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10. 21. 10

T HES T UDE NTWE E KL YS I NCE1 969

PANDAMONIUM IN ANNENBERG

I ns i de: L a t i nosi nt hemedi a , l os ti nnoc enc e , a ndmor epa nda s .


10.21.10 vol. xlii, no. 7

The Indy brings a touch of cuteness to the Yard. President Weike Wang ‘11

Cover art by MARIA BARRAGAN-SANTANA

NEWS Apollo Night 3 FORUM Minority Report 4 Eating in Annenberg 5 Funding the Humanities 6 Childhood Lost 7 ARTS Harvard Panda 8 Six Characters in Search of an Author 9 SPORTS 10 Cliff Lee SPECIAL 11 The 2010-2011 Indy Executive Board

As Harvard College's weekly undergraduate newsmagazine, the Harvard Independent provides in-depth, critical coverage of issues and events of interest to the Harvard College community. The Independent has no political affiliation, instead offering diverse commentary on news, arts, sports, and student life. For publication information and general inquiries, contact Presidents Patricia Florescu and Susan Zhu (independent1969@gmail.com). Letters to the Editor and comments regarding the content of the publication should be addressed to Editor-in-Chief Faith Zhang (independent1969@gmail.com). Yearly mail subscriptions are available for $30, and semester-long subscriptions are available for $15. To purchase a subscription, email subscriptions@harvardindependent.com. The Harvard Independent is published weekly during the academic year, except during vacations, by The Harvard Independent, Inc., Student Organization Center at Hilles, Box 201, 59 Shepard Street, Cambridge, MA 02138.

Vice President Whitney Lee ‘14 Presidents Emeritae Patricia Florescu ‘11 Susan Zhu ‘11 Editor-in-Chief Yuying Luo ‘12 Editor-in-Chief Emerita Faith Zhang ‘11 Production Manager Miranda Shugars ‘14

Executive Editor Riva Riley ‘12

Business Manager Amanda Hernandez ‘14 Associate Business Manager Eric Wei ‘14 News and Forum Editor Arts Editor Sports Editor Design Editor

Publicity Coordinator Ezgi Bereketli ‘12 Meghan Brooks ‘14 Zena Mengesha ‘14 Brett Giblin ‘11 Alexandria Rhodes ‘14

Columnists Sam Barr ‘11 Luis Martinez ‘12 Staff Writers Arhana Chattopadhyay ‘11 Peter Bacon ‘11 Arthur Bratolozzi ‘12 Colleen Berryessa ‘11 Sayantan Deb ‘14 Levi Dudte '11 Gary Gerbrandt ‘14 Sam Jack ‘11 Marion Liu ‘11 Hao Meng ‘11 Alfredo Montelongo ‘11 Nick Nehamas ‘11 Steven Rizoli ‘11 Marc Shi ‘14 Jim Shirey ‘11 Diana Suen ‘11 Alex Thompson ‘11 Christine Wolfe ‘14 Sanyee Yuan ‘12 Graphics, Photography, and Design Staff Chaima Bouhlel ‘11 Eva Liou ‘11 Lidiya Petrova ‘11 Schuyler Polk ‘14

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10.21.10 • The Harvard Independent


News

indy

It's Show Time BSA’s Apollo Night brings back the Harlem Renaissance. By WHITNEY LEE

S

aturday night, in

L o w e ll Lecture Hall, Harvard’s Black Student Association hosted its annual Apollo Night. Apollo Night is one of the Black Student Associations annual crowd favorites, but it was strange to see the typically solemn lecture hall packed with shouting students and parents, excited to watch the showcase of young talent. The purpose of Apollo Night was twofold, to provide student with a respite from the hustle and bustle of their daily lives in the form of fun and entertainment, and to raise money for the Phillips Brooks House Association (PBHA), an active public service group on campus. The acts ranged from classical piano to gospel music and salsa. The show opened with an original composition by The Doelling Experience, a student group headed by Keith Doelling ’11 which received a warm reception from the crowd, followed by a song by the short-lived trio Phreshman Phenoms who were promptly booed off stage. In keeping with the tradition of Amateur Night, acts that did not please the crowd were booed and escorted off stage by Everton Blair ’13. Six acts were booed in total, ranging from spoken word to dance. To change the tone of the evening, Damaris Taylor ’12 wowed the audience with a stirring rendition of the gospel song “Tis The Harvard Independent • 10.21.10

