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Swarthmore in the News September 9, 2011


The Martha's Vineyard Times

Martha's Vineyard readers consider colonialism

By Whit Griswold

September 7, 2011

Philip Weinstein has been teaching English at Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania for 40 years. Regular vacationers on the Island since 1982, he and his wife, Penny, bought a house off Lighthouse Road in Aquinnah in 1997. They are here as much as possible, in season and out, including this fall. Mr. Weinstein is now at Swarthmore half time.

Starting next week, he is offering a four-part "course" to Island readers. Four books will be examined in "Fictions of Colonial Encounter," as he calls it, one each to be discussed at town libraries in Aquinnah, Chilmark, Vineyard Haven, and Oak Bluffs.

The four books are Heart of Darkness,  (1899) by Joseph Conrad;  A Passage to India,  (1924) by E.M. Forster;  Things Fall Apart,  (1966) by Chinua Achebe; and  The Joys of Motherhood,  (1979) by Buchi Emecheta. Conrad and Forster are white British writers, writing from the vantage point of colonialists; Achebe and Emecheta are black Nigerian writers who write from the perspective of being colonized. The causes and effects of colonialism are central to all four books.

"The basic premise of the course is this: what does it look and feel like from 'the other side' as well as from 'your side'?" Mr. Weinstein wrote in an email over the weekend. "I'm committed more to exploring the different realities at play than to judging one stance by way of another. This doesn't mean that judgment is not involved, but that judgment needs to pass through the experiential optic of the other; otherwise, it is mere pre-judgment."

"I want to emphasize that these meetings are envisaged as discussions as well as lectures," Mr. Weinstein said. "I will do my best to introduce each of the works by laying out something of its context, its narrative procedures, and its significance. Thereafter I want to help the audience develop its own conversation about each of the books, so that our 90 minutes together becomes a learning and sharing experience. For this to happen, folks need to read the books in advance of the meetings." (more)


The Washington Post

A new way to remember Sept. 11

By Lynne Steuerle Schofield

September 7, 2011

Ten years ago Sunday, I lost my mother, Norma Lang Steuerle, when American Airlines Flight 77 was flown into the Pentagon.

Much has changed in the world and in my life over the past decade. I got married and have two children. I have a job I love. Despite the events of 10 years ago, I feel very lucky. But I also feel conflicted.

Every year on Sept. 11, and especially in the lead-up to this 10th anniversary, I am invited to events aimed at reflection and remembrance of that horrible day. I am grateful to the many people who make these thoughtful and well-organized events happen. Through them, I have felt the nation's care and concern for me and for my family.

But I can't help but wonder if this is really the best way, now, to remember my mother and the thousands of others who died on Sept. 11, 2001. Yes, some family members and first responders are still living with illness, health problems and other horrors of Sept. 11, and for some, such events might help to heal their emotional wounds and soothe their physical pain.

Here's the other side, though, for me anyway: Sometimes I feel I am asked to attend my mother's funeral again and again, year after year.

I wonder what my mom, a clinical psychologist, would think of these memorials. Would she tell me to look back less and look ahead more? Would she remind me that the final stage of grief is acceptance and renewal?

Or would she recommend that, next year on Sept. 11, we try to erect a different kind of memorial to those we lost, by participating in an event aimed at making the world more compassionate, safer and more equitable?

What if we all spent the 11th anniversary of the attacks reflecting on what we admired most about our lost loved ones and trying to emulate those ideals? (more)

Or what if we spent time building not another structure in memorial but, instead, building our relationships with others? Or raising money for our favorite charity?

When I reflect on my mother's ideals, I think of her compassion. She spent her life counseling and listening to others. She became a friend, and she helped her clients work toward honorable solutions for their lives. She believed that people and institutions could change, but also that change takes incredibly hard work and requires getting everyone on board.

I believe that is true for all of us - as citizens of our country and our world. If we want the world to be more compassionate, safer and more equitable, we have to work to make that happen. We all have to be on board. We should reflect on the characteristics of our loved ones that we want to keep alive, and then we must behave that way.

So next year on Sept. 11, please don't invite me only to remembrance ceremonies. Instead, let's make our ceremonies ones that include reflection and action.

Let us as a country move into the final stage of grief, toward acceptance and renewal. Reflect on what you want the world to be in 10 years and then look forward and act on those reflections. Transform those reflections into reality.

