Bardian bard college spring 2012
dear bardians, As I write this from Seattle, ice and snow blanket the region, but by the time my words reach you we will be in the throes of spring, a season that has in the last year and in previous times of uprising become a metaphor for growth and change. Bardians have participated for and against the Occupy movements around the United States, and I trust that they are encouraging dialogue and spirited debate on the many complex issues facing our nation and our world—all the more crucial as this presidential election year progresses. Current student perspectives on this world in transition are presented through excerpts from a roundtable discussion on page 8. This issue of the Bardian takes us around, as well as outside, Annandale, highlighting a few of Bard’s programs nationally and internationally: the Bard Prison Initiative, Bard Early College Centers in New Orleans, the partnership with the American University in Central Asia, and 10 years of the Bard Globalization and International Affairs Program (BGIA) in New York City. I had the good fortune to experience Bard’s international initiatives firsthand when I visited the Al-Quds campus in the West Bank last fall. Not surprisingly, the students I met were articulate, intelligent, energetic, and excited about their studies in media, economics, and finance, speaking one moment of Moderation and the next of crossing checkpoints to reach the commuter campus each day. Their commitment to experiencing a liberal arts education reminded me of how much we take for granted, and how important it is to support Bard’s efforts in increasing access to educational models that foster critical thinking. I am pleased to report that end-of-year giving online was three times higher than the previous year. Thank you for your donations, and for encouraging others to give to Bard. Bard’s fiscal year 2011–12 ends June 30; if you have not already done so, please consider a donation to demonstrate that a strong community remains interested in and supportive of the College today. Commencement weekend is May 25–27; please join us to celebrate the next generation of Bard alumni/ae, while reconnecting with classmates, faculty, and friends. All alumni/ae are invited to attend the annual meeting of the Board of Governors of the Bard–St. Stephen’s Alumni/ae Association on Sunday, May 27. I look forward to meeting you and discussing how alumni/ae can support Bard as ambassadors of the College, connect with other alums, and facilitate the financial support that enables Bard to continue its work in Annandale and around the globe.
Left to right: Pauline Ores ’77, Lauren Wendle ’77, Molly Peters ’10, Ilyas Washington ’96, and Michelle Dunn Marsh ’95 at the Holiday Party. (See page 24.)
Warm wishes, Michelle Dunn Marsh ’95 (firstname.lastname@example.org) President, Board of Governors, Bard–St. Stephen’s Alumni/ae Association
board of governors of the bard–st. stephen’s alumni/ae association
board of trustees of bard college
Michelle Dunn Marsh ’95 President Roger N. Scotland ’93, Vice President Maggie Hopp ’67, Secretary/Treasurer Robert Amsterdam ’53 Claire Angelozzi ’74 David Avallone ’87, Oral History Committee Chairperson Dr. Penny Axelrod ’63 Belinha Rowley Beatty ’69 Eva Thal Belefant ’49 Joshua Bell ’98, Communications and New Technologies Committee Chairperson Dr. Miriam Roskin Berger ’56 Jack Blum ’62 Carla Bolte ’71 Randy Buckingham ’73, Events Committee Cochairperson Cathaline Cantalupo ’67 Thomas Carroll ’81 Pia Carusone ’03 Kathleya Chotiros ’98 Charles Clancy ’69 Andrew Corrigan ’00, Development Committee Chairperson Peter Criswell ’89 Arnold Davis ’44, Awards and Nominations Committee Cochairperson Liz Dempsey BHSEC ’03, ’05, Young Alumni/ae Committee Chairperson Kit Ellenbogen ’52 Barbara Grossman Flanagan ’60 Andrew Fowler ’95 Diana Hirsch Friedman ’68 R. Michael Glass ’75 Eric Warren Goldman ’98 Rebecca Granato ’99 George Hamel III ’08
David E. Schwab II ’52, Chair Emeritus Charles P. Stevenson Jr., Chair Emily H. Fisher, Vice Chair Elizabeth Ely ’65, Secretary Stanley A. Reichel ’65, Treasurer
Boriana Handjiyska ’02, Career Connections Committee Cochairperson Dr. Ann Ho ’62, Career Connections Committee Cochairperson Charles Hollander ’65 Josh Kaufman ’92 J. P. Kingsbury ’03 Richard Koch ’40 Erin Law ’93 Cynthia Hirsch Levy ’65 Isaac Liberman ’04 Peter F. McCabe ’70, Awards and Nominations Committee Cochairperson Steven Miller ’70 Anne Morris-Stockton ’68 Karen Olah ’65 Patricia Pforte ’08 Susan Playfair ’62 Arthur “Scott” Porter Jr. ’79 Emilie Kate Richardson ’05 Reva Minkin Sanders ’56 Kendall Serota ’04 Barry Silkowitz ’71 George A. Smith ’82, Events Committee Cochairperson Dr. Ingrid Spatt ’69 Walter Swett ’96, Awards and Nominations Committee Cochairperson Olivier te Boekhorst ’93 Paul Thompson ’93 Dr. Toni-Michelle C. Travis ’69 Brandon Weber ’97 Barbara Crane Wigren ’68 Dr. Dumaine Williams ’03, Diversity Committee Chairperson Ron Wilson ’75 Matt Wing ’06
Fiona Angelini Roland J. Augustine Leon Botstein, President of the College + David C. Clapp Marcelle Clements ’69* Asher B. Edelman ’61 Robert S. Epstein ’63 Barbara S. Grossman ’73* Sally Hambrecht Ernest F. Henderson III, Life Trustee Marieluise Hessel Matina Horner Charles S. Johnson III ’70 Mark N. Kaplan George A. Kellner Cynthia Hirsch Levy ’65 Murray Liebowitz Marc S. Lipschultz Peter H. Maguire ’88 James H. Ottaway Jr., Life Trustee Martin Peretz Stewart Resnick Roger N. Scotland ’93* The Rt. Rev. Mark S. Sisk, Honorary Trustee Martin T. Sosnoff Susan Weber Patricia Ross Weis ’52 +ex officio *alumni/ae trustee
above Kameryn Lueng ’13, in the Graduate Vocal Arts Program, performs in the opera Four Sisters (see page 25). cover Autobiographical Self-Portrait, by a Bard Prison Initiative student, in a class taught by Daniella Dooling, Bard artist in residence. Photo: Courtesy of Bard Prison Initiative (see page 2).
Office of Development and Alumni/ae Affairs Debra Pemstein, Vice President for Development and Alumni/ae Affairs 845-758-7405, email@example.com Jane Brien ’89, Director of Alumni/ae Affairs 845-758-7406, firstname.lastname@example.org Anne Canzonetti ’84, Deputy Director of Alumni/ae Affairs 845-758-7187, email@example.com Joanna Tanger ’07, Program Assistant, Alumni/ae Affairs 845-758-7089, firstname.lastname@example.org
Bardian SPRING 2012 2
What Can College Mean? Lessons from the Bard Prison Initiative | Ellen Condliffe Lagemann
A World in Transition | Roger Berkowitz
Liberal Arts in New Orleans | Stephen Tremaine ’07
BGIA: 10 Years of Global Engagement American Grand Strategy in the 21st Century | Walter Russell Mead
Bard in Bishkek | Jonathan Becker
Published by the Bard Publications Office email@example.com ©2012 Bard College. All rights reserved.
Luis Garcia-Renart | Kyle Gann
Printed by Quality Printing, Pittsfield, MA
On and Off Campus
photos Karl Rabe
Bard Prison Initiative students in Calculus III class
2 education in prison
photo Pete Mauney ’93, MFA ’00
education in prison
what can college mean? lessons from the bard prison initiative by Ellen Condliffe Lagemann
Recently, I drove with a colleague to a maximum-security correctional facility run by New York State in a small town in the Catskill Mountains. It is one of the five sites where the Bard Prison Initiative (BPI) operates a full liberal arts program leading to both A.A. and B.A. degrees. My colleague and I both go in and out of this prison regularly to teach classes and advise students. This time we were going to meet with 16 men who are about to enter the final stage of their bachelor’s degree programs, the writing of their senior theses. Our purpose was to make sure the students understood the process of moving from a general topic to a more refined set of questions; the ways one builds a bibliography from both contextual materials and primary and secondary sources; and the importance of developing successive drafts, each more refined in argument, logic, and language than the last. Every student will have an advisor with whom he or she will work closely, but this was a general introductory meeting to get things launched. The 16 students with whom we met are among the more than 250 students currently enrolled in BPI. They were originally admitted to a program leading to an associate’s degree; then, having done well in their first years of college work, they were invited to apply for the baccalaureate program. Now they are mostly finished with the required classes in literature, foreign language, history, philosophy, the social sciences, mathematics, science, and art and are ready to begin their long final papers on topics ranging from U.S. policy toward Cuba to the ideas of literary critic Northrop Frye. There are a number of things about this college program that are unusual. Let’s start with the most obvious: Our students are convicted felons who are serving relatively long sentences for serious, often violent crimes. They do not go home for weekends; they do not have vacations. They cannot visit a professor’s house, browse in a bookstore, or even surf the Internet. Many simultaneously participate in other programs such as PACE (a program of peer HIV/AIDS education). They tend to be in their mid-twenties, although some are as old as forty-five. Most (83 percent) had not graduated from high school before being incarcerated; they received GED degrees while in prison.
Almost all have jobs to defray the cost of food and other commissary items or to save money toward the college expenses of their children. But they are paid prison wages, which are much lower than even the lowest-paying on-campus jobs. BPI reflects the distinctive character of the core institution of which it is a part, Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York. Many of the practices that make Bard a “progressive college” have been replicated in the prison program. There is a strong emphasis on writing; all classes are small (12 students is the norm), and most are discussion-based; all B.A. students go through Moderation, a meeting typically held at the end of two years with three faculty members to review progress to date and plans for completion; and all must complete a senior thesis. Each student has an advisor with whom he or she works quite closely throughout the undergraduate years. With a faculty drawn mostly from Bard and academic standards identical to those in place at the Annandale campus, BPI offers a rigorous experience that leaves many of its graduates eager and ready for further education and all determined to lead productive lives after release. BPI is unusual in yet another way that deserves mention: It is extremely successful—as demonstrated, first and most obviously, in its completion rates. Few students flunk or drop out. Most who do not finish their degrees cannot do so because they are moved by the Department of Corrections to a facility where BPI does not have a program or because they are released from prison. Among those who have been released before graduating, many have finished their degrees elsewhere. In comparison to national statistics—nationally, community college completion rates run about 30 percent and fouryear college rates are about 60 percent—BPI’s graduation rates are impressive. If one discounts people who do not finish because they are released from prison or moved to a facility where BPI does not operate, our completion rates are virtually 100 percent. Within BPI, though, we measure our success mostly in terms of such difficult-to-quantify characteristics as the capacity to engage in critical thinking and self-reflection; fluency of expression; and interest in current events, domestic and international. We also count such
what can college mean? lessons from the bard prison initiative 3
intangibles as a sense of agency and social connectedness. We assess these qualities via written work, including lengthy papers and examinations, as well as by students’ participation and leadership in service activities both in prison and, after release, on the outside. The traditional yardstick for college-in-prison programs is, of course, recidivism rates. Of the roughly 600,000 people released from U.S. prisons every year, 50 to 70 percent return to prison (depending on the measure of recidivism employed). Since it is well established that college in prison is the most successful and cost-effective way to reduce those numbers (for a useful review of relevant literature, go to http://www.prisonpolicy.org/scans/research_brief__2.pdf), reducing recidivism is a reasonable measure of any college-in-prison program’s success. On that scale, too, BPI is outstanding. Of graduates who have been released, only one or two have been returned to prison, while many are reunited with their families and holding responsible jobs. Since 1994, when Pell Grant eligibility was removed from men and women in prison, college-in-prison programs have become a rarity. If and when funding for them is restored, BPI may serve as a model for similar endeavors across the U.S. Until that time, it is worth considering for its more general relevance to those institutions that serve the increasingly stressed college-student population in this country. At a moment of wide uncertainty about the purpose, value, and sustainability of American higher education, BPI may offer grounds for thinking anew about how and why going to college must be seen as essential for each and every American—indeed, as nothing less than a democratic right. There are three aspects of the Bard program that are especially critical to its success: the admissions process, the approach to skill development, and a blurring of the lines between liberal and vocational education.
admission by aspiration BPI is a highly selective college. Roughly one of every ten applicants is admitted; those who are rejected are encouraged to reapply. Some students apply two, three, or even more times before winning a place. All students are initially admitted to the A.A. program. Success with that degree is a prerequisite for application to the B.A., which is handled through regular channels in the Bard Admission Office. Recruitment for BPI is entirely by word of mouth. Year after year, informal peer recruitment yields a significant applicant pool. But since BPI is known to be not only difficult to enter but extremely challenging to complete, applicants often need encouragement before deciding to apply. This usually comes from students talking with friends while exercising or relaxing in a recreation room. We are told, too, that BPI students often congregate in the yard and discuss their reading, in the process engaging non-BPI peers in the conversation. Being “in Bard” carries considerable prestige. We have heard that BPI is discussed even in prisons where we do not have programs, and we know that some of our students have requested transfers to one of our prisons in order to be eligible to apply.