So Sweet to Trust in Jesus” which earned him the runner-up position at the end of the night. Appearances were also made by the a cappella group Key Change, the salsa dance troupe Candela Salsa and the BMF/ ABHW Freshman Step Team, all of which were roaring successes. The grand prize, however, went to Wes Gordon ’13, who held the room in rapt attention as he performed his moving spoken word poem entitled “Love and Lust.” The BSA’s Apollo Night is a throwback to Showtime at the Apollo at the famous Apollo Theater in Harlem, New York that featured acts from professionals as well as first-time performers The BSA’s event is also reminiscent of the Apollo Theater’s Amateur Night, which catered specifically to undiscovered talent. It was at this show that the careers of the great Billie Holliday, Ella Fitzgerald and Sarah Vaughan were launched. The original Amateur Night and Showtime at the Apollo featured acts from entertainers such as Chris Rock, Donna Summer, Sean Paul and the late Notorious B.I.G. The throwback to Showtime at the Apollo and Amateur Night also serves as somewhat of a cultural homage as The Apollo Theater has been an important cultural symbol since the 1920s, when it was first built. The theater is considered a national historic site

for its role during The Harlem Renaissance, a period of explosion and expansion of Black culture. The Apollo Theater  has been one of the remaining monuments to the Harlem Renaissance. As a former burlesque house, it is to this day a constant reminder of AfricanAmerican History and the surge in African-American culture that began at the turn of the century after the arguably darkest period in African-American History. During its early years, it soon became one of the most famous and most popular clubs in America, the place that gave rise to the careers of some of the most famous figures of the Harlem Renaissance. The Apollo Theater, however, fell into disrepair after television became popular during the 1960s and remained in that state until its revival in the 1980s. It is now under the management of a non-profit organization called The Apollo Theater Foundation Inc. In this way, the event accomplished more than its two initial goals because it also served as a pleasant reminder of The Apollo Theater’s former glory. The Black Student Association’s contribution to PBHA in the form of this event is but one of the ways that the BSA and other cultural groups contribute to public service efforts both on and off campus. Recent years have seen a major

increase in the involvement of Harvard’s cultural organizations in public service. These on-campus cultural organizations number in the dozens, and organizations such as Harvard’s South Asian Men’s Collective (SAMC) and the Harvard-Radcliffe Asian American Association (AAA, or “Triple A”) have been very visible within the community. For the past two weeks, SAMC representatives went door-to-door selling tickets to their charity event “A Party” which was a party held last weekend to raise money to improve the education system, and the lives in general, of children in India and Pakistan, and AAA recently partnered with the IOP and a couple of political organizations to help run a voter registration drive. If the recent rise in service-oriented activities is any indicator of a future upward trend in public service, the Harvard community can look forward to a wave of continued public service and goodwill in the future. Apollo Night was arranged by Janell Holloway ’11, Rachel Byrd ‘13 with special thanks to Ashlee Adams ’12, the president of BSA, Justin Dews ’11, who served as emcee, and The Office of Student Life. Whitney Lee ’14 (whitneylee@ college) is forming her own revival group of The Supremes. independent1969@gmail.com

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Forum

The (ignored) social power of Hispanics online.

MINORITY REPORT By LUIS MARTINEZ

A

ll too often we hear of the

transformative properties of social media. It is what allowed Barack Obama to capture the youth vote and propel himself into the White House. It’s how modern-day advertisers choose to introduce new products and services. Simply put, social media is how people communicate in an ever-growing and changing world. Thus, it makes perfect sense for marketers to go online, particularly on social networking sites, to reach consumers with spending power. There is, however, one lingering question. Though I have seen an increasing amount of advertisements on television, on Hulu, and on Facebook – where is the pitch for Hispanics? Latinos make up about 10% of the American population, a number that will keep growing in the coming decade, and one that will have an increasingly significant role to play on industry trends. Latinos are also a group that is quickly gaining economic and commercial prominence and more purchasing power. AOL’s annual advertising summer research in 2009 showed that Hispanic users were more likely than in previous years to go online to make purchases, with over 80% of them being engaged in social media. With this sort of potential influence and power in the market sphere, why are advertisers not trying to reach out? 4

