TUESDAY • APRIL 24, 2012
THE STUDENT NEWSPAPER OF THE UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO SINCE 1892
ISSUE 40 • VOLUME 123
Philosophy program challenges rising South Side scholars Jon Catlin News Staff U of C students are turning theory into practice by serving as philosophy coaches for South Side students as part of Winning Words, a division of the Humanities department that is on track for an American Philosophical Association innovation award. Senior lecturer in philosophy Bart Schultz started the program 10 years ago to empower local students to think critically and develop philosophical analytical skills. Currently one of the few programs across the country operating in underprivileged schools according to Schultz, Winning Words has since grown from just five schools last year to encompass over 100 students at 15 South Side schools, from the elementary to high school level. Administered within the humanities division, Winning Words falls under the umbrella of Schultz’s Civic Knowledge Project, meant to facilitate community engagement. The approximately 25 graduate
and undergraduate coaches involved lead weekly discussion-based classes throughout the year. The student participants then complete a final rehearsed discussion, skit, or play to perform on campus at the end of the program to show what they’ve learned. Winning Words’s original mission was to bring the urban policy debate technique into the classroom at an earlier age, but soon shifted its approach to allow students to think conceptually rather than memorize rhetoric. “The younger students needed to be prepped too much on what to say and weren’t thinking for themselves. We ultimately concentrated on the common thread of philosophizing, with an emphasis on reflecting and thinking, not in an adversarial way, on ethical issues,” Schultz said. “As it turns out, younger people are more interested in ‘violence’ than ‘gun control.’” But can 10-year-olds really be philosophical? Schultz, who works with adult continuing education students WORDS continued on page 2
Elementary students participate in Winning Words, a program that matches undergraduate and graduate mentors with local children in weekly discussion-based classes. The outreach is meant to facilitate community engagement and empower young students to think philosophically. COURTESY OF BART SCHULTZ
Panel plots Guggenheim Fellows display diverse interests Protesters join Mexico’s future Scholarly work ranges from the Papuan language to comic memoirs in prayer for pre-election health clinics Isabella McKinley-Corbo News Contributor
Raghav Verma News Staff As the uncertain road leading to Mexico’s presidential election this July continues to wind, former government officials from the capital joined leading political theorists and commentators at International House on Saturday, where a series of panels weighed in on the future of Mexican politics, the stability of its economy, and the security of its cities. The discussion, titled Mexico Tomorrow 2012, was hosted by Mexicanos en UChicago. Delivering the keynote address was Cuauhtémoc Solórzano, a founder of Mexico’s leftist Party of the Democratic Revolution, which nearly secured a victory in the country’s 2006 presidential elections, and the former head of government of the Mexico City Federal District. Throughout his speech, governmental reform was the resounding note. “If we are to build a future of development, welfare, and expectations, of succinct progress for every Mexican, regardless of where he or she lives, where and in which family he or she is born, which of the activities she or he is dedicated to,” he said, “present Mexico has to be completely rearranged.” MEXICO continued on page 2
Temperatures in Fahrenheit - Courtesy of The Weather Channel
Clockwise from top: Guggenheim Fellowship recipients Don Kulick, Alison Bechdel, Adrian Johns, and John Cochrane. COURTESY OF DON KULICK, UCLA LIVE, ADRIAN JOHNS, AND UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO BOOTH SCHOOL OF BUSINESS
Linda Qiu Associate News Editor
Four U of C scholars will join the ranks of 177 other recipients of the Guggenheim Fellowship this year to commence and continue projects in anthropolog y, business, graphic novels, and history. Alison Bechdel, John H. Cochrane, Adrian Johns, and Don Kulick distinguished themselves from a pool of nearly 3,000 candidates by demonstrating “exceptional capacity for productive scholarship or exceptional creative ability in the arts,” according to the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation website. For Kulick and Cochrane, the fellowship funds will be one of the final steps to the culmination of years of work. A professor of anthropology in Comparative Human Development, Kulick will use his fellowship to work on a book concerning the demise of an isolated Papuan language that he has been studying since the mid-1980s. Cochrane, as a distinguished service professor at the Booth School, plans to complete a book on the fiscal foundations of inflation. He has pursued the subject generally since graduate school and can now research it in more
More than 10 days after activists were first arrested for seizing the Woodlawn Mental Health Clinic in protest of its impending closure, student and community activists assembled alongside local churches on the sidewalk of East 63rd Street yesterday for “Ministry Monday.” Later that evening, 12 additional protesters were arrested, bringing the total count to 37. Several undergraduates were included in the arrests. Five religious leaders and their congregations joined the demonstration, which began around 3 p.m. with speeches by patients and organizers. Rev. Reggie Weaver of Woodlawn’s First Presbyterian Church concluded the day’s events with a sundown prayer service. Civil rights and political figure Rev. Jesse Jackson was scheduled to lead the prayer meeting but could not attend for unspecified reasons. Leading the gathered congregants and demonstrators in prayer, Weaver gave thanks “especially for the stamina, the courage, the conviction, and the will of all the young men and women who have gathered this day and the past several weeks, standing up for the rights of equality of health care. We pray that their actions will not be in vain.” In addition to giving his support for the prolonged demonstrations, which
FELLOWS continued on page 2
WOODLAWN continued on page 2
South Siders carve up Bears, retain minor scratches » Page 12
Multicultural Greek life stomps the quad at annual show » Page 6
Maroons shoot down Cardinals
Hollywood plot distracts from accomplishments of Burmese activist » Page 6
» Page 12
THE THE CHICAGO CHICAGO MAROON MAROON || NEWS NEWS || April April 24, 13, 2012 2012
Mental Health Clinic occupiers pray for more support and fewer arrests
Fields Medal recipient among 8 honored professors Jon Catlin News Staff
Protesters set up camp Monday afternoon across the street from the Woodlawn Mental Health Clinic on East 63rd Street and South Woodlawn Avenue. The clinic is expected to close April 30th. SYDNEY COMBS | THE CHICAGO MAROON WOODLAWN continued from front
began April 12, Pastor Anthony Williams of the Good Shepherd Evangelical Lutheran Church in the southern suburb of Robbins, IL, asserted the right of activists to camp out on the vacant lot in front of the clinic without fear of arrests. The lot, according to Williams, is legally the tax-exempt property of the church he used to lead, New Revelation Lutheran Church. Williams said the closing of six of Chicago’s 12 mental health clinics, including the clinic on East 63rd Street and South
Woodlawn Avenue, is “a violent act” and the denial of access to health care is “a violation of human rights.” “The whole world is my parish. This is what I do, ministry, so I came out here to support what is a righteous and just cause,” Williams said. In addition to clergy support, activists affiliated with Occupy Chicago and RSOs UChicago Occupy, Southside Solidarity Network, and Students for Health Equity were in attendance. “Ultimately, it’s not about this clinic or all six clinics. It’s not about the 18
Fellowship recipients thankful for University’s positive influence FELLOWS continued from front
depth. Bechdel, on the other hand, envisions continuing on her current path. A celebrated cartoonist, particularly for her comic strip “Dykes to Watch Out For,” and a 2011-2012 visiting fellow at the Richard and Mary L. Gray Center for Arts and Inquiry, Bechdel plans to complete her third graphic memoir. Johns, the Allan Grant Maclear Professor in History, plans on studying the intellectual property defense industry. “[I hope to] stimulate public attention to and debate about the measures that society takes
to uphold information, and to encourage explicit reflection on how we should try to reconcile the information society with the good society,” he wrote in an e-mail. The recipients hailed the University as a positive professional influence. Kulick commended the U of C’s commitment to research in comparison to other universities that he has worked at in the past. “None of them have come close to the U of C in their commitment to, and support of, primary research,” Kulick wrote in an e-mail. “I would be a bum if it weren’t for this place,” Cochrane wrote.
CORRECTIONS » The April 13 article “Dozens arrested as
activists seize Woodlawn mental health clinic” incorrectly attributed a quotation by first-year Emma Labounty. » The April 23 article “SG Slates: Connect”
incorrectly described the Community Service Fund. » The April 17 aricle “U of C tweets its way to the online top” misspelled Jon Catlin’s name.
people already hospitalized or the people getting ready to be hospitalized or arrested. It is about our choices, our future, our stories. It’s about having brave conversations about what we stand for,” fourth-year protester Sophia Kortchmar said. The April 12 action which kicked off the demonstrations saw protesters barricading themselves inside the clinic, until 23 were arrested in the early hours of April 13. Advocates held a health fair that weekend and two more were arrested April 17.