4 education in prison
The admission process begins with an essay composed in response to one of several prompts, most likely a poem, an excerpt from a major work of social science, or a passage from an historical document. Students are not given instructions about what to write or how long their essays should be. They have roughly two hours to write whatever they choose. After the essays are completed, five faculty members independently read and rank them. Typically, the essays run two to three pages and are full of incomplete sentences, phonetic misspellings, and inappropriate word choices. It is often difficult to decipher the writer’s meaning. Nonetheless, there are always some that seem to sing: they powerfully recount a childhood experience; they present an interesting question or interpretation; they demonstrate attention to the logic of an argument; or they develop a novel idea, perception, or image. Some applicants demonstrate an unusual capacity for self-expression. It is those standouts we’re looking for. Ambition and curiosity, rather than prior academic achievement, are our chief selection criteria. From approximately 200 essays, we select up to sixty applicants for interviews. Given the rigidity of prison schedules, these must be brief and occur in succession, with one nervous applicant after another meeting for about ten minutes with two faculty members. During the meeting, we inquire about their essays, probe their reasons for wanting to enter the college, and ask what their intellectual interests are and what they think they may become. There is no formula for success. Once again, we are looking for evidence of drive and probable persistence. We try hard not to be unduly charmed by the handsome, confident candidate or put off by those who are nervous. After all, a conversation between two, typically white, Ph.D.s in civilian clothes and an African American or Hispanic person in a baggy green uniform is hardly a level playing field. After the interviews we talk among ourselves, comparing impressions and doing triage if, as is usually the case, there are more candidates we want than we can accept. Repeat applicants have an edge, especially when they have engaged in serious reading or grammar study between application cycles, borrowing books from the prison library or from a peer. We are not “composing a class” in the sense of seeking a balance among people with different backgrounds, interests, and the like. We are trying to identify people who have the personal qualities— courage, desire, realistic expectations, and determination—that are likely to sustain them through the long, intense, and difficult years of study. Aspiration—defined not as a wish but as a demonstrated capacity to strive and to focus mental energy on a particular task, such as reading a difficult book or mastering parts of a grammar manual—is what we want to see. In Creating a Class: College Admissions and the Education of Elites, the sociologist Mitchell L. Stevens documents what we all know: However much selective liberal arts colleges attempt to welcome a “diverse” pool of students, applicants who begin with advantaged backgrounds are more likely to be admitted. That is not true, of course, in BPI. As is the case of the prison population generally, our
applicants are men and women (BPI enrolls eight men for every woman) who are likely to have come from backgrounds characterized by poverty and family disruption. They have learned more from “the street” than from the failing or mediocre schools they have attended. Those who are successful tend to be people who have struggled to make something of themselves and who are hungry for opportunities to read, think, and learn about the world. Some come to BPI after religious experiences that have encouraged a wish to change. Many speak of wanting a “voice”—most immediately, perhaps, so that the governor will find their pleas for clemency persuasive, but also so that through their writing (we have a number of would-be authors) they can convince younger people not to make the kinds of choices that landed them where they are. In recent years, more and more colleges (Bard among them) have given up requiring applicants to take the SAT. BPI may suggest going even beyond that. Our students succeed not because we lower standards, but because they bring a potential to respond to the expectations and assistance we offer them. If equity is a serious priority in higher education, rethinking the balance in admission criteria between aspiration and past academic achievement may be in order.
a culture of learning If BPI students were enrolled in a typical community college, their skill levels would lead to their placement in “developmental” or remedial classes. BPI offers nothing like that. Upon admission, students are given copies of a grammar manual, Diana Hacker’s Rules for Writers, and are told to master it. During their first year, they must complete two classes in composition and two in grammar, and fully one-third of all A.A. requirements must be met in writing-intensive classes. On the math side, all must pass at least one class in quantitative reasoning (for example, advanced algebra or statistics), for which they are offered a noncredit preparatory course in basic algebra, if necessary. In addition, there are tutors, mostly undergraduates from the Annandale campus, available to students who request extra help. Beginning in their first semester, however, BPI students are enrolled in regular classes, usually alongside second- or even thirdyear students. In these history, philosophy, or literature courses—for example, a survey of existentialism or an anthropological study of “divided cities” —they are expected to read and write on a college level. The learning curve for first-year students is nearly vertical. It is not unusual for beginning students to claim that BPI is “insane” or to assert that it “pushes you to the limit.” However, because they work extremely hard and quickly learn to ask for help, beginning students are increasingly captured by the excitement of the material they are offered and by the discussions that reading Othello or debating different interpretations of the causes of the Civil War can engender. Like most college students, they tend not to enjoy the composition and grammar classes. But their wish to do well in Shakespeare or American history and their need for skills in order to perform on a par with other Bard students carry them through.
The case of one of my advisees, let’s call him “Juan Solera,” is illustrative. When I first met him, he was enrolled in composition and grammar, which he intensely disliked, and two courses he did enjoy— one in American literature and one in political theory, called Power. Because he was struggling with composition, he complained to me that his professor was “not fair.” I reviewed his papers with him, pointed out that the professor was correct in his criticisms, and offered to meet with him regularly to review his written assignments. By the end of the semester, Juan was able to argue with me about the use of semicolons and achieved what I thought was a remarkable record, a C+/B- average. He was not satisfied, however, and asked if we could continue to work on his writing; I agreed. Now, two years later, Juan writes fluently. Having pleaded to be exempt from math because it was “impossible” for him, he has moved all the way through Calculus II. His grades are typically A-, and he plans to apply to the B.A. program (he is likely to be accepted and will possibly be allowed to pursue a double major in social science and math). Among BPI students, Juan is not unusual. His experience demonstrates the possibility for high achievement when challenge, drive, and support are combined. Calibrating the right mix among those elements is essential in ensuring college success, and experience within BPI suggests that while there is no formula for gauging that mix, establishing a culture of learning is critical. Such a culture seems to begin with subject matter worth learning, so that the acquisition of skills assumes vital instrumental value, but is not mistaken for an end in itself. It is helpful, too, if the atmosphere of classes, formal faculty-student conferences, and informal student interchanges is infused with the recognition that learning is difficult, cumulative, and social—social in the sense of being enhanced by teaching one’s peers what one knows and allowing them, in turn, to teach what they know. It is not unusual to hear BPI students talk about having joined a “brotherhood” or “fraternity.” “We always get together and edit each other’s papers,” one student told me, while another simply stated that in BPI, “The camaraderie is a beautiful thing. It’s good energy.” Healthy competition directed more toward surpassing one’s own prior achievement than beating other students also appears to enhance effort, as does the need to surmount clear hurdles (within BPI, these are gaining permission to apply for the B.A., being admitted to the B.A., being allowed to move into a major field, and the senior thesis). Finally, a high level of mutual respect between faculty and students, combined with a shared commitment to student success, has been shown to be powerful. BPI students often comment with pride that faculty members seem to be learning alongside their students. They compare the college as a whole to a “family” in which everyone has a place.
the vocational value of the liberal arts The culture that pervades BPI is integrally connected to the purposes students bring to the experience and develop as they move along.
what can college mean? lessons from the bard prison initiative 5
Initially, most students would probably have picked a vocational degree over one in the liberal arts, if they had had that choice. In this they resemble their collegiate peers nationwide—although, since our students must first be released from prison and surmount many challenges the nonincarcerated will never face, they are perhaps even more focused on enhancing their prospects of employment. Initially they believe that vocational education, defined as job training, will help them realize that goal. In fairly short order, however, they become convinced of the vocational value of the liberal arts. That does not mean they do not also want job-focused preparation— and we are now developing postgraduate work aimed at preparing students for jobs in technology, public health, and a number of other fields. But it does suggest that they come to recognize the essential, identity-forming value of liberal learning. In this way, the curriculum has definite “vocational” value: It shapes the aspirations of our students and, given their demonstrated knowledge and skills, their confidence in their abilities to realize them. That is evident in their extremely realistic assessments of what is involved in improving one’s life chances. Even though few of them would use the term “cultural capital,” our students recognize that being able to read, write, and speak correctly will enhance their prospects of employment. They are also aware that knowledge that is associated with “being well-educated” is a marketable commodity. One student told me that before entering BPI he had not known “Kafka, Freud, Montaigne, and Ellison.” But now, he concluded, “I can talk about those guys with anyone.” When asked whether and how BPI had changed him, another student simply said, “Hell! BPI has changed me a lot. I’m reading German, and that will impress people.” Studying sociology, poetry, mathematics, and science also shapes how students perceive themselves and their situations because, as one man told me, “The more you get formal education and you’re in the loop, the more you feel connected to the world.” About halfway through a history class I was teaching on John Dewey and his contemporaries, one student told me that the class was helping him understand how society was “meant to be.” When I looked puzzled, he explained that he had been locked up when he was seventeen and was now just over thirty. Before, he claimed, he’d had a sense that many things were not right in the world as he had known it—for instance, the difference between the poverty and urban squalor he had experienced growing up in Brooklyn and the wealth he had seen on television. Now he saw those differences as a result of the imperfections in democracy and education that we were discussing in relation to the ideas of Jane Addams, the founder of Hull House. I was deeply impressed by his capacity to use abstract ideas to make sense of aspects of his experience that he had found puzzling. In the process, he was proudly redefining who he was and what he might aspire to be and do. In conversations I have had with many students, the same point is made repeatedly. Coming to understand the social sources of their individual experience is tremendously empowering. Many have told me that their college classes have taught them the importance of
6 education in prison
“social structure”—the ways a nation’s economic decisions, social policies, history, and popular religious beliefs construct the opportunities, constraints, and choices that define all of our lives. One man said that his formal studies had made him “socially conscious of structures around the education that came from the streets.” As a result, he is now aware that “there is more to life” than he had known before. However varied our students may be, their encounters with the liberal arts seem to enhance their sense of agency, especially their sense of civic mission. At commencement, a few BPI students are always asked to speak. Many talk about how their increased ability to think critically and to understand their society has left them determined not only to get a job and become self-supporting but also to “give back.” Most often, this takes the form of wanting to contribute to their communities. As one graduate announced, “With greater knowledge, an individual will have greater opportunities to live and lead a better life. I now know I have responsibilities in my community. I must stay focused and persevere because I’m needed out there to help steer our young away from a life of crime, drug use, gang banging, and waking up in jail.” Even though most of our students will not be able to vote, they have become proudly conscious of their civic responsibilities and eager to fulfill them. I have long believed that drawing sharp either-or distinctions between liberal and vocational education is myopic. Doing so ignores the fact that education, for all people at all levels, can only be effective when it connects with and transforms one’s sense of self as manifested in the capacity to think, speak, create, or produce—that is, to work. One’s competence in a job or a profession is enhanced by the sense of personal and civic vocation that the liberal arts at their best can uniquely provide. At a time of such uncertainty about the purposes, value, and costs of going to college, finding ways to intermingle liberal and vocational learning represents a way forward for American higher education.
