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I would like to respond to a recent article in The Daily Princetonian detailing “new allegations'' against my colleague and mentor, Professor Sergio Verdú. It is troubling how this article constructs its narrative by enveloping Verdú, as well as all the women associated with him, in a fog of rumor, suspicion, and supposition. By publishing an article with such sensationalism and general lack of concrete facts the ‘Prince’ appears to be driven by a tunnel vision desire to vilify Verdú, and not by journalistic integrity, duty to inform the public, or concern for the women involved.
“Conscious of his emptiness, a man tries to make a faith for himself in the political realm. In vain.”
Professor Lawrence Rosen’s course ANT 342: Anthropology of Law is the reason I majored in anthropology. He commanded the attention of 200 students as if the class were a five-person seminar. Twenty years later, I still remember the examples he used in class and how excited I felt to have found an intellectual home at the University.
As an anthropologist teaching in the Princeton Writing Program whose courses regularly involve offensive material, I would like to weigh in on the recent controversy surrounding Lawrence Rosen’s use of the N-word in his class. In short, I write in support of the students who walked out on Rosen.
In her Feb. 8 letter to the editor, Professor Carolyn Rouse offered a pedagogy for Rosen’s class as contextual background for why certain students should not have walked out. Unfortunately, her letter entirely misses the point as to why the students walked out of class. There is no pedagogical purpose to using “n****r” versus “N-word” or some other euphemism in any class. What are the pedagogical reasons for using “n****r” repeatedly in class if your goal is for students to be able to argue why hate speech should or should not be protected? Can this discussion not take place without the full pronunciation of the most incendiary and racially divisive word in our lexicon? To argue that there is educational value in this line of thinking is at best, disingenuous and at worst, something else entirely. This is one of the many red herrings Rouse offers in her recent letter to the editor. The examples provided regarding a student wiping her feet on the American flag may not elicit the same response because one cannot conflate the 400-year history of the word “n****r” with those upset regarding desecration over the flag. Has anyone offended by flag desecration been oppressed, discriminated against, or systemically denied civil rights? In fact, both flag desecrators and those offended by them have been offered more protections than those called “n****r” by their oppressors. Should we also argue a pedagogical reason for using the word “f**got” or “homo” so that gay people can move beyond their emotions, too, and make an argument about why hate speech should or should not be protected? Certainly not!
Carolyn Rouse, chair of the anthropology department, pictured above. Courtesy of Princeton Alumni Weekly.
Love saves lives. This was the theme of the 45th annual March for Life in Washington D.C., which drew tens of thousands of pro-life activists — including 40 students from Princeton Pro-Life — to protest the legalization of abortion in Roe v. Wade. Though four and a half decades of marches have not overturned Roe, we persist in joyfully and peacefully witnessing to the sanctity of all human life.
There is something sacred about eating, about the basic act of breaking bread with another. It is one of the rituals of human history, the sharing of a table. It sits alongside other sacred rituals of humanity — passing time together, praying together, mourning together — that are all, at their heart, forms of togetherness.
“That sucks.” “Thank you for sharing that with me.” “I’m really sorry you’re going through this.” “How can I be here for you?”
The Republican tax bill that President Trump signed into law just before Christmas is a disaster for millennials. While the wealthy and major corporations get a massive tax cut, millennials will get saddled with a new inflation tax, trillion-dollar deficits, and higher healthcare and housing costs. If Democrats want to win back Congress and the White House, they need to talk to millennials about repealing the Republican tax bill and replacing it with programs that truly help young people get an affordable education, earn a livable wage, and save for their future.
Princeton undergraduate students and alumni: You should be absolutely furious right now. We just had our (honor-) constitutionally-endowed rights obliterated by a short email sent by several administrators. These rights were guaranteed to us 125 years ago with the establishment of the Honor Constitution and yet, one well-timed email was enough to dismantle them.
I write in response to Sarah Sakha’s response to my opinion piece demonstrating that Title IX proceedings are far less fair than those of the Honor Code. I have nothing to add to my original argument, which was based on an undisputed, factual comparison of the two sets of procedures. As Sakha herself wrote: “Ultimately, I agree with Berger’s overarching argument. Yes, the Honor Code Constitution presents stipulations far stricter than those presented by Title IX regulations.” In response to Sakha’s piece, I have three additional points.
Many students are understandably concluding that the administration remanding Honor Code Reform is unjustified and unexpected. Here, I will argue the reforms were an irresponsible abuse of a longstanding agreement between students and faculty. This entire calamity was provoked by the USG and the USG subcommittee that created these reforms, seeing as they were warned about the potential consequences of their irresponsible actions.
“Fairness.” It was the word at the heart of the arguments made in favor of Honor Code reform during December’s campaign. In announcing the referenda, the campaign sponsors wrote, “Most importantly, we need a fair system … we’re proposing four, common-sense reforms that will lead to greater fairness and academic integrity.” The importance of fairness was repeated throughout a photo campaign featuring calls from student leaders to vote for Honor Code reform in order to, for example, “strengthen our commitment to academic integrity, due process, and fairness for all students,” “ensure fairness for future classes,” and “make sure the system is fair for everyone.”
In the December Undergraduate Student Government election, four referenda on the Constitution of the Honor System passed by a three-fourths majority. On Jan. 4, the undergraduate student body received an email from Deans Dolan and Kulkarni and Vice President Calhoun informing us that the four referenda will not be taking effect at this time. However, as per Article VI of the Constitution of the Honor System, “The Constitution may be amended … upon the initiative by petition of 200 members of the undergraduate body, followed by a three-fourths vote in a student referendum as conducted by the Elections Committee of the Undergraduate Student Government.”
To the Editor,
To the Editor,
To the Editor,
I write to share clarification and historical context in response to the letter by former Honor Committee chairs that was published on Monday, Dec. 11. The authors declare that for violations of the honor system, “in 1893, Princeton students settled on a consequence — one-year suspension...” In fact, for the majority of the Honor System's existence, the standard penalty for Honor Code violations was expulsion. A one-year suspension was not a listed penalty in the Constitution of the Honor System until 1974.