Eight U of C faculty were among 220 academics elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, an interdisciplinary research organization, last Tuesday. The Chicago professors, specializing in a wide range of disciplines including music and mathematics, join an academic body of more than 4,000 scholars from around the country. “Election to the Academy is both an honor for extraordinary accomplishment and a call to serve,” Academy President Leslie C. Berlowitz said, as reported by the University News Office. “We look forward to drawing on the knowledge and expertise of these distinguished men and women to advance solutions to the pressing policy challenges of the day.” Founded in 1780 by John Adams, John Hancock, and other foundational figures to recognize scholarly excellence, the Academy now serves as one of the nation’s leading policy research centers. Its notable former members include George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Winston Churchill, and Albert Einstein. Among the U of C’s Fellows is Ngô Bao Châu, Francis and Rose Yuen distinguished service professor of mathematics. Ngô won the prestigious Fields Medal in
2010 for solving a long-vexing problem in the Langlands program, an ambitious unified theory encompassing several areas of mathematics. On the other end of the quad in the Department of Music, world-renowned contemporary composer Augusta Read Thomas, university professor of composition in music and the College, also was elected to the Academy. Classical vocal ensemble Chanticleer won a Grammy in 2000 for their album, “Colors of Love,” which featured two of Thomas’s compositions. Martha Feldman, chair of the Department of Music and a historian of Italian music, was elected as well. The University’s professional schools also had several faculty appointed. From the Booth School of Business, microeconomics professor Marianne Bertrand, whose research has included work on racial discrimination and CEO compensation, and Luigi Zingales, who co-founded the Financial Trust Index, which tracks consumer faith in private financial institutions, joined the academy. Meanwhile, the Divinity School’s Bruce Lincoln, a sitting member on the Committee on Medieval Studies, and Paul Mendes-Flohr, a professor of modern Jewish history, also were elected, as was the Law School’s David Weisbach.
Distinguished panel covers Mexican crime, economy in context of pending election MEXICO continued from front
According to Eduardo Arnal, the Consul of Mexico in Chicago, the timing of the conference could not have been better. “With elections in Mexico a little more than two months away, it’s hard to imagine a better time than this to hold a conference about the future of Mexico. It’s also refreshing to have such a forum where you can find very diverse perspectives,” he said.
The first of the conference’s three panels, titled “Elections, Democracy, and Equality,” was led by Jesus Marquez, a Mexican scholar and political analyst as a frequent commentator on the Mexican media, and Gina Zabludovksy, a political science researcher at Mexican National University. “I hoped to bring the interest of Mexican politics and present situations and how women in Mexico and in the world have changed in
the last years,” Zabludovsky said in an interview. While Zabludovsky sought to depict a fresh and changing landscape in Mexican politics—and to trumpet women’s role in it—Marquez insisted the contrary. “I think I would use the word ‘boring’ as the basic mark of this campaign. I think we are living in the most boring elections that we’ve lived in the recent history of Mexico,” Marquez said.
After the first panel was one titled “Poverty, Economy, and Development,” followed by one on “Security, Organized Crime, and Human Rights.” Jonathan Grabinsky, president of the association, pointed out the large Mexican and Hispanic populations at the University, saying that prior to the conference, there wasn’t enough discussion of issues in Mexico and that disparity inspired the event.
Schultz: “Philosophy strongly pushes against the current education system” WORDS continued from front
as well, answers with an enthusiastic “yes.” “Young people are extremely receptive to abstract thinking. Impossible questions are ones that kids are actually very capable of asking,” Schultz said. By encouraging those “impossible questions” and independent thinking, the program aims to fill a void left by Chicago Public Schools, which cannot facilitate student questions as well as a personalized setting can. “Philosophy strongly pushes back against the current education system. It forces you to slow down, question things, and think for yourself. These are things that CPS just can’t deliver,” Schultz said.
He added that particularly for students from underprivileged families, Winning Words can be an outlet for a student’s neglected opinion. “What amazes me most is how aware the students are of their own circumstances. But nobody listens to kids when they do have serious thoughts and questions. It’s not enough to have the occasional school assembly–students need to think things through themselves,” Schultz said. Winning Words presented a philosophical discussion between fourth-graders at the annual American Philosophical Association conference in February, led by second-year Winning Words coach and
student coordinator Shayan Karbassi. “You’d be amazed how capable these students are, though they’re so often dismissed by adults. One of my fourth-graders often talks as if he were a UChicago student,” Karbassi said. They are applying for an award in June from the Association and will hear back about a month later. According to Schultz, they will have a much easier time showing innovation than more traditional programs with older students. Winning Words is also establishing a journal that will showcase philosophical and creative work by its students to be distributed online, on campus, and to the schools in the
program. “Ideally this program should be emulated by other universities in other cities. This journal is an opportunity for us to widen our reach and to show that this kind of program is really possible and also necessary for our community,” Karbassi said. Though Winning Words students learn about great philosophers and their ideas, the program ultimately emphasizes the philosophic method over any specific knowledge or content. As Shultz described Winning Words’s mission, “Our ultimate goal is to get young people to appreciate the value of inquiry for its own sake, to simply enjoy a great book and a great conversation.”
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Editorial & Op-Ed APRIL 24, 2012
A change in greenery The University must do more to fund and encourage student efforts at promoting sustainability The student newspaper of the University of Chicago since 1892 JORDAN LARSON Editor-in-Chief SHARAN SHETTY Managing Editor COLIN BRADLEY Managing Editor DOUGLAS EVERSON, JR Senior Editor SAM LEVINE Senior Editor HARUNOBU CORYNE News Editor REBECCA GUTERMAN News Editor GIOVANNI WROBEL News Editor EMILY WANG Viewpoints Editor AJAY BATRA Viewpoints Editor CHARNA ALBERT Arts Editor HANNAH GOLD Arts Editor TOMI OBARO Arts Editor DANIEL LEWIS Sports Editor VICENTE FERNANDEZ Sports Editor MATTHEW SCHAEFER Sports Editor BELLA WU Head Designer KEVIN WANG Online Editor ALICE BLACKWOOD Head Copy Editor DON HO Head Copy Editor JEN XIA Head Copy Editor DARREN LEOW Photo Editor JAMIE MANLEY Photo Editor
Whether it’s “being” green, “thinking” green, or “going” green, the global environmental movement has become a constant presence in our lives. This presence will be amplified in the next few days as the U of C celebrates Earth Week. The week will showcase a wide array of events culminating with Friday’s EarthFest, featuring local and organic foods, multiple raffles, and herb planting. However, despite this green blossoming on campus, the University continues to leave students interested in sustainable initiatives short of both greenbacks and support. A look at the Resources section of the University’s Sustainability Web site is hardly encouraging. Links to the CAPS and Chicago Studies sites turn up a list of campus sustainability resources that are by and large only loosely related to environmentalism. A student looking for funding or support for a sustainable initiative
would have virtually no recourse on campus. The University would do well to redress this imbalance in the manner of its peer institutions. Yale, for example, boasts a sustainability microloan fund that offers applicants a loan of up to $25,000, as well as constructive feedback from the adjudicating panel for all promising ideas. Providing institutional funding and guidance would go a long way toward demonstrating that the University is serious in its intent to create a more sustainable community. As long as such options are not available, however, there are some unique and intriguing opportunities on campus worthy of students’ notice and effort. The Environment, Agriculture, and Food Working Group, headed by U of C economics lecturer Sabina Shaikh and largely sustained by U of C students, is one such opportunity: Students of diverse interests contribute to this scholarly work-
ing group to answer questions that span multiple environmental concerns. Moreover, a number of student organizations are already engaged in sustainable efforts in the community. Students at the University Community Service Center put hundreds of hours into green-related service. Various RSOs engage in garden-building and water bottle-collecting projects, and a recent winner of the CCI Innovation and Entrepreneur contest—Entom Foods—aims to mass-produce insect eatables to cut the environmental cost of meat consumption. It’s fair to say, however, that such initiatives are generally the work of a select few already involved in environmental advocacy. Along the lines of remedying this, another option is for students to take classes that deal with environmental issues. The Sustainability Office, now only four years old, lists over 100 courses in the U of C catalog that cover
such material, and many lie outside of the Environmental Studies department. Taking a class would provide a foundation for students to make educated initial forays into environmental engagement. These suggestions aren’t given because we need the green movement; in many ways, it needs us. Many U of C students are uniquely capable of contributing through academic research and social activism. Ilsa Flanagan, director of the U of C’s Office of Sustainability, notes, “It’s clear that our students have deep interests in sustainability, and this is a powerful way for them to engage in the issue while enriching their education.” So, whether or not it happens during Earth Week, the University should find a way to foster these interests and empower Maroons to be as green as they can.