college for all? BPI offers a demonstration proof of college success under unusual circumstances. Whether one believes, as I do, that its effectiveness can be useful in thinking about practices and policies for higher education more generally, there can be no doubt that it is offering educational opportunity to a woefully underserved segment of the American population. Nevertheless, BPI operates under the constant threat of having to shut its doors. Since 1994 public funding for college in prison has dried up, and there is little hope of restoration. More alarming, the major private philanthropies that have invested so generously in higher education—Gates, Lumina, Ford, and Carnegie, among them—have so far refused to include college in prison in their grantmaking portfolios. Refusing to support college in prison privileges punitive desires to get tough on criminals over sensible public policy. Today, the U.S. leads the world in rates of incarceration. With roughly 5 percent of the world’s population, the U.S. incarcerates 23 percent of all prisoners worldwide—more people than China or Russia, let alone compa-
rable OECD countries. Continuing to hold one in 100 people behind bars, as the Pew Center on the States boldly put it in its much-heralded 2008 report, is extremely expensive. Paying for a man or woman to be housed in a maximum-security prison costs about as much as it does to send a student to Harvard. Between 2005 and 2009, state spending on corrections grew 25 percent, while state spending on higher education increased only 18 percent. Even more unfortunate, prisons magnify the racial inequalities that still plague American society. Currently, more African American men between the ages of 18 and 24 are in prison than are in college. Looking to the future, the Children’s Defense Fund estimates that of African American boys born in 2001, one in three will go to prison. Refusing to support college in prison implicitly represents a fundamental change in American policy. Until recently, the U.S. relied on education as the central strategy for realizing its national goals. Whether those goals were as lofty as racial integration or regaining leadership in the international space race or as immediate as reducing traffic accidents and illegal drug use, education at all levels was regarded as the preferable means for achieving our aims. There is much to be faulted about viewing education as a panacea, perhaps especially in the context of mass incarceration. However, when it is demonstrably effective in helping people change their lives for the better, education represents a desirable social intervention and a policy preference that should not be abandoned without careful consideration and full public debate. In the end, then, the success of BPI must challenge advocates of higher education to consider whether “college for all” remains a goal to which this country is committed. College for all has recently been misconstrued as precluding effective vocational education for high schools students who would prefer to enter the workforce directly. For many students, a lock-step program running consecutively for more than 12 years is not appealing and does not make sense. That was certainly the case for BPI students, who tended to prefer the streets to school, even before the end of 12 years. But as their experience demonstrates, college can add significant value later in life. Is college only for those whose lives proceed in a linear fashion? Is it only for people who have never made a mistake? Is it only for the advantaged? In my view, BPI demonstrates what the answers to those questions should be. Certainly, it shows that those questions deserve full and frank debate. Reprinted from the November/December 2011 issue of Change magazine (changemag.org). Ellen Condliffe Lagemann is Levy Institute Research Professor at Bard College and a senior fellow in the Bard Prison Initiative. She previously served as dean of the Harvard Graduate School of Education and as president of the Spencer Foundation; she also taught for many years at Harvard, NYU, and Columbia. With Harry Lewis, Lagemann is the editor of What Is College For? The Public Purpose of Higher Education, published by the Teachers College Press (see p. 41).
bpi student tutors Bard student tutors support the Bard Prison Initiative in several ways—working one-on-one with inmates on GED test preparation, assisting professors, and tutoring in various subjects—and have found that a passion for learning is a common factor among the incarcerated men and women. At Beacon Correctional Facility, a minimumsecurity facility for women in Dutchess County, New York, tutors lead a creative writing workshop that covers poetry, memoir, and fiction. Sofia Bonami ’12, a tutor since 2009, assists with the workshop. “I was shocked by how appreciative the students were. It was a pleasant surprise. They came into it with fresh minds and they liked to be creative,” she says. A Trustee Leader Scholar student, Bonami also organizes the work that many other Bard students do in the prisons. “I’m very interested in education, and this is an encounter with education from a viewpoint I never would have expected. I would recommend it to anyone in a heartbeat,” she says. Diana Pitcher ’12 is a writing tutor for Professor of Philosophy Daniel Berthold’s class at Eastern NY Correctional Facility, a maximum-security facility in Ulster County, New York. She helps students formulate thesis statements and work on evidence and counterevidence for the class, and also assists with spelling and grammar. She began working as a tutor in 2010, to assist another Bard professor teaching in the prisons. “The guys that I tutor, and others that are taking BPI classes, are the most respectful and motivated people I’ve ever met,” Pitcher says. “They want to learn and grow and be passionate about something, and it really shows in terms of the work they put into their classes.” The tutors’ hard work has paid off. Two examples: Carlos Rosado ’10 majored in environmental studies for his B.A. He was released, just before graduation, from Woodbourne Correctional Facility (so accepted his diploma in Annandale), and is employed by WeRecycle! as a field application engineer. Erica Mateo ’11, who started her education in prison and finished her degree in anthropology at the College, was until recently a programs assistant at Community Solutions, the Brownsville Partnership. She now is working for the Center for Court Innovation, a public/private partnership between the New York State Unified Court System and the Fund for the City of New York, helping the justice system aid victims, reduce crime, strengthen neighborhoods, and improve public trust in justice.
what can college mean? lessons from the bard prison initiative 7
a world in transition Moderated by Roger Berkowitz
Five Bard students recently participated in a roundtable discussion
KALINKA It’s a beginning. It’s waking people up.
about their fears and hopes for the rapidly changing and uncertain
AJAERO The way that I think has expanded during my time at Bard, but I realize a lot of people in my community don’t share my zeal for world issues. Occupy Wall Street and the Arab uprising give people a reference point to think about the ideas of revolution and liberation. But it’s important that they find a meaning closer to their lives, a revolution on a more personal level that they can then expand to their communities, so that the values and principles that human rights espouses can materialize.
world they are soon to enter. Topics of discussion ranged from terrorism and climate change to political gridlock and the Occupy movement. The participants were Beatrice Ajaero ’12, a human rights and Africana studies major from New York City, whose College activities include student government, peer counseling, and interning at the Rift Valley Institute and Chinua Achebe Center for African Writers and Artists; Zachary Israel ’12, member of the Bard Debate Union, Trustee Leader Scholar, double bass player in the College orchestra, and political studies major from New Jersey; Irina Kalinka ’12, a human rights major from Berlin, Germany, who is a member of the debate union, Bard Prison Initiative tutor, and Davis United World College Scholar; Pakistan native Saim Saeed ’13, named outstanding delegate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point’s 2011 Student Conference on U.S. Affairs, participant in Model UN, and currently studying at Central European University in Budapest; and Steven Tatum ’12, a philosophy major from Vermont, who is a writing tutor, member of student government, and bassoon player in the College orchestra. Edited excerpts of their remarks follow.
BERKOWITZ Hannah Arendt said that the way we have to go through life is to think about what we’re doing. She also said that when you have a crisis, it tears away facades and obliterates prejudices. And we’re going through a lot of crises right now: the economy, health care, the environment, politics. Which of these crises most excites you or most worries you? KALINKA One thing that worries me is the lack of political passion in my generation. We are inspired by human rights and humanitarianism and trying to make the world a better place, but we need systematic change to counter these diverse crises. We need an engaged and politically active public that is willing to go out on the street and to organize their own campaigns. BERKOWITZ Are the events of the last year, beginning in the Middle East and then in the United States with Occupy Wall Street, the answer? Are these crises unleashing the activism and political passion you say we need? 8 student roundtable
TATUM Because of these crises, we are now asking what it means to be in the world with other people. A lot of people think political engagement means having their own political opinions, but not necessarily discussing them with other people, or voting. The more that we can exchange opinions, the better: “I think this is what needs to be done. What do you think needs to be done? Can we work on this together?” People recognize that Congress is not working. We need to rethink what it means to be political. ISRAEL With the Arab Spring and the Occupy movement, we are seeing a shift in people’s attitudes toward ownership of themselves within their society and in relation to the government that is supposed to represent them. We often use the terms “freedom” and “liberty” to describe the values that all humans want for themselves. But the biggest issue is ownership over our future. The vast majority of Americans simply want a fair stake in their future. We want clean elections. We want public financing of campaigns so that, if I run for political office, I don’t have to spend most of my time getting money from special interests to have a fair shot at winning. All the crises mentioned are affected by how campaigns are funded and who has influence. I’m optimistic because I see people rising up and demanding change. Is it going to happen quickly? Probably not. But at least it’s fostering a dialogue. SAEED I’m from Pakistan, and most of these crises are amplified there. For a long time I believed that terrorism was the number one threat, but now I also see a global crisis of governance. What’s most important to me is that these crises are global in scale. Some countries are more affected than others, but there is a need for cooperation. And the way international relations work right now doesn’t allow for that—especially the idea of sovereignty trumping any sort of cooperation. The mistrust and skepticism that exist don’t allow for productive action or even dialogue.
BERKOWITZ Where is the friction in the system? Is it with government? Corporations? Voters? Many of the countries mentioned are democracies, yet there doesn’t seem to be a huge amount of will to change things. So where and how does one fight? ISRAEL I’ve interned for members of Congress and plan on entering public service in the future, but right now I’m applying to Teach for America. I feel that people who go to institutions like ours have an obligation to give back, whether through teaching, serving with a nonprofit organization, or doing something else that can help improve society. As to the friction in the system, again, I think the main problem is corruption. There are genuinely good people in our political system who want to do right by their constituents and by our society. But what hampers them, from the very beginning, is that to perpetuate their political careers they have to raise lots of money. It’s easy to see how there could be conflicts of interest. It’s not impossible to fix, but it will take the will of the public.
KALINKA One major problem I see is how the free-market mentality gets to run free. That’s at the core of why a lot of people aren’t as engaged, aren’t talking to each other, don’t get the complexity of many issues. A lot of what the mainstream media in this country provides is infotainment. What brings them the most viewers is talking about some celebrity or the affairs that a politician has. And they have shareholders, so they don’t want to threaten any interests that may hurt wherever their money is coming from. So I don’t think the public is getting the information they need from the media.
SAEED For me, what’s important is how we shape the debate. Most issues are complex, and they need to be thought about intelligently, but that is often lost because of partisanship, because politicians faced with a perpetual campaign have different priorities, and because there is this need to see the world as good and evil, black and white. In the United States, you have the labels of liberal and conservative, and so many things get attached to one label that you lose the ability to think about issues in isolation. The media is one entity that can help identify what is important and what can be done, and it can provide a forum for people to discuss these issues. Occupy Wall Street is a case in point. Because there is so much talk about it, people are becoming more political. I’d like to participate in shaping the debate, so journalism is something I’m considering. Being the decision maker would be preferred, but that’s sort of impossible in Pakistan right now. More than a thousand political workers have been assassinated this year in my city [Karachi] alone. TATUM One thing I’ve gotten from my education is a sense of the importance of genuine dialogue with someone—not just “I’m a liberal, you’re a conservative.” Even if you break it down to an issue, where I’m pro-whatever and you’re anti-whatever, you need to be open to actually listening to the person and hearing why they have these views. And then you can have a conversation about it so that, even if you don’t come to a magical consensus, you have some sort of commonality affirmed, an understanding that you’re not living in totally different worlds. AJAERO I was thinking about my responsibility as a Bard student, having been in this environment, and how far dialogue will take me in a community like New York City public housing. It has to be a fullon discourse and a constant one; because while those dialogues can happen, the people there still have to return to their disenfranchisement. You have to find ways to not only bridge that gap, but also allow them the agency to articulate the changes that need to occur in their environment.
