.
“Dartmouth College – Happy,” uploaded Monday night to YouTube and already boasting 35,000 views, shows over 100 students dancing around campus to Pharrell’s “Happy.” We’re not making this up; take a look for yourself below.
Dartmouth has always been the problem child of the Ivy League, but President Hanlon’s summit last week on the “extreme behavior” plaguing the university is an unexpectedly candid admittance of the many toxic and harmful practices that characterize parts of student life on the Dartmouth campus. The school is notorious for its Greek life antics and threats of sexual violence on campus—the acquittal of Parker Gilbert, formerly D’16, now a former Dartmouth student, accused of raping a fellow classmate, has been the subject of nationwide media attention.
In the January/February 2014 issue of Dartmouth Alumni Magazine, Abbye E. Meyer, D’02, wrote about her lasting issues with the Dartmouth community — namely the exclusivity inherent in the social structure of Greek houses and senior and secret societies.
Then on Valentine’s Day, Judge Quentin L. Kopp, D’49, got in the spirit of the holiday and wrote Meyer an ode, of sorts:
“You claim feelings of ‘…loyalty and shame.’ I am ashamed of you.”
Ah, springtime at an Ivy: students descend on the quad, thesis writers emerge from their caves, and — best of all — high school seniors attack campus with naïveté, un-jaded excitement, and a myriad of questions all boiling down to:
Can my host get me alcohol? Is this the school for me?
Columbia’s first Days on Campus program — prospective student visiting weekend — for the Class of 2018 began today. Prospies were treated with a beautiful spring day and blue and white balloons blanketing College Walk. But they’re also getting another dose of classic Columbia: protests.
At 4 p.m. this afternoon, about 35 Dartmouth students stormed President Phil Hanlon’s office and settled in for a protest. The idealistic group, who came armed with sleeping bags and pizza to wait out the night, was seeking a point-by-point response from the administration regarding last month’s Freedom Budget.
Here’s hoping it saves money for freedom fries.
After weeks of often extremely heated debate amongst students, Dartmouth College administrators finally released a statement responding to demands set out by the “Freedom Budget.”
“Diversity is one of the cornerstones of our academic community,” the statement, written by President Philip J. Hanlon and Interim Provost Martin Wybourne, (and as generic and vague as you can expect from college administrators) read. “We, as the administration, must engage in campus more effectively in current and future actions to achieve our shared vision for Dartmouth.”
Amanda Childress, coordinator of Dartmouth’s Sexual Assault Awareness Program, is facing backlash over comments made earlier in the month where she argued that a sexual assault allegation should be enough to see a student expelled.
Speaking as part of panel on sexual misconduct at the University of Virginia on February 11th, Childress is quoted as asking, “Why could we not expel a student based on an allegation?”
“If we know that a person is reasonably a threat to our community,” Childress said, “why are we not removing them and protecting the safety of our students?”
55.5 is bad enough, but the redaction job merits no credit at all
Sometimes you anonymously post something online. And sometimes you don’t do such a good job at the anonymity. See: this poorly-redacted Zeta Psi pledge test that was posted multiple times to bored@baker.
Lots is worth reading; we just want to draw your attention to one wacky essay question:
During homecoming, you are playing against an alum (’12) who looks blacked out, and his partner, who is a ’17 girl, who seems creeped out by the whole situation. Based on the conversations you had with the alum while playing pong, he is extremely against the administration and claims he took down Jim Kim. The game comes down to half cup versus half cup. The alum comes up to you, says that if he wins this game, he can hook up with this girl, completing his Dartmouth X. He says if he loses, your black book will be destroyed, and he will take Zeta Psi down. The girl clearly looks uncomfortable and wants to leave, but seems too intimidated to speak out. What should you do? Explain why.
Wow! And here’s the pledge’s answer, which was pretty much the only thing he got near-full credit for:
Tell the two players to wait a bit and for your partner to watch them. Then grab an exec and tell him to come down and handle the situation. As a pledge, you have no rights as a person nor do you have authority over anything. This ’17 needs to get carded by an upper. The alum should be dealt w/ by someone who knows him. [emphasis ours]
[N.B. Eric Siu, the Dartmouth sophomore whose name is on the test, ignored a great number of emails for comment. As did Zeta Psi. But the test was explicitly mentioned in the Beta listserv that Gawker published, and all the names in the test refer to real Dartmouth students or fraternity brothers.]