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Personnel firewall Employers demanding Facebook passwords cross a long-blurring line
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By Anastasia Golovashkina Viewpoints Columnist
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Jobs and Facebook: Two things that most readers can agree are (or have recently become) a necessity for remaining relevant in today’s society. But privacy concerns have beset Zuckerberg’s online behemoth since its launch in 2004. Back in its Ivy League days, those concerns largely focused on the fact that the site was founded by hacking Harvard’s online housing network. Since then, the problems have grown more complex, and though the site has been quick to answer common queries like, “How do I know what I’m sharing?” and “Is it better to post these nudes on my wall or my timeline?”, there are still scores of privacy issues over which Facebook simply has no control. Topping the list of such concerns in recent years has been the topic of teen password sharing. In a 2011 study by the Pew Internet and American Life Project, researchers found that 30 percent of teens report sharing their passwords with “a friend, boyfriend, or girlfriend.” Like the sharing of locker combination for kids or swapping apartment keys for adults, password sharing has become “a sign of trust and intimacy” for teens: a signal that this isn’t just another two-week relationship, but a true-love-together-forever thing. But teens will always be teens (read: stupid). If not passwords, then locker combinations; if not sexts, then fake
ID-laden pub crawls. On the whole, teens are far more impulsive than adults—especially teens “in love,” whose impulsiveness is at least twice that. Multiplied by 10. Squared. So what, then, gives employers the right to force these same juvenile standards on disproportionately lowincome working adults? Employers have begun requesting social media log-in information from their applicants and current employees. Notably, these aren’t top-notch, megahigh-profile institutions like the CIA or the President’s Secret Service, for which applicants are repeatedly primed to expect to sacrifice some privacy. Instead, these are employers like the Division of Corrections: They’re asking jail guards, janitors, security guards, and corrections officers like Robert Collins, who was asked to give his employer, the Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services, his Facebook log-in information as part of recertification following a four-month leave of absence he took after his mother’s death. Like Collins’s, these are almost exclusively jobs paying just over half ($29,000) of the national income average ($47,000)—occupations that attract applicants financially unable to reject a job offer even if it would infringe upon their privacy rights, however unfair and unreasonable such infringement may be. This weekend, Collins’s home state of Maryland became the first and only state to ban the practice, though many other states are currently considering similar legislation. But it’s a largely tentative “consideration”; Illinois, for example, has been “considering” its own variant of this bill since May 2011. Having passed its three readings in the House, it is now on its first reading in the Senate, making now the perfect time to tell your state senator how you feel about it.
This form of implicit but powerful class discrimination speaks to a greater, equally underpublicized issue that has an impact on anyone with any sort of social media presence past, present, or future. Though password demanding has not yet become a common practice, social network background checks have; some 91 percent of employers report that they already conduct “screenings” of applicants’ profiles, the most common ones being those on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. The fact that an entire state institution didn’t see a problem with asking for applicants’ passwords is just the tip of the iceberg. From bosses who request their personnel as “friends” (good luck rejecting or “ignoring” that one) to the legions of companies requiring staff to tweet/post/update their followers about their work with them (“I’m working on a new spread for Name of Company! #exciting”), all signs point to a much bigger concern that we should have about the turn that the inescapable work-life relationship is taking in our society. It’s not that the work-life divide is dwindling; that’s old news, and for the most part, inevitable. But work is now inviting itself over and crashing the party. LinkedIn was supposed to bridge the gap between work and social networking. In the realm of communication, business-oriented platforms for conferencing are being left for the low cost, ease, and accessibility of the social platforms provided by Skype or Google. But what if I don’t want my employer to know when I’m online? Or to know that I just listened to 149 dubstep songs, or took this photo at this concert, or follow Courtney Stodden, or read a Washington Post piece about hating my job, or overestimate my poFACEBOOK continued on page 5
In need of a mentality check Current methods of evaluation in science classes discourage hard work and learning
By Jane Huang Viewpoints Columnist This quarter, my physics class started using a Web site where students can post questions anonymously about course material or homework, after a TA suggested that students might feel intimidated asking questions during office hours or through e–mail. While I appreciate that the course instructor and TAs are putting effort into facilitating communication, the use of this new technolog y raises the question of why students would feel reluctant to ask for help in the first place. After all, the students in my Hum and Sosc classes have usually been keen on talking to professors and writing interns if they want a point clarified or to test out ideas. Why would attitudes toward requesting help be different in science classes? My highly unscientific opinion is that the bigger problem is students’ fear of appearing unintelligent. Though this fear is hardly endemic to any major, it has often seemed to me that students SCIENCE continued on page 5
THE CHICAGO MAROON | VIEWPOINTS | April 24, 2012
An unconvincing act Foreign policy expert Michael Ledeen’s recent talk on Iran—laden with conspiracy and warmongering—bordered on the comedic Hamid Bendaas Viewpoints Contributor There are times in life when you get more than you could have ever expected. One of those times was last week when I sat in on Michael Ledeen’s talk, “How Can We Stop Iran?” sponsored by the RSO Chicago Friends of Israel. I was very excited to hear him speak, since everything in his profile assured me he was the type of person I enjoy learning from: He was a defense consultant to Reagan; he has a disconcerting infatuation with Machiavelli; he even has his own “doctrine” attributed to him, one which goes something like, “Every 10 years or so, the United States needs to pick up some small, crappy little country and throw it against the wall, just to show the world we mean business.” In advocating the Iraq War, he had this to say on what our aims in the Middle East ought to be: “One can only hope that we turn the region into a cauldron, and faster, please. If ever there were a region that richly deserved being cauldronized, it is the Middle East today.” I was sold. I couldn’t wait to go in and hear a professional warmonger educate me on what our future policy toward Iran ought to be. But what followed
surpassed my every expectation. I look back on his comments very fondly, as one might their first kiss or high school graduation. On the suicide bombings and IEDs that killed American soldiers in Iraq, he informed us that Iranians were in fact responsible, and that “Everyone knows it.” Yes, everyone knows it, but no one is willing to say it—this was a major point of Ledeen’s talk. That is, everyone in Washington knows that Iran is responsible for committing acts of terrorism against the USA, but in the hopes of cutting a deal with Iran, no one is willing to say so publicly. He went on to give more details of Iranian mischief that “everyone knows” about but which no one mentions. He noted anti-American nations in South America that are occasional diplomatic allies with Iran—“Venezuela, Bolivia… sometimes Brazil”—and drew attention to the fact that mosques have recently been built in those countries. Islam, of course is “not indigenous” to the region, so why the sudden sprouting up of mosques? “They are terrorist training centers.” I could hardly contain my laughter upon the realization that Ledeen wasn’t just a regular boring professional warmonger; he was also an
amateur conspiracy theorist—a Renaissance man indeed. There was also an interesting moment when Ledeen, in regards to allegations Israel has had nuclear scientists killed in the streets of Tehran, stated that these could not be true since Tehran is a “military camp” and is so heavily patrolled that residents are asked to show documentation every few blocks. During the question & answer after his talk, I asked Ledeen about this statement. I had been to Tehran a few years ago and had walked around alone and with others for hours at a time without seeing any police or military personnel, much less being stopped by them. In my month-long stay in Tehran, I saw one man get arrested. I do not know for what. I never once saw a person get stopped and asked for papers. In comparison, how many times a month do you see police stop people on this campus alone? And this is why Mr. Ledeen is only an amateur conspiracy theorist—every good conspiracy theorist knows you need to keep your lies and delusions as irrefutable as possible for the audience you’re speaking to. You never know when there might be an Iranian, or simply a mildly informed person, in your midst.
It goes without saying that I found the Maroon’s coverage of Ledeen’s talk atrocious and misleading. The article makes him sound like a voice for peace, as it reports that he advocates “a modern version of the Marshall Plan” to stop Iran. The Marshall Plan, of course, was used to keep democratic nations democratic; Iran is not democratic. What Ledeen advocates is funding and arming forces within Iran that will overthrow the current regime and set up a democratic administration. For anyone with knowledge of Iran’s history, you might recognize this as the exact policy used in the 1953 Iranian coup to put the Shah in place (though, at that time, “notcommunist and willing to sell us oil cheaply” sufficed for “democratic”), and thus as the policy directly responsible for the admittedly deplorable state of Iran today. Finally, a big “thank you” to the Chicago Friends of Israel for inserting some fun into this issue, at least for the rational among us. I fully support decisions by this and any other RSO to pass over respected and informed scholars of a subject in favor of more comedic routines. Hamid Bendaas is a first-year in the College.