Irina Kalinka ’12, Roger Berkowitz, and Saim Saeed ’13
Yes, we have to have conversations and challenge each other. We have to work on the local level to engage the people immediately around us. But one thing I’m suspicious of is bipartisanship, the idea that you constantly have to make compromises. I’m influenced by Arendt and by the idea that to be moral we have to judge. Sometimes we have to say, “On this issue there is no compromise. The country should have a single-payer health care system, and I won’t create something that is completely watered down.” TATUM I don’t see conversation as consensus building necessarily. In a genuine conversation you would be able to say, “We need a singlepayer health care system,” without me writing you off as a socialist. The role of debate and conversation is about learning to see other peoples’ perspectives—and even changing opinions. That’s something that’s not OK in the political environment today. The minute you say, “I had this conversation with someone and I see things differently now,” you’re a flip-flopper and your career is out the window. ISRAEL There was a time when people from both sides of the aisle could come together and work on issues in a realistic way. The United States has existed for more than 230 years, and I think that’s a pretty good measure of success. We need people to work together to solve
a world in transition 9
our problems, but with a democracy as large as ours, over 300 million people, it’s going to get messy. BERKOWITZ There’s an old saying in politics that to make an omelet, you have to break a few eggs. How many of you think some eggs need to be broken? And if you think there is a crisis, what needs to be done? SAEED Fewer eggs need to be broken than people think. If you look at the Middle East, most of the dictators there were in power for 30 or 40 years, so in that sense it was time to get rid of them. But as the
KALINKA I’m not sure that’s where our salvation lies. There is a reason why these issues aren’t as clear as they could be. Climate change is backed by scientific facts; there shouldn’t be a debate. The problem is that a lot of people are benefiting from the status quo, from being able to pollute the air and water. So it makes sense to keep the public less passionate, less aware of the facts. And it makes sense for climate change to be part of these ideological splits, so that if you’re conservative, you shouldn’t believe that we need to do something about it because America is great, and we need to trump China in terms of economic power. Nationalistic rhetoric and other things that rouse passions are broadcast over and over again, helping to keep the status quo in place. Maybe these stories can be challenged in the way we talk to each other, but I think what we need is more political pressure. SAEED You let people off the hook too easily. You need a certain amount of volition to believe what you’re being told. Which is why I’m skeptical of campaign finance reform [making a big difference]. No matter how much money the Republicans spend, I never would have voted for Herman Cain. Talking to as many people as possible and figuring things out for yourself is the first step. How can you call yourself a responsible citizen if you haven’t thought these things through? Once you know where you stand, you realize the things that you can and cannot deal with. The oil and mining companies obviously think that they can continue with the status quo indefinitely, so they are skeptical of climate change. I’m sure that if companies knew that they wouldn’t exist if they were under water, literally and figuratively, then they would say, “OK, maybe we need to stop our emissions.”
Steven Tatum ’12 and Zachary Israel ’12
crisis is unfolding in Egypt, it seems that what needs to happen is a psychological/philosophical shift, as opposed to specific actions. Certain countries—not the United States so much—need to have a better idea of what they want from their government. The military/civilian chasm that exists in Pakistan needs to end. But before you try to do that, you need to think about what you want to take its place and how you can get it. With most of these issues, even in conversations such as this, there needs to be a difference in the way people think about them in order to move somewhere. That’s why I think Occupy Wall Street is good, in that they’re more interested in how we think about these things than in specific actions. But then, what you expect to change is radically reduced, because it isn’t about getting bankers arrested or congressmen to pass legislation so much as asking for different ways to think about these things. I struggle with how the shift comes about, but I think it has less to do with holding up banners and more to do with contemplation.
10 student roundtable
KALINKA That might be true, but companies run on the idea of creating more and more profit, and they’re responsible to a lot of individuals who would like their shares to rise. I don’t think they can make rational decisions about the future; it’s more about being accountable in the present. ISRAEL For hundreds of years now we’ve been debating about the extent to which government should be involved in our lives, should help us in certain areas. I’m not one of those people who is diametrically opposed to capitalism, but I do think certain aspects of our lives, like health care or making sure our water is clean and our air is clear, should be outside the purview of the free market. SAEED Capitalism gets a lot more flak than it deserves. Wanting to make a profit isn’t in itself a bad thing, and there’s something to be said about the technology and innovation that have come about through capitalism. I don’t think capitalism caused the crisis; I think it was lack of regulation. Any sort of business, whether it’s banking, investment, or even toys, needs to be regulated in terms of how much damage it poses to society. That’s where government needs to step in and make sure that the practices of capitalism don’t cause more harm than good. AJAERO The free market allows for the dissemination of many ideas, but it also limits ideas. Finding a way to effectively engage with the
free market to obtain a positive outcome can be a difficult dance. For example, the free market may open doors for citizens of the African continent to better connect with the global community. On the other hand, the “dance” must ensure that the values of the continent, which has long been on the periphery of the free market, are promoted alongside the many other cultures and ideas that are circulating around the world. BERKOWITZ Do you feel that your generation faces a crisis of ideas, a lack of ideas that could motivate people to pursue a common goal?
your sexual orientation—humanitarianism supplements the things that people thought the political system would provide. TATUM I don’t have any long-term hope about maintaining what we have. Somewhere in our past there was a tipping point, and now we’re headed in a direction that is unsustainable. Whether it’s population or how much CO2 is in the atmosphere, we can’t hit “pause,” fix the problems, and continue in the sort of life we have now. I don’t think we’re going to be able to improve conditions generally, the way we have over the past 50 years.
KALINKA In my Senior Project, I’m writing about the idea of humanitarianism, which was always based on being apolitical—alleviating suffering no matter who the person is that’s suffering. One reason the idea of humanitarianism, like human rights, has grown rapidly is that we like the idea of apolitical utopias. Since the Cold War, we’ve become very disillusioned with politics being able to make a real difference. So it seems comforting to say, “I’ll donate some money and know that a child in an impoverished nation will get food today.” But that is putting a Band-Aid on a profusely bleeding wound; it’s not going to change the dynamics. That’s where the lack of ideas comes in. We don’t really know how to affect the political system. It’s become so complex. But we have to keep fighting. AJAERO Facing the system head-on makes me a little nervous. The idea of trying to make someone or something say “yes” when they’ve already said “no” kind of plagues me. Thinking about how disenfranchised communities can still believe in ideas of liberation and freedom when every day they face a system that hits them over the head with the same ideology is difficult. My hope is that in small communities like Bard, people can get away from that haze and think deeply about change and ways to resolve issues, and then they can enter back in and tackle those issues with the people who are facing them. ISRAEL I actually have hope for the future. American society has become more progressive in the sense that more people have been given more rights and more liberty over the trajectory of our history. Right now, an example of this trajectory is the LGBT community. Every generation is more progressive than the one before it, and our generation overwhelmingly supports the rights of LGBT people. We are a naturally optimistic people who will, in small ways, make society better over time. But I am not hopeful about the way that we, and our institutions, procrastinate in dangerous ways. As Saim said earlier, once oil companies and energy companies and governments realize how dangerous the situation is, then they will act. But the procrastination worries me. SAEED The sort of disillusionment that comes from political systems is more about how the political systems were sold to people. The United States’s promotion of democracy as the be-all and end-all of any general political system has been a problem. People say, “OK, we’ve got it. Now what?” Humanitarianism does provide basic things without regard to ideology. To know that you can have clean water, that you don’t have to starve, you don’t have to be slaughtered for
photos John Rizzo
Beatrice Ajaero ’12
SAEED I think this is the first time we’re experiencing problems on a global level. The euro debt crisis is emblematic of that. With climate change and terrorism, with recent wars being cloaked as humanitarian interventions, most nation-states seem to be coming to grips with the fact that they can’t act independently anymore. It’s tough, and a lot of people are making mistakes, the United States in particular. College students are seeing all of this and they know that things will be different, that there has to be more cooperation in the future because the alternative is nonexistent. KALINKA I hope these crises are going to provide an open space for new ideas to emerge about how to structure the cooperation that is desperately needed. But I’m also hopeless in the sense that, as Zach said, it’s going to happen so last minute; it already seems that the heavens are about to fall. Roger Berkowitz is associate professor of political studies and human rights and academic director of Bard’s Hannah Arendt Center for Politics and Humanities.
a world in transition 11
Ryesha Williams (center) and other Bard Early College Center students in First-Year Seminar: What Makes Us Human?
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bard early college centers
liberal arts in new orleans by Stephen Tremaine ’07
Anika Butler is like many Bard students in one respect: she is unlike most other high schoolers in the country. Anika is enrolled at a New Orleans public high school in the mornings; she’s a Bard undergraduate in the afternoons. Like her classmates at the Bard Early College Centers—Bard’s high school early college institutions in New Orleans—she’s taken on the first year of a Bard education in the liberal arts and sciences during her last two years in a New Orleans public high school. Now in their fourth year in New Orleans, these early colleges reflect Bard’s commitment to extending the reach of liberal education and making a transformative investment in struggling American cities. Their impact in New Orleans, moreover, reveals how deeply linked those two commitments are. The term “early college” has been used to describe any initiative that provides college-accredited course work to high schoolers. As a movement in education, early college was set in motion largely by Bard College at Simon’s Rock: The Early College, which Bard operates in Great Barrington, Massachusetts. While early college programs have exploded in number and variety across the country, those run by Bard remain rare in the landscape of American secondary schooling—unique for their ability to express what is most intellectually rewarding about the liberal arts classroom in the often chaotic setting of the American high school.
Recovery School District, a state agency that was developed to rebuild New Orleans’ long-struggling public schools, reached out to Bard in 2007 with a simple—and daunting—question: would Bard be involved? Within months, Bard courses were under way in high schools facing the most basic challenges: spotty electricity, students without homes, families shaken by a flood that destroyed 80 percent of their city. The Bard Early College Centers in New Orleans emerged as the newest in a group of innovative efforts to extend the Bard education beyond the Annandale campus and into public school systems. The first of these, the Bard High School Early College (BHSEC), opened its doors on Manhattan’s Lower East Side 10 years ago. In the decade since, BHSEC has reshaped the national discussion on bridging the intellectual projects of high school and college. At the conclusion of four years of high school, BHSEC awards an associate’s degree from Bard College alongside a New York City Regents diploma—enabling bright, driven students from across New York City (many of whom face daunting social and economic obstacles to higher education) to begin the transition to a competitive, rewarding four-year degree while in high school. BHSEC is a Bard campus operating as a public high school; its faculty and curricula reflect what’s best about the Bard
students here aren’t afraid to ask difficult questions, to immerse themselves fully in the rigor of a liberal arts classroom.
Kaycee Filson ’11, who works in New Orleans as a college guidance counselor in the Bard Early College Centers, affirms this: “The students of Bard’s early college program in New Orleans are every bit as free-thinking, curious, and ambitious as my classmates in Annandale were. Students here aren’t afraid to ask difficult questions, to immerse themselves fully in the rigor of a liberal arts classroom, and to demand that engagement of each other. From the intelligent debate that arises in sociology classes to the creation of their own community engagement projects, our students far exceed the expectations of their traditional high schools and rise to the challenge of being undergrads of a truly unique institution.” In New Orleans, Bard’s early colleges took shape after Hurricane Katrina tore apart an already devastated school system. The Louisiana
undergraduate education, and its students reflect the diversity of New York City. BHSEC’s success has led to the creation of two additional high school early colleges in the area: BHSEC Queens (opened in 2008) and BHSEC Newark (opened in fall 2011). Another Bard early college program, Paramount Bard Academy, operates on the Delano, California, campus of Bard’s Masters of Arts in Teaching Program, where expert teachers lead a Bard curriculum for high schoolers living in one of the most economically depressed zip codes in the country. President Obama has cited Bard’s model of early college education— embedding the resources, standards, and ideals of the liberal arts and sciences college into high-needs school districts—as among the most important innovations in American education. liberal arts in new orleans 13
Bard Early College Center faculty member Dedra Johnson with students in First-Year Seminar: What Makes Us Human?
