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The Campaign for Mount Holyoke Surpasses $200 Million Goal

Tatum Steps in as Acting President

Chaplain Recounts Afghan Suffering

From Seoul to South Hadley: Korean Scholars Visit Weissman Center for Leadership

A Look at The Campaign for Mount Holyoke October 1998 to Present

"Learning the Rules": Woodard's Flies Are Model Organisms for Genetic Research

Ideas Sought for Plan

Hip-Hop Artist KRS-ONE in Concert February 1

January Term's Captivating Calendar of Events

200 Celebrate Legacy of Reverend Martin Luther King Jr.

Front-Page News

This Week at MHC

Nota Bene


Mount Holyoke College News and Events Vista The College Street Journal Archives

January 25, 2002, Special Edition

Front-Page News

Two for the Globe A feature article on acting president Beverly Daniel Tatum appeared in the Boston Globe January 10. "At Home with Beverly Daniel Tatum"
focuses on Tatum's home life in Florence, Massachusetts, where she and her husband, Travis, strive for "an active response to their status as a black family living in a predominantly white neighborhood." Their response includes enrolling their sons in schools with at least some other black children, actively seeking opportunities to socialize with other black families, embracing African American art and cultural traditions, and, for several years, attending the Martin Luther King Community Church in Springfield. These efforts to combat social isolation and help their sons "see themselves positively reflected in their environment" are based on Tatum's research on black families and personal experience, both of which tell her that the best-adjusted children come from "race-conscious" homes (those in which parents embrace their blackness and cultural heritage), not from ''race-neutral'' or ''race-avoidant'' ones in which families take a laissez-faire attitude toward racial identity or shun discussion about it altogether.

The Boston Globe also drew on Tatum's expertise on race for the January 13 article "Roots Plus 25," in which writer Don Aucoin considers whether the twelve-hour TV miniseries Roots had any enduring social effects after sweeping the nation in 1977. The program, which was based on Alex Haley's Pulitzer Prize-winning 1976 book, won nine Emmy Awards and still stands as the third-highest-rated program of all time. Aucoin finds that its messages about race and discrimination encouraged the national movement toward multiculturalism and triggered a lasting interest in genealogy, and he quotes Tatum as saying that "the segments of Roots set in Africa made the crucial point to black and
white viewers that ‘there was a history before slavery.'"

On the other hand, Aucoin finds that Roots did not have a significant influence on the political and economic policies underlying discrimination, and that its story has not reached today's younger people (those under 35).

MHC "Magnifique" An article in the December 4 issue of the French newspaper Les Echos discusses why a number of "women only" colleges in the U.S. are thriving. According to the story, now that parity is being written into the laws of Western societies, the idea of single-sex colleges might seem "anachronistic." But in fact top women's colleges are faring well. The reason? Women's colleges, the article explains, give female students the opportunity to be leaders. As French professor and department chair Nicole Vaget says in the article, ". . . in an academic environment free of every possibility of inequality between the sexes, women students learn to direct their intellectual potential, to develop confidence in themselves." The story also quotes Raluca Dalea '01, who says that at Mount Holyoke "a woman's capacity to lead is placed in the foreground." In addition, the article describes Mount Holyoke's campus as magnificent, reports that the number of international students at MHC is on the rise, and notes the success of such graduates as U.S. Secretary of Labor Elaine Chao '75.

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