“Innate intelligence” is wrongly overvalued in introductory science courses SCIENCE continued from page 4 who consider themselves “math and science people” are much more enthralled by the notion of “natural intelligence” than students from other disciplines are. My Sosc class has lately spent a lot of time earnestly discussing whether performance in math was the best indicator of intelligence. Not coincidentally, a lot of students in that class are majoring in math or something related. While it might seem convenient to define intelligence in terms of your own strengths, this practice actually proves to be a hindrance in the long run. Suppose, for instance, that you do very well in high school chemistry and conclude that you must be quite clever. Then you get to college and have a rocky start in general chemistry. Now what? You might fall into the trap of thinking that if doing well means that you’re smart, doing poorly must mean you’re dumb. Thus, asking for help is conceding defeat, rather than a way of seeking self-improvement. Consider the ways that our work is praised and critiqued in social science and humanities classes. We may be told that our arguments have insufficient evidence and use faulty logic, or that we offered surprising, insightful analysis. These comments are made with the assumption that we will learn from them and write better papers next time. The feedback you get in the future can help you assess whether you’ve succeeded. On the other hand, we’re not given very much personalized feedback—verbal or otherwise— on our work in science classes. So, when we get back our exam scores, we seek ways to put them in context. The usual approach is to compare ourselves to other people. After all, many of these classes are graded on a curve. 70 percent may be fairly good if the
Employers mustn’t misuse leverage FACEBOOK continued from page 4 tential for witty one-liners on a daily basis? Kudos, of course, to Facebook’s new custom, case-by-case share settings. But they’re just not enough. The only solution to the underlying issue is to not do any of these things. In numerous interviews about his experience, Robert Collins has stated that the job itself wasn’t the reason that he gave in to giving his password: It was pure and simple pressure. “It seemed like my compliance was compulsory,” he said. However, employers shouldn’t be exploiting their unique economic leverage to violate their employees’ privacy and to dictate their behavior outside of the workplace. People at all levels of society should be able to like their jobs and “like” whatever they want on Facebook too.
Anastasia Golovashkina is a firstyear in the College majoring in economics.
| THE CHICAGO MAROON
average is 50 percent, but not so great if the average is 80 percent. However, focusing on z-scores may lead to a sense of either complacency or defeatism. When my professors are displeased with the class average, the class usually gets a stern lecture about how we have to work harder. The class gets a higher average on the next exam, but it’s hard to tell whether the class improved as a whole or whether the exam was simply easier. Even if our raw scores go up by a lot, our z-scores may not change much. It would then be tempting to conclude that working harder doesn’t accomplish much. So, the class average falls the next quarter, and we get yet another stern lecture about how we aren’t working hard enough. Despite admonitions from professors about the necessity of working hard to do well in their courses, it is only in math and science classes that I’ve had class-
mates describe someone as “hardworking” in order to cast aspersions on his intelligence. People who perform well academically are pegged as either grinds or geniuses because apparently diligence and intelligence are mutually exclusive. However, I think the main difference between the people we perceive to be grinds and the people we perceive to be smart is simply that the former are more willing to admit how hard they work. This belief is frequently misrepresented in straw man arguments as claiming that the only difference between a typical student and someone like Carl Friedrich Gauss is a little elbow grease and a host of environmental factors, rather than “innate intelligence.” But when we’re analyzing why some students succeed as others struggle in standard first- and second-year science courses that thousands of people have taken, discussing outliers like
Gauss really isn’t relevant. It’s not as though the TAs grade us on some nebulous impression of how smart or dumb they think we are; we earn or lose points for specific skills and knowledge—drawing molecular orbital diagrams, solving Laplace’s equation, explaining the photoelectric effect, and so on. Nobody is born knowing these things. We don’t have to sit around waiting for a genie to pop up and grant us 20 extra IQ points. What’s key is setting concrete goals about what we need to learn better rather than fretting about who’s smarter than whom. The next time you feel hesitant about asking for help, remember this: There’s nothing dumb about making sure you understand something properly. In fact, one may even say that’s a smart thing to do. Jane Huang is a second-year in the College.
SUBMISSIONS The Chicago Maroon welcomes opinions and responses from its readers. Send op-ed submissions and letters to: The Chicago Maroon attn: Viewpoints 1212 East 59th Street Chicago, IL 60637 E-mail: Viewpoints@ ChicagoMaroon.com The editors reserve the right to edit materials for clarity and space. Letters to the editor should be limited to 400 words. Oped submissions, 800 words.
Trivial Pursuits APRIL 24, 2012
Multicultural Greek life stomps the quad at annual show
Phi Beta Sigma members step at the third annual Multiculural Greek Showcase. NICHOLAS RUIZ | THE CHICAGO MAROON
Lily Gordon Arts Staff They stepped, they strolled, they saluted: The brothers and sisters of various multicultural Greek fraternities and sororities, the vast majority of whom are of African American, Asian, and Latino descent, gathered on Thursday night in Hutchinson Commons Courtyard for the third annual Multicultural Greek
Showcase. Performers included not only U of C students from these organizations, but members from University of Illinois at Chicago fraternities as well. Students from other Chicago universities cheered in the audience. “It might take you a few minutes to understand what’s going on,” fourthyear Karla Martinez said to me before the show, referring to the step routines and chants that students would soon
perform. Martinez, a sister of Lambda Theta Alpha (LTA), a Latina-interest sorority, has been president of the Multicultural Greek Council for two years. There are currently eight oncampus organizations affiliated with the council, and many University of Chicago students are also involved with city chapters of multicultural sororities or fraternities. “We wanted to become something
more serious and solidified. We’re always looking to become better known on campus,” Martinez said. As president, she helped draft a constitution for the council. Through her involvement, multicultural Greek life on campus has grown. She schedules meetings and helps to plan three events every quarter—activities like fundraisers, study breaks, movie nights, community service projects, and guest speakers. The Showcase, however, is her favorite. She explained, “This event shows everybody’s pride in their organization. It’s a way of showing ‘your colors’ or ‘your organization’ to everyone, and also just a way to come out and say ‘hello’ to each other. It’s a very interactive performance.” The event started with “Roll Call,” during which all 11 participating organizations acknowledged their presence with cheering, chanting, and whistling. The audience of more than 100 formed a circle around the first performers. The show began. “That’s the Way I Like It” blared over the speakers, and the brothers of Lambda Upsilon Lambda, a Latino-interest fraternity, began to “stroll,” or perform a dance routine. The dance was evidently well-rehearsed. Next up was the University of Illinois at Chicago’s Kappa Pi Beta, an Asian-interest fraternity. After strolling, the group performed an impressive step routine—a form of percussive dance in which one’s entire body is used as an instrument. During the entire performance, the men stayed in
a circular formation, rotating with each move. Later on, three sisters of Lambda Theta Alpha performed their sorority salute, which emphasized “community, love, and respect.” Most performances began with a twoor three-minute long stroll, followed by a two- or three-minute long step dance, ending with the salute, which could last anywhere from 30 seconds to four minutes. It wasn’t uncommon for these chants to include lines like “We are the best,” and many of them retold the organization’s history. The sisters of Alpha Kappa Alpha, the oldest Greek-lettered organization established by AfricanAmerican college-educated women, even included a skit within their salute. “This is one of the reasons I decided to come [to the University of Chicago],” first-year student Elias Mechaber said. He attended the event last year during a prospective students weekend and enjoyed the enthusiasm and creativity of the performances. He was not disappointed this year— the well-rehearsed performances emanated energy and excitement, revealing the closeness of the sorority sisters and fraternity brothers. The synchronization of each step seemed to mirror these tight bonds. Second-year Matthew Lee, a brother of Lambda Phi Epsilon (an Asian-interest fraternity) and the Vice President of External Relations for the Multicultural Greek Council, spoke about the strong bonds within his GREEK continued on page 8
Hollywood plot distracts from accomplishments of Burmese activist Camden Bauchner Arts Staff Making a biopic is always a daunting task, even more so when the subject is one of the most prominent Nobel Peace Prize-winning women in history. I don’t want to say that director Luc Besson fails in this respect, but as a personal admirer of Aung San Suu Kyi, I can assure you that Besson does not come close to encompassing her greatness.