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A majority of US companies, 78% to be exact, said in 2009 that they had not utilized social media to reach out to Latino consumers, with 38% percent justifying such neglect due to a lack of return on their initial investment, and only 21% of them citing budgetary limitations as a reason for not engaging Hispanic communities. This is outrageous. The online population is filled with young, and to an extent, impressionable consumers that if marketed to, will be more likely to try out a particular product or service. The same definitely holds for young Latino audiences and it would be a shame for any company to not attempt to gain solid footing with the fastest-growing population in this nation. One often hears about the power of the Hispanic vote, and of Democrats and Republicans fiercely fighting for this vote. Latinos as a group is one that is quickly and effectively assimilating and taking a lead in shaping the culture of the United States, but at the same time is one that is still finding an identity within the greater context of this nation, its values, and ideals. It’s for this reason that they represent and exciting opportunity for politics. It’s for this reason that they represent an exceptional opportunity for companies looking to expand their market share and horizons. Yes, there are obstacles in

appealing to a group that is in itself quite diverse and constantly changing. Perhaps there’s a bit of wisdom in companies waiting to see the final shape that the Latino population takes on the American tradition. However, I would argue that while this may seem like a great idea on the surface, it’s the sort of tactic that will yield little to no results in the long term, as those willing to take the “risk” to advertise to Hispanics today will be rewarded for their dedication and interest in the Latino population. Some challenges include dealing with the many intricacies and differences that exist between Hispanic subgroups and dealing with the question of bilingualism. To the latter, I quickly point out that almost 60% of Latinos in the United State prefer to speak English, and that even a greater number than considers themselves bilingual, so I am convinced that this shouldn’t even be much of a concern. Now incorporating culture, Hispanic audiences, prefer an incorporation of their strong family values, religious ties, and nationalism brought into the advertising pitch. The thing that brings me the greatest annoyance is watching a television commercial that is clearly dubbed over from the English edition. My favorite ones have been from American companies, but ones that have invested significant resources to incorporate Latino figures, values,

and culture into their messaging, and yes, there’s much diversity. Even with my friends, the cultural differences between someone from El Salvador and someone from Mexico are impressive and, at times, quite substantial. However, if political candidates can engage in the short of micro-polling that allows people to analyze the voting patterns of a white mother of three who makes about $60,000 a year, I’m sure that we can work together to figure out a way to tell English from Spanish, and Columbian from Cuban, apart. The Hispanic population is growing, and it’s online influence is growing as well. While the average increase in internet use increased was three percent in 2009 among the general population, among Latinos it grew at closer to 7.5%, more than double most other groups. Latinos purchase the same things as anyone else: financial services, travel, health supplies, clothing, electronics, media, and so on. Those that have made the effort to see this growth as opportunity shouldn’t be commended for seeing the obvious, but should be congratulated for beating the majority of their competitive peers towards establishing relationships with a growing political, social, and economic force. To everyone else, it would be unwise to continue ignoring such a growing trend for much longer. 10.21.10 • The Harvard Independent


Forum

indy

Dining Hall Doldrums

Thoughts on the Annenberg dining experience.

By MEGHAN BROOKS

U

nder the brilliant blue ceiling,

hammerbeam trusses, and double rows of chandeliers that illuminate Annenberg Dining Hall, freshmen congregate daily to eat, discuss daily life, joke with friends, procrastinate, reminisce about their childhoods and especially during the weeks before midterms, complain. Constantly reverberating off the richly paneled walnut walls of the one hundred and thirty-six yearold hall are the complaints of hordes of hungry and disgruntled freshmen. Students sitting alone at lunch pretending to read for class can be heard muttering disapprovingly over their chipotle corn bisque while members of the football team grunt one-word criticisms between swigs of blue Powerade as they move from plate to plate. In other corners of the dining hall, the brasher students are not afraid to groan loudly at the sight of a lengthy food line, while the meeker ones whisper about bits of limp lettuce, keeping their thoughts from the kitchen staff and the stained-glass ears of the Tiffany windows above. As the year wears on, the complaints are surely to increase in number and volume, but before dissatisfaction reaches noxious levels, the Indy thought it would capture the last remaining vestiges of appreciation for the largest and most architecturally stunning dining space on campus. Such instances of appreciation were, as will be proved shortly, a little difficult to find. The majority of complaints surrounding Annenberg are related to its food — a fact that would not surprise many upperclassmen. “I didn’t realize how bad the food was until I moved to the upperclassmen The Harvard Independent • 10.21.10