Students on these campuses are bright young people who’ve often found high school underwhelming. The Bard early college experience is designed to attract exactly this student—and to put within his or her reach what can be most electrifying about a college seminar. In New Orleans’ Early College Centers, as at Bard’s other early college sites, this takes shape through three fundamental commitments: Bard early college students study with gifted educators who are active and accomplished in their fields. Students are introduced to an area of study through the passion and understanding of a teacher who is deeply engaged in its advancement. In a recent semester, the New Orleans Early College Centers offered a course in ethics and justice taught by a professor involved in reshaping death-penalty policy in Louisiana; students enrolled in a course on medical anthropology taught by an Oxford-trained anthropologist focused on the social geography of infectious disease in 19th-century New Orleans. These courses introduce students to a field of study through a scholar who feels personally its importance. Bard’s High School Early Colleges emphasize not just college-level material but, more important, college-level inquiry. It is misleading to think of early college as accelerated high school. Our students in New Orleans, as in New York, Newark, and California, are Bard undergraduates who are assumed to be thoughtful adults. These pro-
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grams are not about asking students to study the same material in a more advanced textbook, but rather about helping them learn new ways of expressing intellectual curiosity and engaging in critical analysis. These habits of mind are compatible not only with college academics, but also, and more broadly, with effective citizenship. In this sense, the early college seminar is less about the questions that students are answering than the questions they’re asking. The same love of learning that characterizes the Bard education in Annandale defines the early college classroom. Rather than watering down course work, Bard’s early colleges offer younger students an academic experience that emphatically and uncompromisingly reflects the College’s highest standards, guided by the writing-based classroom method pioneered by Bard’s Language and Thinking Program. In the context of high school—a level of education that has been intellectually decimated in the name of assessment—these programs recall students and educators to the pleasures of scholarship: beyond the quantified attainment of technical skills, intellectual work is shown to be rewarding as an affirmation of the strength of human expression and the force of intellect. And, indeed, Anika describes the experience of the Bard classroom in New Orleans much as her peers do across the College: “Sometimes it feels like we haven’t even begun to get at all of the big
questions, but my faculty and classmates really encourage me to press into difficult material. They really care about what I have to say.” Anika and her Bard classmates are taking on truly rich material. The First-Year Seminar in New Orleans—modeled on the First-Year Seminar in Annandale—introduces students to the Bard classroom through a question central to study in the liberal arts and sciences: what does it mean to be human? How have scientists and thinkers across traditions attempted to articulate a common understanding of humanity? Students read Friedrich Nietzsche and James Baldwin, Jamaica Kincaid, George Orwell, and Jean-Jacques Rousseau, a trajectory across much of the modern intellectual tradition. I ask Anika what this work means to her. She thinks for a moment and says, “My studies at Bard have changed my perspective as a student. Our questions are huge and abstract: essentially, what makes us human? We study how other people think and interact, how the world’s ideas fit together.” Ask students across Bard and you’ll hear similar responses: the Bard classroom, be it an early college in New Orleans or a prison in New York, is a place where critical inquiry leads to questions of civic life and the common good. When we think rigorously about how “the world’s ideas fit together,” we take seriously the challenges of tolerance and democracy in a pluralistic world. This is not an exercise in certainty, but rather in curiosity. And it is an exercise of noteworthy relevance in New Orleans, a city that is actively being reimagined and redrawn, a city in which questions of equity are uniquely legible. New Orleans is a particularly appropriate home for the early college, moreover, insofar as that city has become widely regarded as a bellwether for new momentum in education, a place from which Bard’s efforts can have a unique impact, not only on the classroom, but also on public policy. In both cases, that impact revolves around a persistent dynamic in American higher education: that the fewest resources are so often aligned with the greatest need. In those social institutions where we know liberal education can be most transformative—in prisons, in school systems marked by disinvestment and standardization—we often see it provided, if at all, in its most malnourished forms. For the last decade, Bard has stood out among American colleges and universities for presenting real, proven, and meaningful ways of reversing this dynamic. Indeed, Bard’s most socially transformative initiatives, from reshaping prison education to redefining the American high school, are extensions of the classroom. This is a way of answering a question that persisted for Bard—and for me, as a native New Orleanian—in the months following Hurricane Katrina: what is it that we, as a college of the liberal arts and sciences, dedicated to the expansion of knowledge, could possibly bring to bear on a city with such immediate, dire, and concrete needs? Bard’s work in the public interest seeks to answer this question, not out of a worn belief in service learning, but rather from a commitment to learning as the foundation of service. The early colleges are nothing more and nothing less than Bard campuses, where devoted educators invite students to celebrate the breadth of human thought and understanding. That they have driven
photos Craig Mulcahy
academic and social mobility in cities as devastated as New Orleans— where, last year, 98 percent of Bard early college students lived in poverty and all Bard seniors went on to four-year colleges—suggests that the classroom may be the most meaningful resource we can offer. This commitment is foundational to Bard’s presence in New Orleans. In one of the first of many group trips to New Orleans in the semesters following Katrina, Bard students arranged to work within a public high school in the city’s 7th Ward to tutor students at risk of failing their last shot at the Louisiana high school graduation exam. That same school, six years later, is now the site of one of Bard’s two Early College Centers in New Orleans. Through those early colleges, Anika and her classmates have, on their own initiative, recently formed a tutoring program in nearby still-struggling elementary schools. This project, like the earlier Bard tutoring partnership, rose out of the passion that a Bard student felt for reading in the classroom, a passion that Anika is now working to extend to young people throughout New Orleans. Anika and Marcus West—cofounder of this new tutoring program—are clear about the inspiration for it. Anika says, “I’ve always found comfort in books. I want to help other young people find the same comfort.” Marcus adds, “In Bard, we learn that reading and writing are the roots of everything; they’re what you use to broaden your world and your mind. When young people have to face school and life, they should be confident about their ideas and their reading and writing.” These tutoring projects are vital expressions of the connection between democracy and education, between learning and service. As Anika and Marcus’s voices have grown stronger, their critiques more precise, they’ve sought ways to make themselves, and others, heard in a city undergoing dramatic change. Few would doubt that society will benefit from what they have to say. Stephen Tremaine ’07 is director of Bard Early College Centers in New Orleans, which operates two early college campuses embedded within the New Orleans public school system.
Stephen Tremaine ’07
liberal arts in new orleans 15
A sampling of BGIA lectures and speakers
16 bard globalization and international affairs program
bard globalization and international affairs program
ten years of global engagement The 2011–12 academic year marks the 10th anniversary of the Bard Globalization and International Affairs Program (BGIA). During the decade, some 600 students from more than 30 schools and 25 countries have completed the program—centered in midtown Manhattan —which specializes in intensive internship experiences combined with classroom study. BGIA was founded by the late James Clarke Chace, former managing editor of Foreign Affairs magazine and World Policy Journal and Bard’s Paul W. Williams Professor of Government and Public Law and Administration; and Jonathan Becker, now the College’s vice president for international affairs and civic engagement. Chace, a leading foreign policy thinker and historian whose work altered mainstream thought about American global power, authored nine books, including his influential Dean Acheson biography, Acheson: The Secretary of State Who Created the American World. Chace died in 2004. “BGIA is a primary educational channel for shaping how college students understand and interact with the world at large,” says BGIA Director Jonathan Cristol ’00. “BGIA is the best way that a student —not just a Bard student—can get hands on, substantive international affairs experience while remaining involved in the liberal arts curriculum.” BGIA was created to fill a particular gap that its founders saw in the study of international relations: that students would complete college having studied the world and global events but without being actively engaged in those organizations that shape, and attempt to shape, international affairs. The BGIA model, which is unique for undergraduate international affairs programs, accomplishes that goal through its combination of work experience and intensive study of international affairs. Over the past 10 years, BGIA students have interned at more than 140 organizations. Their responsibilities have ranged from interviewing political asylum seekers from Central America to analyzing the efficiency of microfinance loans in Mongolia, at organizations such as the Council on Foreign Relations, Human Rights Watch, Oxford Analytica, the Open Society Foundations, International Crisis Group, Amnesty International, and others. BGIA is highly selective, accepting 30 students each semester and 22 students each summer. Two-thirds of its student body consists of advanced undergraduates and one-third is recent college graduates preparing for graduate or professional schools or a career in international affairs. International students and first-generation Americans constitute more than 50 percent of the group, bringing different perspectives to BGIA’s classrooms.
The program’s alumni/ae list is full of people who are affecting global change from New York City to Hong Kong—such as Betsaida Alcantara ’05, spokesperson for EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson; Christophe Chung ’06, water and sanitation consultant for the World Bank; Angela Edman ’03, staff attorney at the Hong Kong Refugee Advice Centre; Michelle Moses-Eisenstein ’07, project coordinator at the International Center for AIDS Care and Treatment Programs; and Cara Parks ’05, deputy managing editor at Foreign Policy magazine. Betsy Plum ’08 interned at Central American Legal Assistance (CALA) and now is employed there. “I was working with refugees— primarily from El Salvador, Guatemala, and Colombia—fleeing the violence and economic conditions I had studied,” she recalls. “The impact of our country’s foreign policy became a reality for me by listening to the life stories of individuals seeking asylum. I can quite positively say BGIA is to thank for my choice to pursue graduate work in forced migration and conflict studies.” Chace believed in the educational power of students learning from leading figures in international affairs. BGIA also hopes to increase the public’s access to academics and professionals working in international relations. To both ends, the James Clarke Chace Memorial Speaker Series, cosponsored by Foreign Affairs, features these leading figures, who exhibit a diverse ideological and political range, discussing topical issues of global concern. Speakers give students indispensable access to worldwide perspectives on policy. Special events in honor of the 10th anniversary have included lectures in the speaker series such as “Cameron, Obama, and the Future of the Anglo-American Relationship” by Richard Aldous, Bard’s Eugene Meyer Professor of British History and Literature, and Ted Bromund, senior research fellow at the Margaret Thatcher Center for Freedom at the Heritage Foundation. Another lecture in the series was “In Search of a Global Ethic” by Joel Rosenthal, president of Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs, whose daughter Sarah Rosenthal ’12 is studying literature. For other lectures and more information, go to http://bgia.bard.edu. Walter Russell Mead, James Clarke Chace Professor of Foreign Affairs and the Humanities and a leading public policy analyst, also presented a lecture in the anniversary series. In “American Grand Strategy in the 21st Century,” Mead examines how the United States can continue its preeminence on the world stage and determines that the country must take a page from Europe. Mead also explores the forces, such as China, that stand in the way of this American goal. An excerpt adapted from his lecture follows.