THE LADY Luc Besson Landmark Theatre
For those not familiar with Suu, she is a Burmese political activist who has helped carry the country from one of the most oppressive military regimes in the world into a process of democratic change. Suu is the daughter of revolutionary Aung San, known as the father of modern-day Burma. The Lady follows Suu (Michelle Yeoh) from her return to Burma in 1988 until her husband’s death in 1999. Along the way, Suu must struggle to lead the people of Burma to independence while she is under house arrest and struggling with the absence of her family. Upon arriving back in Burma in 1988 to take care of her sick mother, Suu takes up the responsibility of fighting the military regime and quickly becomes a source of hope in Burma. The military soon place her under house arrest, barring her from speaking in public
and keeping her away from her family. Besson chooses to center the plot around Suu’s relationship with her husband Michael Aris (David Thewlis) and sons Kim (Jonathan Ragget) and Alexander (Jonathan Woodhouse), rather than the more interesting story of Suu’s impact on modern-day Burma. In addition to the weak plot premise, Besson’s poor direction and screenwriter Rebecca Rayne’s uninspired script handicap the film. Besson fumbles with the action, which fluctuates between moving too fast and lagging. Besson, who is known as one of the most Hollywood-friendly French directors, doesn’t seem to have the patient, gentle touch needed to elevate the film beyond the simple, albeit inspiring, story it tells. At times, a sentimental, sticky score and generic dialogue cover scenes that should instead be carried by Yeoh’s emotive acting. Yeoh is fantastic as Suu, capturing her gentleness, graceful presence, and unwavering dedication. Unfortunately, Yeoh gets no help from Thewlis, whose portrayal of a man living out his final days (he’s dying of prostate cancer) is a lesson in poor acting. Suu’s two sons seem out of place: The script dedicates little time to them or their relationship with their mother. There is one redeeming scene, however, when the youngest boy, Kim, returns home to find Aris sitting on the couch, engrossed in work. Kim utters the simplistic, catchall phrase, “I miss Mom.” But these few moments of intimacy belie the generic writing that robs the tale of Aung San Suu Kyi of its inherent integrity. When it seems like the tale of
Besson’s new film focuses more on Suu’s family than her political achievements. COURTESY OF MAGALI BREGAR
Suu is going to take off, as Yeoh’s first speech promises, Rayne muddies the film with bland dialogue. And despite his history with action films, Besson seems hesitant to pick up the pace. Besides Yeoh, the other high note is cinematographer Thierry Arbogast (She’s So Lovely, The Fifth Element), whose chromatic-inspired shooting captures the beauty of the Burmese landscape while providing strong visual contrast throughout. Suu is often dressed in a lightly colored anyi (blouse) and matching longyi (skirt), the colors jumping out onscreen, emblems of Suu’s
inner radiance and gentle demeanor. Other moments provide visual relief from the muddied plot. In one of The Lady’s most powerful scenes, supporters of Suu’s political party, which has just won an election, flood Suu’s solitary compound, donning military guards with flower necklaces along the way. This visual metaphor implies that the guards, dressed in traditional green uniforms with red bandanas, are not simply tools of an oppressive regime, but rather members of the Burmese community. The menagerie of colors not only creates a beautiful composi-
tion but also conveys a sentiment that Suu herself believes in strongly, that all Burmese citizens are intertwined. In 21st century film, it is all too common for directors to take the easy way out, especially when they expect the plight of the protagonist to lead the story. Here, the movie does not do Suu justice. I found myself wanting more of Suu the hero and less of Suu the mother. It is hard to say any film could do one of the most inspiring women in history justice, but it would have been nice to see someone really try.
THE CHICAGO MAROON | ARTS | April 24, 2012
Historical exhibit commemorates Chinatown centennial Angela Qian Arts Staff Located on a side street, out of the way of cramped grocery stores, karaoke bars, and dim sum restaurants, is the ChineseAmerican Museum of Chicago, home to Chinatown Centennial 2012, a new exhibit that commemorates 100 years of Chinatown history. Coinciding with Asian Heritage Month, the exhibit explores the development of Chicago’s Chinatown and the growing local culture of Chinese-Americans.
CHINATOWN CENTENNIAL 2012 Chinese-American Museum of Chicago 238 West 23rd Street
The first-floor exhibit in this unassuming building on West 23rd Street focuses on the general history of immigration and urban development in Chinatown. The first few displays highlight the rivalry between business competitors, the Hip Sing Association and the On Leong Association. The latter eventually founded South Side Chinatown in 1912 around Cermak and Wentworth, making 2012 Chinatown’s centennial. Plaques and photographs mounted on the wall show the progression of Chinese immigrants settling in Chicago since the mid-1800s. They began
as laundromat or grocery store owners, but gradually gained access to higher education and were able to enter more lucrative professions. Once they obtained licenses for practicing shoemaking and engineering and became business owners in these fields, the Chinatown district made huge strides. Photographs comparing the old Chinatown to today’s Chinatown are also on display. The photos show buildings that have long since been demolished to make way for the expansion of a new CTA line. One display case is filled with mahjong sets and other signs that were used to discreetly designate secret gambling dens. Another contains a picture of Won Kow, the only restaurant still in business from the original Chinatown. The exhibit also details prominent Chinatown mayors as well as explanations of how they maintained dignified relations with the rest of the city. A makeshift movie theater in the center of the space combines a simple playback video with lighting on various objects in the exhibit, like clothes and herbs. Other objects and displays show the humble Chinese laundromats or herb stores that many Chinese families owned before later generations moved into more professional fields. The 16 minute video uses family photographs and voices of Chinatown residents to paint the story of the first immigrants to the East and West Coasts of Amer-
ica and their subsequent migration to the friendlier Midwest. It traces the history of Chinese immigrants up to the current generation. The second-floor exhibit takes a more personal approach to the history of Chinatown, focusing on the family associations that sprouted up to provide a supportive community for those settlers with the same surnames. The exhibit also highlights the effect of the Exclusion Acts on Chinese immigration, showing the many ways that immigrants were separated from their families, and how “paper sons” lied their way into America. At the same time, the diversification of Chinatown’s culture, which is no longer simply a reflection of Chinese tradition, is apparent in its dominant modern-day architectural style—a hodgepodge of faux-Chinese forms from the garbled minds of architects who may never have laid eyes on real Chinese architecture. The display also shows how the Chinese community became a valuable ally to the U.S. during and after World War II, when they were no longer being alienated and degraded. One case is filled with the badges, honors, and photos of Chinese veterans from Chicago. These badges serve as a powerful reminder of the impact that Chinese immigrants have had on the South Side of Chicago, an impact that tends to be overlooked. This exhibit is a fitting homage to Asian Heritage Month.
“My Chinatown: Stories from Within,” a 16-minute video about the people of Chinatown is part of “Chinatown Centennial 2012,” an exhibit at the Chinese-American Museum of Chicago. COURTESY OF THE CHINESE-AMERICAN MUSEUM
A little (cheap) night music Music may be the universal language, but it doesn’t all cost the same. Sometimes it’s a few bucks for an iTunes album, blasting out of $10 headphones in a runner’s ears. Sometimes it’s 300 dollars for a ticket to sit before an ornate stage where Natalie Dessay may or may not be desecrating Verdi (this past weekend the noted soprano dropped out of a La Traviata production due to a cold). That’s a pretty black-and-white view of it, of course. Upscale New Yorkers at the Met may have a beloved pair of earbuds under their pillows; everyone knows the difference between live and recorded music. But it is telling that as seasonticket-holders at symphonies and opera houses dwindle (or rather, given their median age, die out), more and more classical music companies are going under. The long-standing Lincoln Center institution New York City Opera has all but kicked the bucket, having vastly reduced the scale of its 2012-2013 season and relocated some of its productions. This doesn’t mean that music as an industry is dying out, as falling CD sales might suggest. Thousands of fans still flock to music festivals to listen to live renditions of their favorite songs, and tickets can cost hundreds—can be, in fact, more expensive than opera tickets. Many argue that the opportunity to see multiple bands in a single day is a better value than seeing one operatic performance for around the same price. But does the desire to get the most bang for the musical buck explain the nationwide fall of classical music companies? And should this demise be hailed as the end of an elitist institution and an entry point for a younger generation’s tastes? Also, does anyone care? These are the questions being posed on music blogs and in the pages of The New Yorker—they are a continuation of a longtime argument in
the wake of the increasing divide between classical and “popular” music crowds. There are plenty of proposed solutions, but whether this musical strife is even a problem is still up for debate. Some have touted so-called “crossover-classical” music as the emblem of a merging of the two worlds. Torch-bearers for this new generation include young composers like Nico Muhly, who collaborates with artists like Sufjan Stevens, and popular groups such as The Knife, who in recent years have written an electro-infused opera. Perhaps there already is a solution. Some institutions have recently started hiring “celebrity” conductors and performers to draw the masses, who ordinarily wouldn’t shell out cash for a humdrum rendition of Brahms. Indianapolis, for example, which usually doesn’t compete with the other metropolitan music
capitals, recently hired the young Polish maestro Krzysztof Urbanski to head its symphony. And established stars like Lang Lang and Plácido Domingo always ensure a sellout show wherever they happen to be performing. Still, the high ticket prices of these celebrity shows won’t draw any student-aged (or student-budgeted) crowds. At a school like the U of C, which has no music performance major or conservatory, live music doesn’t have much of a presence. Despite the consistency of the student ensembles in the music department, crowds at their events can be depressingly small—at one of the University Symphony’s concerts last quarter, the numbers of empty seats in Mandel Hall wasn’t indicative of the excellent program and performances. It’s surprisingly easy to find, and attend, concerts on campus. Every Monday, for
example, the music department hosts a Noontime Concert Series in Fulton Recital Hall, all free and always featuring one of the student ensembles. In May, professional ensembles-in-residence eighth blackbird and the Pacifica Quartet will give performances of graduate students’ compositions. Rockefeller Chapel hosts quarterly choral performances, with prices rarely exceeding 20 dollars. Even off-campus there’s plenty to do, classical-music-wise. The Lyric Opera of Chicago offers 20-dollar student tickets for its normally expensive shows (it’s even hosting the ubiquitous Lang Lang come May). Some smaller companies are also trying to gain a foothold in the music market, appealing to younger theater-goers. Chicago Opera Theater, for example, puts on three productions a year, often of modern or updated works. It is planning
Left: World-renowned concert pianist Lang Lang. COURTESY OF DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHONE Right: Swedish band The Knife’s second studio album Deep Cuts. COURTESY OF RABID RECORDS
a Philip Glass opera, The Fall of the House of Usher, for its upcoming season, a show that should draw younger crowds, especially given its 25 dollar tickets. In the midst of the fiery classical-versus-popular debate, the arguments over high prices and celebrity conductors, the best solution for students remains simple: Take advantage of the wide spectrum of musical offerings available at student prices while you still can. An operatic soprano and a rock band at a festival will probably never sound the same, and trying to justify using up all your savings on one or the other is impossible. Take a break from studies sometime soon and check out a concert, no CTA trip needed. Few people have an endless budget, but with all the free concerts available on and around campus, everyone can pretend.