dining houses in the Quad,” said Evelyn Wenger ’11. Yet, many freshmen were quick to defend the honor of their class’ gustatory options. “I don’t love it, I don’t hate it. It’s food,” Amy Z. Chen ’14 said from her seat in the Lamont Café. When pressed, however, she admitted that there is one item on the menu that is a little harder to swallow, “Their tofu is gross. They call it Chinese tofu, but it’s nothing like it.” Carnivores had their own complaints as well. “I don’t care how expensive steak is,” a freshman said in a late-night interview in his suite. He paused to consider his words and then added thoughtfully, “I want it.” His simple desire for good red meat was one of the most common wishes articulated by freshmen students in an informal poll conducted Sunday night. His roommate, who shall remain nameless for fear of reprisal, agreed. “The kitchen staff does an excellent job preparing meals with the cuts of meat they have. However, the cuts of meat are, in general, subpar. There are always excellent options, really fresh vegetables for the vegetarians though. It seems a little unfair seeing as they are the minority.” Although rumor has it that many vegetarians might disagree wi t h t his a ss e ss m e nt o f t he i r overrepresentation in terms of edible options, they were unavailable for comment at polling time as they had all gone to bed at a healthful and conscientious hour. Another major source of consternation for freshmen was food labeling. Several students brought up concerns over the potential mislabeling of dishes that might contain meat while others remain

confused over such menu items as “corn niblets”. One freshman girl commented, “I don’t know why they don’t just call everything on the grill menu an ‘Annenburger’. That is a lost opportunity for some truly excellent punning! Also, what happens to the Autumn Soup in the spring? I need to know.” Adding to the list of grievances was the entirely unprofessional conduct of the kitchen machinery this semester. Last Thursday, the dishwasher, in complete disregard of all environmental and sanitary concerns, was out of commission for the majority of the day. Three Mondays ago, the fire alarm had the audacity to disrupt the lunches of over one hundred students, and to top it all off, the froyo machine abandoned its customary post in the back-right-hand corner of the serving area for over a week, leaving freshmen without what had become for many an after-meal necessity. In addition, according to Greg Edwards ’14, the panini press is always covered in grease, and the bagel toasting apparatuses are known to undercook bagels, burn bagels, or alternatively, swallow them whole. A student who wishes to remain anonymous had this to say about the milk dispensing machines, “I hate it when I’m getting milk from the, well, the udders, and the milk levels are too low and it takes forever to come out.” While this particular student’s grievance did not seem to be a common one, his frustration at having to wait for something as basic as milk was echoed in the near universal complaint of having to wait in long lines for something as basic as food. While no student compared Annenberg’s lines to Soviet bread

lines, it is safe to say that for most part the comparison is uncannily reflective of their own feelings. At brunch this past Sunday, the length of time from entry into the Veritaffle line to the successful production of a golden brown waffle smothered in whipped cream was clocked at approximately five minutes and twenty-nine seconds. This length of wait time was promptly deemed unacceptable. This exact sentiment was reflected in other aspects of Annenberg’s organization as well. “Sometimes they don’t put dessert out, which is unacceptable,” a freshman girl commented. “Everyone needs cookies,” she added. Other miscellaneous complaints, which run the gamut from the absence of particular brands of hot sauce to the perennial griping about inconvenient dining hours, are too numerous to explore fully. One complaint that went unsaid, however, is the complaint that no one wants to acknowledge. What really makes Annenberg so annoying is that there is not actually much to complain about. The dining staff is friendly, the food is generally palatable, and the ambience borders on pleasant. Also, to the kitchen’s credit, there has not been a culinary disaster of epic proportions since The Great Food Poisoning of ’94. If students were to recognize this aloud, however, this reporter believes there would be a general reduction in morale. “Misery loves company,” they always say, and it is doubtful that there is any company better than 1,667 whining Harvard freshmen. Meghan Brooks ’14 (meghanbrooks@ college) will enjoy eating with all of her fellow classmates while she can. independent1969@gmail.com