ten years of global engagement 17
american grand strategy in the 21st century by Walter Russell Mead
When Gandhi was asked what he thought of Western civilization, he said he thought it would be a good idea. Sometimes American grand strategy feels that way too. What is American grand strategy? Is there even such a concept? I think we do have an implicit national strategy. I’d like to walk you through what I think our strategy—which I agree with by and large—looks like for the 21st century, then talk about some of the problems we face in implementing it. The first question is: What are we trying to accomplish? What does America want the world to be like? If America could get three wishes, we would want the world, during the 21st century, to look more and more like Europe: peaceful; prosperous; open to our commerce, investment, and trade; and—here’s a fourth wish—free. I don’t say that the world is Europe; but if the rest of the world were more like Europe, we’d be involved in fewer quarrels with fewer countries; we’d be worrying less and enjoying more. By “peaceful,” I simply mean that no country in Europe is trying to conquer all the others. “Prosperous” means sharing a steady kind of prosperity with like-minded, peaceful states. “Open to our commerce, investment, and trade”: We’re a country that needs trade and investment in order to flourish. As for “free”: we don’t always like the governments that Europeans pick, but they pick them. Over the years democracy has become more and more settled in Europe, which has more and more liberty. Americans might quarrel about which of these things is most important, but in general, when you think about how Americans want the world to be, this is it. It’s a strange goal, because America doesn’t really have that much power in Europe, and surely the goal of power is to accrue more power and more ability to insist on what you want. While Europe is independent from us in terms of the decisions it makes, strategically Europe is doing exactly what we want. We would much rather quarrel with them endlessly about letting Turkey into the European Union than send armies over there every 20 years to fight off the latest attempt by some European country to conquer everyone. We prefer our vital interests to be embedded in the European order, and if the price for that is losing our power to command, that’s a tradeoff the United States can live with. In 1945, we had all the power that anybody could want in Europe. If they wanted to eat, we had to give them food. The immediate response of Americans was not, “How do we keep this?” We thought, “This won’t last; this will be terrible for our economy.” We immediately set about trying to change what looked like the ultimate accomplishment of the traditional idea of one country’s power over others. I don’t see a hunger for war in either the American government or the American people. Being more like Europe is a goal that other people like as well. This is not the United States imposing some sort of hegemony on 18 bard globalization and international affairs program
people. It’s not an American Dream for the world; it’s a pretty widespread human dream. Putting it in that form helps crystallize an aspiration. The Europeans, by the way, love this idea. We can go to Europeans and say, “This is what we’re trying to do; how can we do it together?” Rather than trying to impose some American vision on other people, we can enlist partners all over the world who will like our grand strategy and, for reasons of their own, want it to work. I think this is a goal that has tremendous appeal. But there are two kinds of obstacles. How we deal with them is going to shape how our policy works out. First, there’s a problem of will: a lot of people either don’t like the idea of Europe as the goal for their societies, or they don’t like the particular way this might conflict with some other ambition that they have. Here are three examples of people who reject the idea that a bourgeois, liberal, free society is where the human race ought to go: terror groups, like Al-Qaeda; religious extremists; and political extremists of different kinds. Maybe they see this goal as the enemy of the visionary, religious order they would like to see. They may be anarchists or communists who have a principled objection to this kind of society, or think that liberal capitalist development needs to be opposed. The way for the United States to deal with these groups is with intelligence and cooperation with other countries. We’ve done a good job of limiting the damage from some of these groups in the last 10 years, and I think we’ll continue to get better results with less policing. Then we move a step up the chain of difficulty to a country like Iran, which is a country, at least in terms of its ruling government, fundamentally opposed to the vision of the world that I’ve laid out. For religious reasons, mixed to some extent with cultural and historical reasons, these mullahs and the people who back them believe the world is moving away from God toward a blasphemous, man-made order, and they need to try to stop it. Iran’s ability to stop a worldwide movement is not large, but it can still make a lot of trouble. The nuclear issue elevates this. If we can get this issue off the table, containment—watching and waiting—is a fine policy. Containment has worked against much bigger powers than Iran. Then there’s China, whose opposition is much more important and complicated. Right now China isn’t sure about whether or not it wants East Asia to look more like Europe as the 21st century rolls on. When I talk to people in China, I find that this idea of a European future is tremendously appealing, but others find this concept an insult to their idea of Chinese nationalism. They see it as an American trick to get China to be content with second-class status. They also do not trust what they see as America’s network of allies surrounding China, which to them appears to be tightening; indeed, it is tightening. So China is alarmed and worried about its own internal future, but is also conscious of a great destiny. Finding a way to get China to
accept our grand strategy as a good outcome for China is one of the biggest jobs of American foreign policy. To make this world order look attractive to China, we have to be as sensitive as possible to Chinese concerns and have a deep understanding of how China looks at the world. The United States also has to try to make sure China understands that going the other way is not pleasant. If China tries to pull in the opposite direction, a lot of other countries will band together and look to the United States to keep China from overturning the Asian applecart. So we have a double policy: engaging China, and keeping a containment policy on the shelf. It’s a difficult balance. Containing China doesn’t mean trying to prevent it from being economically successful. It means making sure that there’s a geopolitical balance of power in Asia so that China can’t just roll over all the countries in the neighborhood. You could ask 10 people what our grand strategy is and get as many answers. The same is true for China. People in the Chinese foreign ministry see Germany as a warning lesson. China would rather reach where Germany is today—rich, happy, not planning to invade anybody—without the intervening steps of two world wars. But the PLA [People’s Liberation Army], China’s military, has a zero-sum, hard-nosed idea about the way the world works and China’s need to counter the U.S. threat. Some professional observers say the big worry
North America live in today—is the end of history. In fact, we’re all developing nations. Some people talk about Fordism, a system of factory workers who are mass-producing and mass-consuming the products they produce, a fairly stable macroeconomic environment. Your generation is going to have to reinvent our domestic political economy in order for this larger foreign policy project to work. When I was growing up, the world was full of escalators. You got on the right escalator and you would automatically ride up to another floor. You went to a good college, you got in to a good law school, then you stepped on the escalator, and if you didn’t do something stupid like jump off or fall, the escalator would carry you up. These days there’s a bunch of rope ladders. They drop down and if you’re quick you can scramble up, but then the ladder is pulled back up. It’s a much more chaotic economy, with big booms and busts. The dollar needn’t be the only reserve currency in the world, but it will retain a significant global role because it’s a more convenient place for investors than other currencies. I don’t think we’re going to see 15 or 20 years of economic stagnation. The U.S. economy will recover. We’re going to have to change the way we do things. In terms of the dollar, you know what they say: if you’re a zebra in a herd with lions around, you don’t have to be faster than the fastest lion; you just have to be faster than one other zebra.
finding a way to get china to accept our grand strategy as a good outcome for china is one of the biggest jobs of american foreign policy.
is that the Chinese military will be like the Japanese military was in the ’30s, that is, not really controlled by the central state authorities. In addition to those who don’t agree with this grand vision, there is the problem of capacity. Many countries would like to be more like Europe, but can’t seem to get there. How do you get development going in poor countries? Egypt has been trying to catch up to France since 1798, when Napoleon conquered Egypt. Arguably Egypt is farther from that goal today than it was in 1798. The difference in the standard of living between a French farmer and an Egyptian peasant wasn’t that great in 1798; it’s much greater now. Figuring out how to help countries develop so that they can be more prosperous and develop politically and openly is going to be immensely difficult. But if this American grand strategy is going to command support among people around the world, we, and they, have to find ways to start making Rwanda and Zambia and Bolivia more like Europe. As that happens, how does the international order become more like a European-style order? For America, this is not a minor problem; an aspect of our grand strategy is being increasingly successful at offering options for development and being able to partner with those working to develop. This is the easier problem in the question of capacity, because when we use the words “developing” and “developed” countries, we’re telling ourselves a comfortable lie: that we know what development is, and we are there. We’re saying that the modern industrial democracy—the world that Europe and
Compared to the dollar right now, the euro is a very limp, lame zebra. The euro may survive this crisis. If it doesn’t, the deutschmark will, or possibly the “neuro,” a northern euro, or “seuro,” a southern euro. But some European country will hold its value. You can park your money in deutschmarks, or new euros, and it will be safe, though it won’t grow. You could put it in Brazilian reais, and it might grow, but it won’t be safe. The dollar is a lot safer than most developingcountry currencies, but it offers more rewards than the euro. In fact, the United States is producing far more than ever before as a manufacturing country. We’re producing three times the goods with less than half the workforce because of automation. Thanks to technology, 2 to 3 percent of the population now feeds all of us much better than 150 years ago. In the same way as agriculture, the proportion of the population working in manufacturing is falling. Americans are reaching postindustrial society early, just as we got to some of these other things early, but we don’t have a model for it. We have to invent it, which is what we did in past generations. I would close by saying that the grand strategy for America at home— to become a prosperous, peaceful, open, free, postindustrial information society—is closely linked to our ability to achieve the vision of a world that’s more like Europe. It’s not only economic success that will give us the resources to carry out any kind of foreign policy, but also the ability of our society to thrive and prosper in the postindustrial age. We will show others how to do it. american grand strategy in the 21st century 19
american university of central asia
bard in bishkek by Jonathan Becker
At the Kyrgyz National Philharmonic Hall in Bishkek last June, 131 students became the first graduates of the American University of Central Asia (AUCA) to receive bachelor of arts degrees from Bard College. Bard President Leon Botstein conducted the Kyrgyz National Philharmonic Orchestra in a rousing concert of Beethoven, Mozart, and Tchaikovsky before delivering a commencement address and distributing Bard diplomas. The ceremony was a cavalcade of national flags and costumes from the more than 30 home countries of AUCA’s student body. Bishkek, the Kyrgyz capital, is bordered by the majestic Tian Shan mountain range—with peaks of nearly 23,000 feet—and the steppes of Kazakhstan, and was a stopping point along the ancient
AUCA’s vibrant intellectual community parallels Bard’s interests in educational innovation and civic engagement. Virtual courses are taught jointly with the American University of Afghanistan and attended by students of both universities. Last October, the newly founded Central Asian Studies Institute at AUCA held its first major conference, “Twenty Years of Central Asian Independence: Shared Past, Separate Paths?” It attracted scholars from prominent institutions in the United States, United Kingdom, France, Germany, and Hungary, as well as Central Asia. The 2012–13 academic year will see the first entering class of AUCA’s New Generation Academy, which educates advanced high school students from underprivileged and underserved communities in Kyrgyzstan. Ray Peterson, inaugural
auca has adapted many of the central elements of the bard curriculum, including an orientation program inspired by bard’s language and thinking program, a yearlong first-year seminar, and a senior project required of all seniors. as at bard, first-year seminar strengthens analytical skills and encourages students to consider themselves citizens of a broader world.
Silk Road. Although surrounded by stunning scenery and known for the hospitality of its people, Bishkek sits 10 time zones away from Annandale-on-Hudson, making it seem an unlikely place to establish a Bard presence. However, Bard’s dual-degree program with the American University of Central Asia is one of the College’s most innovative and important partnerships, as Bishkek is the government seat of one of the world’s newest democracies. AUCA, the leading university in Central Asia, is uniquely committed to providing a liberal arts education in the region. AUCA emerged in the 1990s—as did the Faculty of Liberal Arts and Sciences (Smolny College), Bard’s partnership with St. Petersburg State University in Russia—during a period of openness and experimentation following the collapse of the Soviet Union. The university was founded in 1993 as the Kyrgyz American School within Kyrgyz State National University. In 1997, it became the American University of Kyrgyzstan, before adopting its current name in 2002. Today, AUCA enrolls nearly 1,200 students and offers undergraduate programs in 11 subjects, a master of arts program, and a preparatory program for high school students. 20 american university of central asia
principal of Bard High School Early College in Manhattan, serves on the academy’s advisory board. Although the Kyrgyz Republic lacks the gas and oil resources of its neighbors in Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan, its geographical location—bordering China, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan —and its relative proximity to Afghanistan and Pakistan lend it importance in the international system, and make it the object of a 21st-century “great game” (referring to the tactical rivalry over Central Asia between the British and Russian empires during the 19th century). In acknowledgment of this strategic significance, AUCA often hosts important international visitors. In the last year alone, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, National Security Council adviser Michael McFaul (recently named U.S. ambassador to Russia), and Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili have met with AUCA President Andrew Wachtel, faculty, and students. While a majority of the student body comes from Kyrgyzstan, international students hail from all five former Central Asian Soviet republics, as well as Russia, Afghanistan, Iran, China, and South Korea. Students are attracted to AUCA’s academic reputation and its