THE CHICAGO MAROON | ARTS | April 24, 2012
Minority students seek alternative Greek life
Chicago Manual of
by Jessen O’Brien
From hairline to hemline
Model wears Fall 2012 Ready-to-Wear Crop by David Peck. COURTESY OF DAVID PECK
“Hey girl, you got a fine mullet.” Nope, don’t hear that one often—at least not in reference to the tiered mane made infamous by Billy Ray Cyrus. However, the mullet is making a comeback, though (thankfully) in a different form this time: the hemline. Dresses, skirts, shirts, even jackets are cropping up and hanging low this season, as the clash between mini and maxi has closets everywhere locked in a stalemate. Though the businessin-front-party-in-back style has graced runways for some time now, the look has recently begun to trickle into more accessible shops, and I’m all for this one. Chicago spring is, needless to say, a bit confusing. I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve sweated the day away in a chunky sweater because the dark, body-bending wind outside my window was in fact blowing a humid 74 degrees. And we’ve all come across at least one girl who, in celebration of the sun’s appearance (the sun!), chose to wear a thigh-skimming dress, unaware of the fact that she was asking for six hours of numb-kneed discomfort. So what, then, do we put on our bodies while we wait for mother nature to pick a side?! Enter: the mullet. Ok, this might be taking the idea of transitional dressing a bit too literally, but you have to admit, it makes sense. Slip on a pair of tights and you’re set for a cool day; if it’s hot, hang free and give those jean-suffocated shins a break. Pair a
mulleted skirt with just about anything, because you’ve got all your bases covered (though I’ve got to advise against putting any two mullet-cut pieces together; double-mulleting might be worse than double-deniming or even—gulp, this exists—double-velouring). In the wake of the fashion week surge, we can take a few notes from the runway. First, prints. With a hemline as striking as this, flashy patterns can be a bit overwhelming, so keep it simple (The Fall 2012 Ready-to-Wear line from Crop by David Peck provides some lovely examples of clean patterns and muted colorblocking). Second, length. As is true of the original hairstyle, no two mullets are exactly the same. Some mullet-cuts, like the ones Stella McCartney has been cranking out for several years, give a full-length sweep in the back, while others, like the short shift dresses by Jean-Pierre Braganza, offer just a little jump in the levels. However you decide to wear your mullet, don it with pride (never thought I’d say that). Cross your fingers that short skirt weather will get here soon, but while you’re waiting, hang on to a little bit of the cool air that you know you’ll be missing by July. Though the original mullet passed out of sight pretty shortly after it made its creeptastically silky appearance, I think this new one will have us all singing “Achy Breaky Heart” for a while. At least until the awkward leg tans set in.
GREEK continued from page 6 fraternity, which caused him to join in autumn 2010. “I just felt a sense of closeness. The brothers reached out to me originally and invited me to events. I felt welcomed,” he said. Not only does Lee feel a connection with the brothers of the University of Chicago chapter of Lambda, but his activity in the organization has opened the doors to other relationships nationwide. “Every spring and Thanksgiving break, the brothers of Lambda go on a road trip and stay at many different Lambda chapter houses along the way.” Martinez also explained her decision to join a sorority on campus, “I knew I wanted to join a sorority coming here; it was just a matter of which one. Finding LTA, the shoe fit. We shared ambitions, interests, and a lot of the same struggles of being a person of color on campus.” During the performances, students cheered for one other, regardless of their affiliation. Fourth-year Diamon Lockett, a sister of Alpha Kappa Alpha, an African-American sorority, enjoyed the Showcase because she had the opportunity to learn about the different cultures and histories of other organizations. “The Greeks are very supportive of each other,” she said. She performed in the first Showcase in 2010. The event ended with both audience members and performers crowding the dance floor to celebrate the end of an evening full of excitement, pride, and an increased understanding of each other.
THE CHICAGO MAROON | ARTS | April 24, 2012
Death Cab gives you a reason to stay
Sensitive rocker guys pierce your soul with their eyes. COURTESY OF GRAND HOTEL VAN CLEEF
Lindsay Warren Arts Staff Last Monday night, Death Cab for Cutie took over the Chicago Theatre for part one of their two-day stint in our fair city. The show sold out, but the filled seats didn’t prevent the relatively
chill audience from enjoying the sensory details (even though the Chicago Theatre’s acoustics are such that artists can actually hear what people yell, if you’re into that kind of thing). Even on a weeknight with a 9 a.m. discussion section the next morning, the experience definitely merited the time and reasonable ticket price.
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The night’s musical stylings began with an opening set by the band Low. Without knowing anything about the band before hearing them live, their sound could be quickly categorized as both distinctive and complementary to DCFC. Somehow the slow ballads called to mind a roadtrip video montage, an indie film soundtrack, or some combination of the two. That or a really high-quality prom band backing up a gym floor of slow-dancing couples. Although it wasn’t a particularly electrifying introduction to the band, they performed well and were intriguing enough to look back into for that summer road-trip playlist you may or may not be making as you “study.” After WXRT Radio’s requisite introduction and pumping up of the crowd, we got our first taste of the DCFC and Magik*Magik Orchestra collaboration with a Ben Gibbard & Orchestra rendition of “Passenger Seat” that transitioned into a full DCFC & Orchestra version of “Different Names for the Same Thing.” And it was good. Thankfully, the friend I attended with had given me a crash course on DCFC discography (beyond the approximately three songs I had known before buying a ticket), so I had a moderate idea of what was happening. Had that not been the case, though, the music definitely sounded beautiful enough that sitting there and basking in the gloriousness of Ben’s voice would have been sufficiently satisfying. In fact, Death Cab for Cutie may have achieved one of the closest approximations to album-quality audio that can be found in a live performance, which is always refreshing to find at a concert. Aside from that lovely revelation, there were still many other highlights worth noting. For instance, Magik*Magik Orchestra’s presence meant that we had Death Cab for Cutie awesomeness plus harmonizing strings. This was an exponential improvement over already great music. Ben Gibbard’s little microphone dance wasn’t exactly an integral part of the concert, but watching him shuffle in place throughout most
of his singing was just adorable. Also, a special shout-out to Nick Harmer, Death Cab’s bass player, for just playing extremely well. My personal favorite moment, though, came when the music was so calming that I was about to nod off. And then I snapped to attention because they were playing “Soul Meets Body” and throwing a light show of flowers across the ceiling. Always a good thing to wake up to. Like most things in life, there were points during the concert that fell somewhere in between happy and sad. “I Will Follow You Into the Dark” consisted solely of Ben, an acoustic guitar, and some strategically placed violin accompaniment. Absolutely gorgeous, but also tragic. Speaking of which…so much possible emotion. It’s probably a safe bet that most of the audience had a great time and didn’t sit there sobbing quietly, but it was the kind of situation where people could easily have been a few sad memories away from bawling. Although it took my friend pointing it out for me to notice, a semi-downside of the concert was Death Cab’s lack of major audience interaction. They were relatively responsive to the things people yelled during quieter moments, and what they did say was amusingly witty, but they remained quiet for the most part. But as long as you didn’t go with the intention of starting a philosophical discussion/ making Ben forget all about Zooey Deschanel, it didn’t create a big problem. There was also a noted absence of “I Will Possess Your Heart.” Clearly the band couldn’t play through their entire works, but if they were taking requests, that would’ve been a nice inclusion. That being said, the experience was both relaxing and fun as a T-shirt-and-jeans kind of night with an amazing soundtrack and a charming light show. If they come back to the area before your graduation date and you’re into excellent indie rock, definitely find your way to one of their shows. Because now that I’ve heard them one time, I need them so much closer.