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Forum

Starving the Arts The crisis in higher education. By YUYING LUO

I

t is no secret that the global

recession has impacted every industry from health care to transportation — and universities, specifically state-subsidized institutions, are no exception. You probably heard that a few weeks ago, George M. Philip, the president of SUNY Albany — a campus with 18,000 students — announced that the university had planned to cut its degree programs in French, Italian, classics, Russian, and theater. The cuts were inevitable because of budgetary

there have already begun to predict that such a decrease in government support could include an 80% reduction in funding. This m a y t ra n s l a t e i n t o d r a s t i c a l l y reduced or entirely eliminated subsidies for subjects like the arts and humanities — areas that are traditionally considered less vital to the country’s economic competitiveness than science and engineering. As a Molecular and Cellular Biology concentrator, I admit that I am probably not in the best

to the underlying daily interactions of society. The aforementioned subset of skills ca nnot alwa ys be easily quantified — learning Rawls’ theory of justice for the first time cannot be compared to learning a complex economic equation. It is not that the usefulness or worth of Rawls’ theory of justice pales in comparison to that of the latter, but that they help develop a student in different and complementary ways. Learning an economics equation may enable a student to do a

are unavoidable. It would be naïve to think that any department could escape unscathed from the budgetary decisions handed down by the university. But for SUNY Albany, the complete elimination of such programs is a death sentence for the purpose of the university itself. Rather, the university should work to adapt these courses in changing times — either by scaling down the programs until funding resources are replenished, or by incorporating them in other ways with other courses that will

This may translate into drastically reduced or entirely eliminated subsidies for subjects like the arts and humanities — areas that are traditionally considered less vital to the country’s economic competitiveness than science and engineering. constraints and because of the fact that those programs enrolled proportionately fewer students, he said. SUNY Albany’s decision predictably generated a maelstrom of heated commentary on the value of humanities for an increasingly vocationally-minded student body. Nor is this situation is limited to the United States. Just a few days ago, the results of a yearlong inquiry into higher education and student finance in the United Kingdom entitled “Securing a Sustainable Future For Higher Education” were released. Better known as the Browne Review, the report called for the current cap on tuition fees at universities (heavily subsidized by the government) to be replaced by a free-market approach where students absorb the discrepancies in cost. Universities 6

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position to defend the value of the humanities in an undergraduate education. But perhaps it is because of my experience as a science concentrator that I am able to see clearly how the humanities classes I have taken here at Harvard have added to my undergraduate experience. It is incredibly shortsighted to think that the material taught in humanities classes are not vital to future career development for any student body. People are often skeptical of what is actually taught in humanities classes, but what these classes teach is not obvious. Humanities classes promote critical thinking and analytical skills, enhance communication techniques, and expose students to a multitude of ideas, concepts, and philosophies that are integral

problem set or help them in their future career, but Rawls’ theory may ultimately shape how the student conceives of the the world. In essence, what humanities classes build are the skills the enable us to become better global citizens and more self-aware individuals. The language classes that enable us to communicate with people in other countries, the philosophy classes that encourages us to reflect on what constitutes our version of the good life, the art and history classes that allows us to appreciate the rich narrative of mankind — all of them promote a type of internal self-improvement that is needed more than ever in our communication-based, globalizing world. I realize that economic pressures on university budgets

also fulfill the general education requirements in place there. In the wake of SUNY Albany’s decision, President Drew Faust delivered a rousing speech defending the value of the humanities. We are lucky to have a university president who is deeply passionate about the presence of humanities on campus — especially in these tough economic times. But the humanities should not be a luxury found only at certain institutions; that can only exacerbate the divide between private and public universities. The value the humanities add to an undergraduate education, to a student’s development as a person, and to a school’s diversity of thought is enormous. Yuying Luo ’12 (yluo@fas) is going to go read some books now. 10.21.10 • The Harvard Independent


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Forum

Forever young

The folly of youth: the woes of maturity. By RIVA RILEY

T

here is a certain freedom that

comes with being young and stupid. Now, I don’t mean stupid in the knowledge sense or even the common sense sense (I never was one of those kids who tried to examine a pumpkin’s aura). And I don’t mean young in the “Go to your room! No Dessert!” sense. Rather, I mean to discuss youth in the actual sense—the being precocious, doyour- homework-and-get-a-cookie sense. If I sound wistful, it is because I see that shining liberty fading away: I am old. In the biological sense, I am considered a slightly immature female, a young adult. And as a college student, I occupy a privileged place in which I assume no frightening responsibilities but can still live relatively independently. Now, I can go get my own cookie when I do my homework, and I can get any kind of cookie and even choose two or three if I feel like it. Hell, I can get myself a cookie even if I don’t do my homework. I can also say “hell”. But I am starting to see