The writer is an assistant professor of statistics at Swarthmore College and vice chair of the board of the nonprofit organization Americans for Informed Democracy. 


Indiana Daily Student News

Chinese program appoints director

By Sydney Murray

September 6, 2011

Vivian Ling was recently named interim director of IU's Chinese Flagship Program, which helps students gain extensive knowledge of the language.

Ling was born in China and moved to the United States when she was 11 years old.

Originally a math major at Swarthmore College, she went to graduate school to study east Asian studies and fell in love with the subject. Ling has been teaching Chinese for more than 40 years.

"I feel we have the support of the highest level of the administration. All the factors are coming together. It seemed to me like an opportunity I couldn't pass up," Ling said.

Forty-two undergraduates are enrolled in the flagship program, and two are enrolled in the newly created graduate program. Out of only 10 Chinese Flagship Programs in the nation, IU's is the only one with a graduate program.

"It's like Chinese language on steroids," said Michael Robinson, chair of the east Asian languages and cultures department. "It's a whole different idea about language learning. It's one of these skills that is applicable everywhere."

..."We have something here that is quite unique, and we just need to get the word out," Ling said. "There's a lot of pressure for the students that get into this, but they find it very worthwhile."

Ling said she hopes the program can move past the College of Arts and Sciences so professionals also have the chance to learn Chinese at an accelerated level.

..."I want some direct contact with the students," Ling said. "They are working so hard and are very inspiring. You want to do everything to help them succeed."


The Philadelphia Inquirer

After 9/11 in the arts: More reality, but also more fantasy

By John Timpane; Inquirer Staff Writer

September 4, 2011

Looking back at the arts over any 10 years is a forbidding task - all the more so if the topic is the arts since 9/11. But if any decade deserves such an effort, this one does.

What if the undeniable horrors of 9/11 drove the arts more toward reality? And yet at the same time pushed them more toward fantasy? What if we were simultaneously running away from the world and into their arms?

Filmmaker Morgan Spurlock says there was a turn toward reality, in what artists created and in what audiences wanted: "9/11 certainly fed a hunger among people to know more." About everything. Jolted awake, we saw we were part of the world, part of history, and we hungered to know both better.

Poet and scholar Nathalie F. Anderson of Swarthmore sees it differently, as "an era of fantasy, of magical realism, of emphatic refusals of the reality-based world." She's speaking of poetry and literature, but also of popular culture. This was the decade, she notes, of Harry Potter, Avatar, the record-shattering Twilight books and movies, and True Blood.

Real or imagined? Truth or dream? Terrorist or werewolf? Ten years of both. ...





The Delaware County Daily Times (PA)

Stewart's first two goals plenty to pace Swat

Daily Times Staff

September 8, 2011

Freshman Michael Stewart scored the first two goals of his college career to pace Swarthmore to a 3-0 win over Arcadia in men's soccer action Wednesday.

Stewart found the back of the net on a breakaway for his first goals and then converted a penalty kick to keep the eighth-ranked Garnet (3-0) undefeated.

David Sterngold added the Garnet's other tally and goalkeeper David D'Annunzio made two saves to earn the clean sheet for Swarthmore.


The Delaware County Daily Times (PA)

Colleges: Famiglietti's goal sparks Swarthmore

September 7, 2011

Daily Times Staff Reports

Amber Famiglietti netted a goal in the 22nd minute to break a scoreless tie, and the Swarthmore women's soccer team cruised to a 3-0 victory over host Widener at Leslie Quick Stadium Tuesday.

Emma Sindelar made it a two-goal contest, and Amy DiPierro added an insurance tally late in regulation.


Virginia Wesleyan College Athletics

Marlins unable to overcome Swarthmore's early lead

September 3, 2011

SWARTHMORE, Pa. -- A strong second half of competition  was a bright spot Saturday for the Virginia Wesleyan College's field hockey team, but it was the Swarthmore College Garnet that finished in the spotlight with a 6-2 non-conference victory at Clothier Field.

The Garnet took control early, scoring just 1:58 into the competition on a shot by Katie Teleky (Ellicott City, Md./Centennial), assisted by Beth Johnson (Ann Arbor, Mich./Pioneer).  Four minutes later the host team took a 2-0 lead when Teleky came through with the assist for the scoring shot by Johnson.