THE CHICAGO MAROON | SPORTS | April 24, 2012
UAA PREVIEW BILLY WHITMORE Third-year middle distance runner Billy Whitmore has been blowing away the competition all year, and hopes to continue his triumphs at the UAA Championship. Whitmore posted the fastest time of any UAA runner this season in the 10,000-meter on April 6 at the Chicagoland Championships with a time of 30:18.56. Whitmore will not only be chasing a UAA Championship, he will also be aiming for the 10,000-meter UAA record, currently held by another Maroon, Tom Haxton, who set the mark back in 2004. Whitmore already owns the third-best record on the Chicago honor rolls.
PAIGE PELTZER Fourth-year jumper and sprinter Paige Peltzer will be looking to end her Chicago career with a bang at the UAA Championships. Peltzer posted the second-best high jump in the UAA this season at the DePaul University Invitational on April 20 with a mark of 5’ 5.75”, just slightly behind Case Western’s Erin Hollinger, who sits at first with a mark of 5’ 7. Peltzer already owns the Maroon record for the high jump, but will be looking to use the last meet of her UAA career, not only to reset it, but also to claim a UAA Championship in the process.
After a dominating season, fourth-year Kendra Higgins heads into the UAA Championship focused on a title. The six-time All-American and twotime UAA MVP will also be looking to improve upon her conference record of 2-1 during championship play. This season, Higgins has won two matches against UAA opponents, both in the No. 1 position. She beat Case’s Erika Lim 6-0, 6-1, and Wash U foe Natalie Tingir, 6-2, 6-2. Her lone conference loss came against Emory’s Gabrielle Clark. Higgins will be looking to help shoulder the Maroons to their first UAA title since 2010.
KENDRA HIGGINS No. 1 singles player and fourth-year Troy Brinker hopes to translate his past success in the UAA Championship into a strong showing as a No. 1 seed in this year’s tournament. The twotime UAA Athlete of the Week went 3-0 against conference opponents last year from the No. 3 position. After being promoted to the No. 1 spot this season, Brinker collected a threeset win over Case opponent Eric Klawitter. He has also lost three times in the No. 1 spot, however. Brinker will call upon his experience in his attempt to finish his UAA career in satisfying fashion, against the best the conference has to offer.
DELIVERY! ©2011 JIMMY JOHN’S FRANCHISE, LLC ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
THE CHICAGO MAROON | SPORTS | April 24, 2012
As postseason looms, a second-place finish Men’s Track
Jake Walerius Associate Sports Editor
Fourth-year Tyler Calway runs hurdles during the Chicagoland Outdoor track meet earlier this month. COURTESY OF DAVE HILBERT
Chicago took a relaxing final step toward this weekend’s conference championship at the DePaul Invitational last Friday and Saturday. The Maroons won two out of their three dual matchups at DePaul, coming out on top against Chicago State (266–132) and UIC (243–175), but falling to DePaul (206–199). On paper, this was one of the Maroons’ toughest meets of the season. They were facing off against three DI schools, all of which have beaten Chicago this season already, in a dual format that gives athletes nowhere to hide. In reality, however, this was probably the most relaxed meet the Maroons have competed in all season, with all four teams looking ahead to their respective conference championships. “It was a great meet to be in before conference—subdued and quick,” fourthyear thrower Daniel Heck said. “It gave everyone a chance to compete and test themselves in a friendlier meet where people could experiment in some different events and with some different strategies.” Chicago had only two event wins on the day. Heck finished first in the hammer throw with a distance of 49.75m and thirdyear Connor Ryan (42.85m) finished ahead of first-year Leon Wang (36.67m) for a Maroon one-two in the javelin. Rounding off a strong day for Chicago’s throwers, third-year Brandon Meckelberg came third in the hammer with a lifetime best effort of 45.58m and threw a season’s best in the discus (41.55m) to finish fourth. Third-year Dee Brizzolara continued his
return to form with a second-place finish in the 200-meter (22.74s). Second-year Theo Benjamin also returned from injury to finish fifth in the 200-meter (23.48s) and fourth in the 100-meter (11.61). That will come as positive news for head coach Chris Hall, who had to endure a slow and injury-ridden start to his sprinters’ season. “I’m just now feeling almost fully recovered from my knee surgery back in fall quarter,” Benjamin said. “It was hard getting back into shape but I feel that the sprinters, me included, are now in a good position going into conference.” With the sprinters getting back up to speed and the throwers hitting their form, it was a relatively quiet day for Chicago’s distance runners, who have probably been the stars of the season so far. But it was always meant to be that way. With most of those athletes competing in longer distance events next weekend, Hall ran the majority of them (15 in total) in the 1500-meter at DePaul in order to leave them best prepared for conference. That should tell you all you need to know about the Maroons’ approach last Friday and Saturday. Chicago will now turn its attention to conference. There will be nothing else to look forward to at next week’s UAA championship if the Maroons don’t perform. But, for the next few days at least, they can be happy with their final step. “I think this was a great meet before conference. Outdoor season goes by really fast, and it’s hard to get into the swing of things before conference,” Benjamin said. “A lot of our team members are beginning to reach their peak and going into conference that is naturally a great place to be.” “I think we have an all around solid team heading into conference that can do some damage.”
Hitting their stride: At DePaul Invitational, Chicago falls to Blue Demons, defeats other DI teams Women’s Track Isaac Stern Sports Contributor The South Siders continued to build momentum at their last meet before the UAA Championship despite no outstanding individual performances. In the DePaul Invitational that took place Friday and Saturday, the Maroons defeated all other teams except DePaul’s Blue Demons, besting DI programs Northwestern,
UIC, and Chicago State. In the dual-meet style competition, the Maroons defeated UIC by 28 points, Chicago State by 144 points, and a diluted Northwestern by 214 points. Chicago lost to DePaul by 70 points. Despite a strong team performance, Chicago did not perform to the best of its ability on an individual level. “This meet was definitely not the best for any [one] of us,” first-year thrower Reecie Dern said. “[However] in all events we
had multiple people place.” The Maroons left the invitational with 10 top-three finishes across all events and numerous others placed in point-scoring positions. Fourth-year jumpers Paige Peltzer and Madison Allen had strong showings and placed first in their respective events, with Peltzer reaching 1.67m in the high jump and Allen leaping 10.46m in the triple jump. Other standouts included second-place finishes from third-year Kayla McDonald and
Kmak: “A successful season for us on the field is competing in the NCAA Tournament” SOFTBALL continued from back
and bringing injured players back into the fold. Chicago’s offense shined in the first game; after getting a two-run shot past the fences from fourthyear Liz Payonk (her fourth of the year), the Maroons stacked five of their 12 hits together into a fiverun fourth inning. Fourth-year Sarah Neuhaus (7-4) picked up the win for five innings of threerun ball, and first-year Tabbatha Bohac polished the game off with two innings of three-up, threedown pitching. Hope’s offense seemed the bigger threat in the second game,
getting a runner on base in six of their seven innings at-bat. Strong defense behind Cygan, though, helped keep runners out of scoring position. The Maroons had three hits and no walks compared to the Flying Dutch’s two hits and five walks, but a sacrifice fly by fourthyear Julia Schneider in the fourth brought Carpenter home to deal Hope’s Olivia Vacik (5–7) the loss as Cygan hurled her third shutout of the year. With the pair of wins, Chicago reaches 20 wins for the third straight year, and the ninth in Kmak’s 13 seasons as head coach. The benchmark doesn’t mean the
team can count their campaign as successful just yet, though. “A successful season for us on the field is competing in the NCAA Tournament,” Kmak said, adding that the Maroons will need more than 20 wins to reach that goal. The Maroons will go for wins 21 and 22 against Aurora (20–12) in a doubleheader at Stagg, where the home side has only lost twice in eight games. The Spartans are led by the bat of catcher Tristan Wilcox, who has an on-base percentage of .483, and the arm of freshman Natalie Zanella (11–8), who has an earned-run average of 1.42 on the year.
second-year Michaela Whitelaw in the 400-meter (59.19) and the 3000-meter steeplechase (11:48.23) respectively. “They did very well against some of the best competition they have faced all year,” assistant coach Laurie McElroy said. “Everyone appears to be bringing their times down and the team is starting to really hit its stride.” Later this week, the Maroons will compete in the most important meet of the year, the UAA Conference Championship
at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. With the momentum gained from this last meet, McElroy is confident. “The team is peaking at the right time and should be at their best for the conference meet,” she said. If the Maroons manage to carry this form through the weekend, they could have a lot to cheer about by next Monday. “If we come into the meet with more energ y and enthusiasm,” Dern said, “we can do some really great things.”