the looming dark cape of the future, and let me be frank- it’s no barrel of monkeys. It’s more like a stadium full of monkeys, all screaming and howling and throwing what you hope is mud. It’s not very elegant, my metaphor for maturity. Entertaining, maybe, if I didn’t have to be the one to take care of the unruly primates. And I’m sure there will be touching moments, like when I befriend a particularly rebellious monkey or a mother lets me hold her baby monkey. But I’m sure there will also be a lot that my monkey metaphor can’t describe (or that my metaphor can’t gracefully describe). For example, I file a tax return each year. I had no idea until I came to college, went home for break and talked to my mom that I had to sign these forms—tax forms. Apparently, my mom files all her children’s tax returns without ever saying a word, letting the gesture fall into an abyss. It is then very, very strange, troubling even, that one day, we’ll have to file our own tax returns

when we’re making our own money. There is probably a whole barrel full of tax-like things I am not aware of yet. A whole stadium full probably. This is not to say that I want to preserve all elements of my childhood—far from it. Who wants to be told when they can go to bed? Or what qualifies as dangerous? And who wants to live with the subtle, unstated expectation that wherever you go, you must tell your family so that you are charted on a map with little dots following your trail? Rather, this essay is a feeble homage to my nostalgia, to a simpler time when I didn’t have old classmates who are getting married next summer and hadn’t yet realized that my childhood friends and I will never do the things we thought we would (number of llamas trained to play volleyball: 0). Maybe it’s a fear of an objective reality—those don’t exist when you’re young. Maybe I just miss Annenberg. Not for the dubious food, intimidating architecture, or inability to find the people I went to eat with after

we separated over fundamental differences in culinary preferences (I suppose I also miss Domna swiping my ID as I slunk in). Instead, I miss being surrounded by doubts. The Annenberg of my time was full of doubts, about everything: no one was sure of anything. Now, as the doubts are clearing, something has to remain and that is what alarms me. My monkeys might disappear and I hope they don’t. Despite all this, I’m not too worried about my transition into real-personhood: I turn 21 this year, marking me as a full citizen with all possible rights at my disposal. After all, certain vestiges of my youth (I still can’t rent a car or run for president) will usher me gently into my new life and I’m sure I won’t even notice these changes as they occur. I will find myself a changed woman, or something, but no matter what, I can always turn to my metaphors. Riva Riley (rjriley@fas) suffers from an overactive imagination and a short attention span

AFRICA IN MOTION - This Thursday 5:30-7:30 Committee on African Studies W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research Join CAS and DBI for a University-wide celebration of Africa and the wide-ranging and robust Africanist initiatives underway at Harvard. "Africa in Motion" will offer a unique experience to engage with Harvard's Africanist faculty, students, and fellows through interactive multi-media installations and substantive, inter-disciplinary panel discussions. Celebrate Harvard's enduring commitment to African Studies, as we herald new opportunities for engagements both at the University and with our partners throughout Africa. LOCATION: The Laboratory at Harvard, Northwest Science Building, 53 Oxford Street, Cambridge. The Harvard Independent • 10.21.10

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Arts

A different kind of Asian tourist.

Hello, Panda! By MARIA BARRAGAN

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10.21.10 • The Harvard Independent


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Arts

Realistic Theatre What’s real and what’s illusory in Six Characters in Search of an Author. By ANGELA SONG

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he chaos that is the second -

to-last rehearsal before any big opening night mirrors the pure pandemonium of the premise of Six Characters in Search of an Author by Luigi Pirandello. Watching the cast and crew put the finishing touches on the performance gave me an opportunity to talk to them as I learned about the intricacies and philosophical issues that the play touches upon. In this unique play, every role in reality corresponds to the same role on stage. It was confusing at first to speak with the assistant stage manager, whom I had assumed did not have a speaking part, only to realize that he also acted as the assistant stage manager in this play within

a play. Soon, it became clear that I was only just beginning to peel the first layer of this complicated production. As the curtain opens onstage at Loeb Ex, a play is in rehearsal when six random people interrupt, claiming to be characters from an unfinished play looking for an author to share their story. They search for someone to share their tales with the world, and rope in a director, played by Jesse NeeVogelman ’13, who is also the actual director of Six Characters in Search of an Author. Drama, confusion, and hilarity ensue. Nee-Vogelman spent last year active in Harvard’s theatre scene, dreaming of the chance to direct 6 Characters in Search of an