video conference—despite challenges posed by the time difference— international environment. Bard has started a study-abroad program to discuss the evolution of the shared curriculum. and sent its first seven students to Bishkek in fall 2011. AUCA gradStudents have also participated in this international relationship. uates can be found in almost every leading institution in Kyrgyzstan; Haley Bader ’13, who attended AUCA for the fall 2011 semester, says, they work in that country and across the globe for organizations such “I couldn’t have asked for a more fulfilling study-abroad opportunity. as the BBC, Citibank, Cisco Systems, Deloitte & Touche, Google, IBM, The travel through Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan, the language immerUSAID, World Bank, and many more. Alumni/ae are enrolled in gradsion, the amazing people, and the privilege of living in the wonderful uate programs at universities such as Harvard, Yale, the Sorbonne, city of Bishkek have given me a new perspective on what it means to and Central European University. be worldly, and inspired me to continue my study of foreign cultures, The Bard-AUCA partnership began to form in 2008 with particularly those of Central Asia.” Two AUCA juniors attended Bard encouragement from the Open Society Foundations, an AUCA for the spring 2011 semester (five more arrived in January). Three supporter from its earliest beginnings. Bard’s experience in adapting Bard students delivered papers at AUCA’s International Student liberal arts education to a post-Soviet environment in Russia made Conference on Freedom and Responsibility in April 2011: Travis Bard an attractive partner, particularly as Russian historian Ellen Bostick ’12, Jeremy Carter-Gordon ’11 (recipient of a prestigious Hurwitz, then AUCA president, was in the midst of a major push Watson Fellowship), and Zachary Israel ’12 (who was attending to integrate the liberal arts more firmly into the AUCA curriculum. Central European University in Budapest, Hungary, for a semester). In 2009, a formal agreement was reached between Hurwitz and An anchor of the Bard-AUCA relationship has been Bard faculty Bard President Leon Botstein for long-term cooperation. This has member Peg Peoples, a longtime Language and Thinking Program only deepened since Andrew Wachtel, former dean of the graduate and First-Year Seminar instructor, who for the past year and a half school at Northwestern University, assumed the AUCA presidency in has lived in Bishkek and served as the summer of 2010. AUCA’s director of college writAt the core of the partnership ing. She has helped AUCA faculty is the dual-degree program. AUCA prepare for teaching L&T and has adapted many of the central First-Year Seminar; held workelements of the Bard curriculum, shops on how to advise Senior including an orientation program Projects; and helped to develop a inspired by Bard’s Language and general education curriculum. Thinking Program (L&T), a year“When I ask first-year stulong First-Year Seminar, and a dents at AUCA, ‘What are your Senior Project required of all senfirst thoughts about this passage?’ iors. These cornerstones of the to promote dialogue, I am asking Bard curriculum are more than what is, for many of them, a items on a checklist; for AUCA loaded and intellectually fraught students, they necessitate new ways political and cultural question,” of thinking and engaging with American University of Central Asia commencement she says. “I am asking them to their course content and with engage their own thinking and agency, when all of their prior educaone another. As at Bard, First-Year Seminar strengthens analytical skills tional experience has taught them that they are simply passive vessels and encourages students to consider themselves citizens of a broader to be filled with knowledge provided by the teacher.” world. The course examines texts ranging from Plato to Dostoevsky Peoples, who founded AUCA’s new writing center and hires and to Arendt, from poems to manifestos, and offers symposia that protrains student writing and math tutors, believes that effective teaching mote student discussions, presentations, debates, and essays: unfaencompasses more than just the transmission of subject matter. As miliar territory to students at traditional institutions of higher she puts it, “Excellent teaching, first of all, gains students’ attention learning in the region. and engages them in the importance and relevance of what is being This world citizenship has also become real through a series of learned. Effective teaching and engaged learning also develop the administrative, faculty, and student exchanges. AUCA faculty have skills of analysis, synthesis, judgment, and evaluation—all in a stuvisited classes in Annandale, given guest lectures, and attended workdent-centered classroom.” As Bard and AUCA deepen their mutual shops sponsored by Bard’s Institute for Writing and Thinking. Bard commitment to the liberal arts tradition, Bishkek shares its identifiprofessors and administrators have made the 25-hour flight to cation with Bard as “a place to think.” Bishkek, including Dean of the College and anthropology professor Michèle D. Dominy and Vice President for Administration Jim Brudvig. Jonathan Becker is vice president and dean for international affairs and Once there, faculty have conducted workshops ranging from engaged civic engagement, director of the Bard Center for Civic Engagement, and reading to the use of writing to deepen student understanding of associate professor of political studies. First-Year Seminar texts. Bard and AUCA faculty meet regularly via photo Marie Regan
bard in bishkek 21
22 bardâ€™s musical legacy
photo Richard Renaldi
bard’s musical legacy
luis garcia-renart by Kyle Gann
In March 1962, Luis Garcia-Renart came to Bard to play a cello recital. He stayed for 50 years. Violinist Emil Hauser, one of the founders of the famous Budapest Quartet, was then teaching at Bard, and he had been one of Luis’s chamber music coaches in Switzerland. Luis and his pianist sister Marta were touring the Northeast, and Hauser said, “Bard is between Rochester and Boston; why don’t you play here?” They did, and slept at the house of President Reamer Kline. The next morning, over breakfast, Luis was offered a teaching job. He had no college degrees. He had been pulled out of a Mexican high school in eighth grade to study cello in Europe. But he had one of the most impressive pedigrees of any cellist of his generation, and, he speculates today, Hauser found his playing philosophy simpatico. For 50 years Luis Garcia-Renart has been central to the Bard Music Program. His aim with students, he says, is to “wake up what’s inside them,” and teach them to “find their way into the piece.” He is dismissive of mere technical perfection, telling his students, “I want to hear you play Bach.” His highest compliment is “fearless.” He treats every student as an individual, and is as willing to work with beginners as with virtuosi; often, he says, the latter can learn something from the former. Luis is likewise a virtuoso at defusing disputes and making everyone around him feel valued. These qualities came partly from having studied closely with some of the greatest instrumental teachers the world could offer, including Pablo Casals and Mstislav Rostropovich. Luis’s father was forced to escape Spain by Francisco Franco’s fascist takeover in the 1930s; Luis and his mother followed him to Mexico in 1941, landing in the New World on December 7, the day America entered World War II. From the age of 5, Luis studied guitar with a wonderful teacher. But Luis’s father encouraged him to take cello, citing Pablo Casals, who, after all, was another Catalan exile, and one of the great figures of his day, known as much for his humanitarian work and moral stance as for his fabulous playing. Luis studied cello with Imre Hartmann of the Lehner Quartet, which had settled in Mexico City to sit out the war. When he reached age 14, an aunt and a composer friend who knew Casals took Luis on the long journey to southern France to play for Casals and ask his advice. Impressed, Casals offered several possibilities for study before the young man was ready to apprentice to the master himself. Luis went to live in a pensione in Bern while studying with Rudolph von Tobel, a Casals acolyte known today from some classic recordings. Tobel taught Luis everything: piano, music theory, harmony, counterpoint, art history, general education. Sándor Végh, of the Hungarian Végh Quartet, coached him in chamber music, and he studied composition
with the eminent Hungarian composer Sándor Veress. (“My entire life I’ve been surrounded by Hungarian accents,” says Luis.) Eventually Luis graduated to studying with Casals himself, spending half of the year in France and the other half in Puerto Rico with the great man. Because they both spoke Catalan and were both refugees, Casals particularly enjoyed talking to Luis, as much about the political situation as about music. More important, Casals instilled in him a sense that music was about personality, not technical perfection. “If you don’t know how to play something,” the master told Luis, “sing it like a peasant would!” Interestingly, Casals seems to have had little idea about pedagogy other than teaching by example, a lack for which Luis amply compensated with his next distinguished teacher, Rostropovich. “Casals,” Luis elaborates, “had no idea technically. He just did it, and if I asked how to do something, he would just pick up the cello and say, ‘Like this!’ Whereas with Rostropovich, I would say, ‘I’ve been practicing this passage and I miss it seven times out of ten.’ He would say, ‘Ah, no problem, you first do this, and then that,’ and it would be perfect.” Through the legacy of his mentors, Luis represents an irreplaceable connection to prewar Europe’s classical music culture. Because his teachers had so much enjoyed teaching, he says, he wanted to teach too, and although he had assumed that the opportunity would come much later in life, when it was offered to him, he just said “yes.” And he said “yes” to everything at Bard. In 1962, with only 300 students on campus, the College boasted few jazz players; Luis played bass so there could be a jazz band. He arranged music for Theater Program productions. He is one of the reasons (Professor of Dance Aileen Passloff being another) that Bard has been home to one of the country’s few flamenco programs. (Daughter Kati ’89 taught flamenco dance at Bard and son Evan graduates in May.) Luis also conducted the Bard College Community Orchestra for 15 years and the Bard College Community Chorus for 23 years. “At Bard I was always allowed to do whatever I wanted,” he says. “I would not change my life if I had to do it all over again,” Luis adds. “The reason I’m so successful, and I’m not bashful about saying this, is that I don’t teach by the book.” As Casals was a spiritual force, Luis has likewise been for half a century a spiritual force in the Bard Music Program, the warrior-chief who has always tried to do “what I felt was honorable.” He has given up performing in recent years, but to hear him play the Bach Cello Suites, a decade ago, was to be swept out of the 20th century into a calmer, more elegant world. Kyle Gann is associate professor of music. luis garcia-renart 23
holiday party On a chilly Thursday night in December, Bardians of all ages gathered to celebrate the holidays at 24 Fifth, the elegant, Gilded Age ballroom of 24 Fifth Avenue in the old Fifth Avenue Hotel in New York City. More than 400 alumni/ae and their guests turned out for the party hosted by the Bard–St. Stephen’s Alumni/ae Association. Back by popular demand, the Holiday Party, the first in two years, had something for everyone: alumni/ae could enjoy a cocktail at one of the two bars, stand on the edge of the sunken terrazzo dance floor and peruse the crowd, or sit with friends at tables or on the velvet banquettes throughout the room. Some people arrived in glittering gold and silver, in classic Holiday Party style, while others came from work in jeans or suits. Leon was there, of course, catching up with alumni/ae and being introduced to new spouses and babies (every Holiday Party has one or two babies in attendance). Faculty and staff from Annandale mixed with alumni/ae who ranged from the Class of 1949 to the Class of 2011. The crowd ebbed and flowed, and the three-hour party seemed to be over much too quickly, but the hot chocolate and cookies served on the way out softened the transition into the cold evening. Alumni/ae who still wanted more time together walked across Washington Square to the after-party at Amity Hall. The after-hours gathering, hosted by the Bard–St. Stephen’s Young Alumni/ae Committee, went on until the wee hours in true Bard fashion, and those who had to work in Annandale in the morning found themselves, as in previous years, on the late train to Poughkeepsie. photos Karl Rabe
24 on and off campus
On and Off Campus Bard in Berlin
Conservatory of Music Highlights
The College’s newest campus, in Berlin, Germany, is part of Bard’s international network of liberal arts B.A. programs. The latest satellite institution—called ECLA of Bard, a Liberal Arts University in Berlin—was given to the College by the Christian A. Johnson Endeavor Foundation as part of a larger gift that includes financial support for the transition. Bard will expand academic programs, and graduates will receive a dual degree accredited in Germany and the United States. New semester- and yearlong study abroad programs will be introduced this year to take advantage of Berlin’s rich resources in arts and culture; politics, economics, and society; and history and literature. The new programs will include an internship component and is expected to appeal to U.S. students, among others. In the future, several master of arts degree programs are planned. ECLA (European College of Liberal Arts) was founded in 1999 in the aftermath of German reunification and the democratic revolutions of Central and Eastern Europe. “We are honored and excited to have this opportunity to make ECLA thrive as part of Bard,” says Bard College President Leon Botstein. “The ideals of ECLA’s program reflect the finest of the liberal arts tradition, as well as an important step in the extension of the liberal arts to European students. At the same time, we look forward to creating a new set of programs compatible with ECLA’s existing mission.” In January, at a special event, Botstein welcomed about a hundred ECLA students, faculty, and staff in Berlin to the Bard family. Alumni/ae from Bard graduate and undergraduate programs included Stacey Blatt ’79, Rita Pavone ’87, Anja Brogan ’00, Gabriel Shalom ’05, Hannah Goldstein ’06, Laurie Sermos MFA ’06, Elen Fluegge ’08, Elena Gilbert ’10, Anja Boenicke ’11, and Tyme Khleifi ’12. Bard has long been a leader in bringing the liberal arts model to new locations throughout the world. These include dual degrees offered with St. Petersburg State University (Russia), American University of Central Asia (Kyrgyzstan), Al-Quds University (West Bank), and the University of the Witwatersrand (South Africa). Visit www.bard.edu/globalstudy.
Conservatory Orchestra and Friends to Tour China
MAT Helps Bronx Students Reach Goal All seniors at the South Bronx’s International Community High School (ICHS), at which the Bard Master of Arts in Teaching Program has its New York City base, will apply to at least five public or private colleges by the end of the school year—and the students are well on the way to meeting the target. In December, 98 percent of the class applied to college. The Bard College Office of Educational Opportunity Programs (BEOP) and Bard MAT Program received a state grant to help academically and financially disadvantaged students apply to private, liberal arts colleges. It was the first time the two programs had paired on such a project and their focus was ICHS, where all of the students are recently arrived immigrants, from more than 15 countries, who have been in the United States for four years (or less) by the time they become seniors. The majority are the first in their family to apply to, and attend, college. Working with school staff, BEOP Director Ariana Stokas ’00 and Justine Haemmerli ’06 MAT ’07, site director of Bard’s MAT Program in New York City, developed a comprehensive plan for the 2011–12 school year. The Bard LEAP College Access Program included individualized materials for every 12th-grade student, an advisory curriculum for the entire Senior Institute (11th and 12th grades combined) from 2011–12, off-site field trips, and professional development workshops for teachers.