Squad looks to “strike back” in rematch against Case TENNIS continued from back
punch to take the tiebreaker 10–6. Although the competition at this week’s UAA tournament will be a lot stronger than the Maroons saw on Sunday, Szabo said that there are still some take-aways from North Central. “Within each individual match, however, we tried executing formations and tried winning each and every point and it is in this way that this match helped us going into UAAs,” he said. “It is also a very different feeling going into UAAs with a won match than with a lost one.” The Maroons will need to
bring all the confidence they can get going into Thursday’s UAA tournament opener against Case. Just one week ago, the Maroons were beaten by the Spartans 7–2. But, Szabo said that the Maroons will come out stronger this time around. “We are really excited to play Case again; this is a great opportunity to strike back,” he said. “We have already come together with the team to look back at what we have done well and what we have done badly against them last time. We worked a lot on our doubles and we are really looking forward to face them again.”
“Wow...Didn’t really think Kendrick Perkins broke my nose...Super sore... Basketball is too emotional.” —Los Angeles Lakers forward Metta World Peace , reflecting on Sunday’s game against the Thunder.
South Siders carve up Bears, retain minor scratches
Third-years Jack Cinoman and Ben Bullock celebrate after Bullock scored against Hope College earlier this season. DARREN LEOW | THE CHICAGO MAROON
Baseball Sarah Langs Associate Sports Editor Three out of four’s not bad. For the Maroons (19–10) this past weekend, it seems impossible to spin their outcome in two doubleheaders at Wash U (24– 11), one sweep and one split, in any other way. Over the course of a packed weekend, Chicago extended its road winning streak
to five games before losing the second game of a doubleheader to the Bears late on Sunday afternoon. Saturday belonged to the South Siders. They won the first game 5–2 and took the second 11–1. They captured the first half of Sunday’s split by a score of 7–1 before falling to the Bears 9–8 in extra innings for their first loss in their past six games. “We had a great weekend,” secondyear outfielder Ricky Troncelliti said.
A great weekend, indeed. The first game on Saturday was a come-from-behind victory for the Maroons. Down an early two runs, they rallied to tie the score late in the game, forcing extra innings. In the top of the ninth, they plated three runs on an RBI fielder’s choice from third-year infielder J.R. Lopez, an RBI single from fourth-year catcher Stephen Williams, and an error from Wash U’s shortstop that allowed Lopez to scamper home. Second-
year William Katzka finished the Bears off with his sixth save of the year. The Maroons came out swinging a little while later in the second game. They scored a quick run on a sacrifice fly from Lopez, but starter Alex Terry gave up a run in the bottom of the first. That run would be the only one he would yield throughout the course of his complete-game performance. Chicago took the lead for good in the top of the third. Williams’ RBI double highlighted the inning. Chicago’s superb pitching continued into the first game on Sunday, when second-year Claude Lockhart’s completegame mimicked Terry’s. Lockhart, too, gave up an early run in the first and none after that. This time, though, the Maroons did not score until the sixth, when an offensive outburst led to seven runs. First-year infielder Kyle Engel’s three-run double broke the game open. All good things must come to an end, though. For Chicago, that end came in the second game on Sunday. The Maroons got on the board early with two runs in the first, and were still leading 2–0 heading into the bottom of the fourth. But the Maroons’ staff gave up seven runs in the fourth and fifth innings combined, a stark contrast to their earlier string of 1-run performances. Thanks to an offensive outburst
in the top of the fifth that helped keep the game close, the South Siders were able to push the game into extra innings, but Katzka allowed a run in the bottom of the eighth that gave Wash U a walkoff win and Katzka his second loss of the season. Despite that heartbreaking loss in the final game, there’s no question it was a successful weekend for the team. “We beat a real quality opponent three out of four times and to make it even sweeter, it was Wash U,” Troncelliti said. “We got awesome starting pitching and the offense really stepped up with timely hits.” The Maroons will try to keep the momentum from their three victories heading into a tough week. Coming off of a busy weekend, Chicago plays two games in a row this week, today and tomorrow. This afternoon, they take on Elmhurst (17–13). Tomorrow, they will face off against North Park (24–9). Both teams have played good seasons thus far, but the Maroons proved this weekend that they can hang with the best of them. “We have some big games this week and the momentum from this weekend should help keep us rolling,” Troncelliti said. Chicago will try to rebound from their loss this afternoon at J. Kyle Anderson Field at 3:30 p.m., and will be back at it again tomorrow at 3 p.m.
Maroons shoot down For two wins, there’s always Hope Cardinals Softball
Tennis Alexander Sotiropoulos Senior Sports Staff Men’s tennis easily ousted North Central College 9-0 on Sunday at the Stagg Field tennis courts. While the score was extremely lopsided, it came as no surprise to a confident Chicago squad. “As the score also shows, this weekend’s match wasn’t one of the most challenging ones,” secondyear Zsolt Szabo said. “Who will win the dual was never a question.” The regular doubles lineup easily swept the first three matches—fourth-years Jan Stefanski and Troy Brinker won 8–3, first-years Ankur Bhargava and Deepak Sabada bested their opponents 8–3, and Szabo and fellow second-year Krishna Ravella had confidently won 8–2. With the confidence the Maroons had before the match, head coach Taka Bertrand switched the lineup around. Brinker and Golovin, however, remained at the No. 1 and 4 spots, respectively. Brinker made light work of his opponent in a 6–0, 6–2 win. Golovin, in his first match since March 23, showed no signs of rust, with a decisive 6–1, 6–0 victory.
“I was just really happy to be back out on the tennis courts, and I was glad that I was able to contribute to the team,” he said. Meanwhile, Stefanski moved from No. 2 to No. 3, while Bhargava did the exact opposite. Stefanski allowed no games while Bhargava only allowed two. Instead of Szabo playing No. 5 singles, third-year Harrison Abrams saw court time instead. “I am always happy and eager to play against every team, but naturally, I accepted the coach’s decision,” Szabo said. “At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if I or another team member wins, if the team as a whole eventually wins.” No. 5 singles turned out to be the only contested match of the day. Third-year Harrison Abrams had a slow start, slipping to 3–0 before losing the first set 6–1. In the set, the wind was having an adverse affect on his serving. Abrams struggled with the impact of the wind on his serving in the first set, but adjusted for the poor conditions in the second and lost only one game. With the Maroons having already clinched the dual, Abrams played a 10-point tiebreaker for the third set. After losing the first point, Abrams delivered the final TENNIS continued on page 11
Derek Tsang Associate Sports Editor The Maroons got notches 19 and 20 on their regular season belt on Saturday, taking both games from Hope in a doubleheader at Stagg Field. Chicago (20–8) blew out the Flying Dutch 9–3 in the first game, taking an early lead that they never relinquished. In the nightcap, the Maroons scored the game’s only run in the fourth inning as Kim Cygan shut Hope out in a 1–0
victory. “We are definitely pleased with 2 Ws,” head coach Ruth Kmak said. “This time of year, it doesn’t matter how pretty the game or score is, as a team, we just want to end up with a W.” Even as the focus was on winning, and not any kind of moral victories, the South Siders managed to hit milestones and prepare themselves for future play. In particular, second-year Kaitlyn Carpenter broke the school records for triples in a season, tying the old mark of six in the sixth inning of the first game,
and setting the new record of seven with a crucial triple in the second game that set Carpenter up to score the game’s only run. Referring to Carpenter’s record as a “fantastic accomplishment,” Kmak described what she wants from her team in their upcoming games. “At this time of year, we are trying to win games,” Kmak said, “while also putting the components in place for a potential post-season berth.” She named particulars, like getting all of the team’s pitchers and hitters into game situations SOFTBALL continued on page 11
Fourth-year Sarah Neuhaus pitches in a home game last Saturday, leading the Maroons to a 9-3 victory against Hope College. TIFFANY TAN | THE CHICAGO MAROON