Author, a particular favorite of his. Originally written in Italian, NeeVogelman recruited Brandon Ortiz ’12, who translated the entire work. At Common Casting this year, Ben Silva ’14 auditioned for multiple plays, but this particular one jumped out at him. “It was a classic text that I never read which was important in dramaturgical history. It had an interesting premise and this was a great chance to play a part with a lot of emotion and interactions with other characters.” He was eventually cast as The Son, one of the six intruding characters. Without giving away any important details beyond the basic synopsis behind the play, Silva stated that his favorite

segment of Six Characters is “the end, because it makes the entire play, and really shows its emotional core.” According to Will Forster ’13, the Assistant Stage Manager both on and offstage, “The play really makes you think about the boundaries between reality and illusion.” He tells the audience to ask themselves, “What is theatre? What is the audience?” This is what makes this play such an enjoyment to watch. Beyond the engaging dialogue, dynamic staging, and costume, stage, and light design, Six Characters is at its heart an intelligent, sophisticated play. It calls upon the audience to consider the “lines between theater and reality through layers and draws attention to the fact that the characters are in a show themselves,” stressed Nee-Vogelman. The cast and crew agree. Their proudest achievement is their success in preparing for this show in an intense five-week rehearsal schedule between casting and opening night. From what I saw tonight, they have reason to be. This show is filled with the intense drama that draws an audience in and captivates them for three acts, but has enough brilliant wit and satire to keep them laughing as well. I look forward to seeing them Opening Night, Thursday, October 21 at 7:30 p.m. at the Loeb Ex, and I have been sufficiently intrigued by just a few scenes at rehearsals. You can reserve your free tickets at 6characterstickets@gmail.com for their weekend run from October 21 to the 23. Six Characters in Search of an Author is directed by Jesse T. Nee-Vogelman ’13 and produced by Kelly M. Conley ’11. Angela Song’14 (angelasong@ college) got lost on the way to the Loeb Ex. But it was worth it.

The Harvard Independent • 10.21.10

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9


Sports

Simp-Lee Spectacular

Cliff Lee’s mastery of the mound is not to be missed. By BRETT GIBLIN

A

nyone even remotely interested

in postseason baseball, from the most casual fan to the most obsessed baseball writer, knows of Cliff Lee. He has morphed into arguably the greatest postseason pitcher ever, dominating power-packed lineups to rack up an impeccable record in his first eight playoff starts. Not a single team has found a way to beat him; he has averaged more than eight innings in each of those starts, with an earned run average of 1.26. However, his domination may be best indicated by his strikeout-towalk ratio. A good ratio for a pitcher is anything above 3K/BB, while a spectacular ratio is 5K/BB. Lee, in his 64 postseason innings, has struck out 67 against seven walks for a ridiculous ratio of 9.54K/BB. As the immensely talented Joe Posnanski wrote in his beautiful article this week, “And though Roy Halladay threw a no-hitter, and Tim Lincecum had his brilliant game against the Braves, this has been Lee’s postseason. He is the master at work.” Yet, as Posnanski points out, effortless dominance was not always the way that Cliff Lee operated. Clifton Phifer Lee has had more than his share of downs to go with the ups. Originally 10

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drafted by the Montreal Expos as the 105th pick in the 2000 draft, Lee was traded as a minor leaguer to Cleveland with Lee Stevens, Grady Sizemore, and Brandon Phillips for Bartolo Colon in 2002. Lee made his debut at the end of that season, and went on to be basically a middle-of-the-rotation lefthanded starter — which translates to a valuable but hardly great pitcher. Then in the spring of 2007, disaster struck. He went onto the disabled list with a groin injury, paving the way for the ascension of and subsequent dominance by Fausto Carmona that season. When Lee returned, he was hardly effective, and was sent to the minor leagues. It seemed that the Indians rotation that had carried them to first place was better off without him. CP Lee was left off of the postseason roster, and the Indians collapsed one win away from the World Series. Lee took the postseason slap in the face and the indignity of his demotion and turned it into motivation to work as he never had before. The results were spectacular. Lee became a model of control unseen since Greg Maddux was at the height of his powers. In 2008, Lee won the Cy Young award — despite

his team’s failure to meet preseason expectations, never truly being in contention — on the strength of a 22-3 record and a 2.54 ERA. He has never looked back since. He will be the most coveted free agent this winter, after two years of being a mercenary ace — playing for four teams in two years, leaving batters frustrated and shocked wherever he went. How and why did this happen? No one seems to really know, least of all Cliff Lee. Lee is not one to look back and reminisce about what might have been, but the fans of each team he has played for inevitably do. Indians fans wonder why Lee did not become an ace in 2007, where his level of pitching would have undoubtedly put the team over the top and brought the title back to Cleveland for the first time in sixty years. Phillies fans wonder what might have happened if they had forced a game seven in last year’s Series and had the Lee who ran like a buzzsaw through the Yankees lineup starting that game. Seattle fans wonder what would have happened if their position players had not underperformed so badly, sabotaging a postseason rotation headed by King Felix and CP Lee. It now remains to be seen if Texas will

be the first team to win the World Series behind this dominant force, thus saving them from grasping for answers to the questions that the other franchises posit. Part of the reason that Cliff Lee does so well in the playoffs is because he specializes in showing up on the big stage. There is no bigger stage than New York in October, and in his last three playoff starts against the Yankees, he has been extra special. As such, many experts conclude that since New York has seen firsthand how much of a force Lee can be in a playoff series, they will reward him with a huge contract this offseason — Lee’s first winter of free agency. While Lee may eventually regress and return to the realm of the merely mortal — he is human after all, or so we suppose — what he has done in his postseason career warrants every superlative imaginable. Maybe it is time to deify him and celebrate him in the holy season that is the postseason. All hail Clifton Phifer Lee, god of October! Brett Michael Giblin ’11 (bmgiblin@ fas) once watched Cliff Lee throw his glove twenty rows deep into the stands. A batter struck out on the toss. 10.21.10 • The Harvard Independent


Special

indy

congratulations!

to the indy's new executive board

Weike Wang ’11

President

Ezgi Bereketli ’12

Publicity Coordinator

Whitney Lee ’14

Vice President

Miranda Shugars ’14

Production Manager

Yuying Luo ’12

Editor-in-Chief

Meghan Brooks ’14

Riva Riley ’12

Executive Editor

News and Forum Editor

Zena Mengesha ’14

Arts Editor

Brett Giblin ’11

Sports Editor

Amanda Hernandez ’14 Business Manager Eric Wei ’14

Associate Business Manager

Alexandria Rhodes ’14 Design Editor

A Fond Farewell Reflecting on time spent at the Indy.

I

t ’ s been a long and eventful year .

In just the last twelve months, we lost hot breakfast, colorful chairs sprouted overnight in the Yard, the economy got a little better, Yale fell a spot in the US Weekly and World Report ranking, and the cost of attending Harvard went from $48,868 to $50,724; and in that time, we prepared to commemorate our 40th anniversary, described (almost) every concentration in the sophomore issue, cheered our team on to yet another victory in the Game, marked the passage of Halloween and Valentine’s Day, celebrated the Winter Olympics with a Canada issue, finally acquired a digital copy of forty years’ worth of back issues, and welcomed a new generation of freshmen to the Indy.

The Harvard Independent • 10.21.10

It’s a bittersweet parting — a final goodbye to long nights working into the wee hours in a freezing office and listening to European techno in questionable taste, and with it a goodbye to the camaraderie produced by fits of near-hysterical laughter at the terrible puns that result from trying to come up with article titles while sleep-deprived. The memories of time spent in our office — wrapped up in blankets, sitting on the hedgehog, exploring the inexplicable objects left behind by the executive boards that preceded us, arranging Iron Man’s arms and legs, debating the existence of the articles written for the Indy by a young Barry Obama — will last long after the issues we published have gone brittle and yellow with age.

Now it’s time to hand things over to the next generation. They have quite a lot of history to live up to, but we have every confidence that they, with all their remarkable talent and youthful enthusiasm, will prove themselves up to the task. We wish them the best of luck in all their endeavors. Signing off, Susan Zhu ’11 and Patricia Florescu ’11 Presidents, 2009-2010 Faith Zhang Editor-in-Chief, 2009-2010 October 21, 2010

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11


captured & shot By PATRICIA FLORESCU

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