Bard’s musical reach is extending. In June, The Bard College Conservatory of Music Orchestra, conducted by Bard President Leon Botstein, will perform in Hong Kong, Taiwan, and on mainland China in Shanghai, Beijing, Guangzhou, Wuhan, and Tianjin. Accompanying the orchestra will be a group of patrons, who will take a tour of China with Bard professors; they will visit museums and landmarks such as the Great Wall and Terra Cotta Warriors and Horses, and attend the Conservatory concerts. In Beijing and Shanghai, the orchestra will be joined by Bard faculty artists and Chinese and American scholars for a two-day presentation of “Tchaikovsky and His World,” including panel discussions, chamber music, preconcert lectures, and an orchestral concert. The production is based on 22 years of experience presenting the Bard Music Festival in Annandale-on-Hudson. An additional, special concert and lecture at the Shanghai Conservatory, “Shanghai Refugees,” will explore the history and experience of immigrants, particularly Jews, in Shanghai during World War II.
Conservatory Performance Includes World Premiere The Conservatory of Music Graduate Vocal Arts Program presented an opera double bill on March 9 and 11 at the Fisher Center for the Performing Arts. The program—conducted by James Bagwell, chair of Bard’s undergraduate Music Program and codirector of the Graduate Program in Conducting—featured Four Sisters by Elena Langer and Nélée et Myrthis by Jean-Philippe Rameau. Four Sisters, which had its world premiere in the program, is a contemporary opera influenced by Anton Chekhov’s play Three Sisters. The operas were preceded by presentations of works by Montéclair and Monteverdi.
College Launches MBA in Sustainability Sustainable or green businesses—having no adverse impact on the environment, community, or economy, while still maintaining a profit—are growing in importance and impact. Companies small and large are taking up the cause, from green start-ups to giants such as IBM, with its Smarter Planet campaign, and GE, whose ecomagination project is aimed at creating more energy-efficient and environmentally friendly business solutions. In light of this trend and growing student demand, Bard College is spearheading a global movement to revolutionize business programs by launching a two-year master of business administration in sustainability this fall. “The Bard MBA is one of only a handful of programs around the world that build sustainability into the curriculum from the ground up,” says Bard Center for Environmental Policy (Bard CEP) Director Eban Goodstein, who heads up the new program. “It’s not something we would have imagined as recently as four years ago.” Based in New York City, the program is a partnership between Bard CEP and the Levy Economics Institute of Bard College. In addition to sustainable business practices in such areas as economics, environment, and social equity, the Bard MBA also focuses on basic business principles. Faculty and guest lecturers include scholars in business, economics, and environmental policy from Bard’s full-time faculty and leaders in the fields of business sustainability, journalism, and consultancy. “Sustainability is mainstream, and increasingly a key factor in corporate strategy,” says Goodstein, who has also been working with General Motors to refine its sustainable strategy. “It’s time for business education to catch up.” on and off campus 25
Levy Scholars Look at Global Financial Crisis
Arendt Center Endowment Receives Award
The Levy Economics Institute of Bard College is sponsoring, with the Chinabased Institute of Economics of Nankai University (NKIE) and Center of Political Economics Studies of Nankai University, a two-day seminar on the global financial crisis and development of new models of capitalism. The seminar, which will be held June 9 and 10 at Nankai University in Tianjin, China, is aimed at increasing the understanding of the impact of the crisis in America and Europe on China and the global economy, especially from the views of political economics, post-Keynesian theory, and the theories of Hyman P. Minsky. Participants will explore the causes and results of the crisis in developed countries; the impacts of the crisis on China and the global economy; the development of new models of capitalism in the aftermath of the crisis; and the Minskyan approach to transformation of the capitalist system. The crisis was also at the forefront of the 21st Annual Hyman P. Minsky Conference: Debt, Deficits, and Financial Instability, which took place at the Ford Foundation’s headquarters in New York City. Organized by the Levy Institute with support from the Ford Foundation, the two-day event, on April 11 and 12, featured leading policy makers, economists, and analysts. The experts addressed the challenge to global growth represented by the eurozone debt crisis; the impact of the credit crunch on the economic and financial markets outlook; and the sustainability of the U.S. economic recovery in the absence of support from monetary and fiscal policy. Also discussed were reregulation of the financial system; the design of a new financial architecture; and the larger implications of the debt crisis for U.S. economic policy and for the international financial and monetary system as a whole, among other issues. The Ford Foundation supports efforts to reform global institutions to make them more transparent, accountable, and effective in delivering financial security. This includes developing alternative governance structures; bringing new voices to global public dialogue; and building broad alliances—with academic partners such as the Levy Institute, advocacy groups, and governments—to ensure that these institutions advance the public good. Among the distinguished speakers were Esther L. George, president and CEO, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City; Christine M. Cumming, first vice president, Federal Reserve Bank of New York; J. Nellie Liang, director of the Office of Financial Stability Policy and Research, Federal Reserve Board; Peter Praet, chief economist and executive board member, European Central Bank; Andrea Enria, chairperson, European Banking Authority; and Nobel Prize winner Joseph E. Stiglitz, professor of finance and economics, Columbia University.
A National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Challenge Grant of $425,000, awarded to the College’s Hannah Arendt Center for Politics and Humanities, will help raise a $1.7 million endowment for the center. The NEH grant requires recipients to match funds on a three-to-one basis; the grant and its matching funds will help support the Hannah Arendt Center Fellows Program, which provides postdoctoral fellowships for humanities scholars doing research related to the thinking and works of Arendt, as well as access to the Hannah Arendt Collection at Bard College. “An NEH challenge grant is an extraordinary opportunity to secure and expand the Arendt Center’s mission to bring Arendt’s humanist approach to thinking about worldly questions to a wider group of engaged citizens,” says Roger Berkowitz, director of the Hannah Arendt Center. “We are especially excited to inaugurate Arendt Center Working Groups in the Humanities, which will bring scholars from around the world to Bard for weeklong intensive reading groups on major texts in the humanities.” Also, the Hannah Arendt Center, Human Rights Project, and College Trustee Peter H. Maguire ’88 presented “New Frontiers in Human Rights Law,” two days of panels at the College.
Science, Math, and Computing Honors The Division of Science, Mathematics, and Computing at Bard has received more than $310,000 in new grants, while retaining more than $2.7 million of continuing award money. In addition to winning a $60,000 Henry Dreyfus TeacherScholar Award, Professor of Chemistry Craig Anderson secured a National Science Foundation Research in Undergraduate Institutions (RUI) award, receiving $198,000 for his research project on the synthesis of novel, cyclometallated complexes to obtain compounds with interesting properties and to advance contemporary research on C-H bond activation. The award, distributed over three years, includes funds to support undergraduate scientific research. Assistant Professor of Chemistry Emily McLaughlin collected a SingleInvestigator Cottrell College Science Award from the Research Corporation for Science Advancement, a $35,000 grant enabling her to pursue research in asymmetric photochemical transformations. Students participating in McLaughlin’s project will have a primary role in the synthesis, characterization, and analysis of all compounds, thus gaining the opportunity to make real and significant contributions to the field of catalytic asymmetric photochemistry.
Toshiba Assists Bard–Japan Science Exchange
Assistant Professor of Chemistry Swapan Jain with visiting BHSEC and Japanese students photo Pete Mauney ’93, MFA ’00
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A grant from the Toshiba of America Foundation funded a science exchange between Bard High School Early College (BHSEC) Manhattan and Nagoya University Affiliated Upper and Lower Secondary Schools of Nagoya, Japan. The students shared individual science projects and completed a joint project in environmental science. Nine students and two teachers from Japan spent eight days in the United States during the winter. They came to the Bard campus for a day, along with nine students from BHSEC Manhattan. While at Bard, the students visited with chemistry faculty. The Japanese students were paired with American students, stayed with their families, and also made time for some sightseeing in New York City. In March, the BHSEC students traveled to Japan, where they worked on two projects using PCR (polymerase chain reaction) technology. The students first scored their own genotype to predict alcohol tolerance or the ability to taste bitterness. They then used PCR technology to detect genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in food products from Japan and the United States. Students shared results and discussed global issues surrounding GMOs.
Working for Peace in South Sudan While the world keeps watch on news like the European economic recovery, the U.S. elections, and the repercussions of the Arab Spring, many nations in Africa continue their painfully slow progress toward peace and stability. In northeast Africa, Vincent Valdmanis ’03 serves in the Recovery, Reintegration, and Peacebuilding Office of the United Nations Mission in the Republic of South Sudan (UNMISS). South Sudan is a landlocked nation that shares borders with several countries, including Ethiopia (to the east), Kenya (southeast), and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (southwest). It seceded from Sudan (now North Sudan) after the second Sudanese Civil War ended in 2005. South Sudan officially became an independent country on July 9, 2011. But the legacy of the war years—little or no infrastructure development, and widespread destruction and displacement— poses a great challenge to the country’s estimated eight million people. UNMISS’s charge is to oversee peacekeeping efforts and foster state building and economic development. Valdmanis’s role, as an early recovery officer, is to help reduce poverty through improvements such as access to health care and education for youth and women. Another critical aspect of his job is to help coordinate the UN’s participation in the massive repatriation of South Sudanese, especially from North Sudan. “The BBC reported that this is the largest voluntary peacetime movement of people anywhere in the world since World War II,” Valdmanis says. “An estimated one million people are expected to move to South Sudan; about half that number have come so far. It’s a major logistical operation to move so many people across a very forbidding landscape, with scant local opportunities to sustain livelihoods and fewer than 100 kilometers of paved roads in an area larger than Texas. My duties include counting the numbers of returnees, mapping their movements, and helping ensure that UN agencies provide shelter, food, and water. Also, I monitor the land distribution process in which returnees are provided plots of land, which gets tricky because of complicated politics around this issue.” Valdmanis, who grew up in a “small backwoods town” in New Hampshire’s White Mountains, has been keyed in to politics since his Bard days, when he was a political studies major under adviser James Clarke Chace. Valdmanis’s
Vincent Valdmanis ’03 (left) meets with security officials during elections for South Sudan independence. photo Courtesy of Vincent Valdmanis
carjacking: “I was pulled out of a vehicle, tied up and blindfolded, then thrown into a shipping container. I had a real gun pointed at my head. The point is to stress trainees as much as possible so we can maintain ‘situation awareness’: we need to be able to account for colleagues or negotiate with captors.” His day-to-day life and work in the region is not all stressful, however. He and his coworkers watch “a lot of illegally pirated” TV programs—The Wire, The West Wing, Dexter. “A friend has a projector and we watch stuff outside powered by a generator.” Valdmanis recognizes the difficulties that lie ahead for South Sudan, a severely underdeveloped nation following decades of war. “There are few schools and clinics; South Sudan has some of the world’s highest maternal mor-
i was pulled out of a vehicle, tied up and blindfolded, then thrown into a shipping container. i had a real gun pointed at my head. Senior Project, “Total Information Awareness,” focused on surveillance and state power during security crises, comparing the initial U.S. domestic security response to 9/11 with the British government’s reaction to IRA terrorism. He won a prestigious Watson Fellowship to travel to England, Denmark, India, the Netherlands, and Hong Kong, where he explored the political and social implications of surveillance systems, their technical functions, and how issues of privacy, authority, and security are approached in various cultural contexts. He then studied public policy and economic development at the Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service at New York University. After earning his master’s degree, he accepted a job with the United Nations in New York, then took up his post in South Sudan. “The emphasis on writing at Bard is something I use all the time in my work,” Valdmanis says. “The UN is a forum for all kinds of language: diplomatic, legal, and narrative reporting. Humanitarian and development circles have specific protocols of language. Clarity of writing—and sometimes strategic ambiguity—is a key part of working in the UN.” To prepare staff for overseas tenures, the UN requires participation in security training. Valdmanis’s “hardcore” training session included a simulated
tality rates and very low levels of literacy,” Valdmanis says. “It has a miniscule formal economy. These are challenging conditions for state building.” Another major hurdle to stabilizing and developing the country is the volatility, triggered by oil, between North and South Sudan. “The South has the oil and the North has the pipeline and export capacity,” explains Valdmanis. “How oil revenue is shared between the two countries is key. Both sides are taking a hard line. Recently, they decided to shut down oil production, which will affect 98 percent of the public budget in the South and 60 to 80 percent in the North. In both countries, the livelihoods of ordinary people will be greatly diminished.” Despite the challenges ahead, Valdmanis is committed to the painstaking effort required to make the necessary structural changes. In 10 years, Valdmanis says, “I’d still like to be working on development issues in postconflict settings. It’s a messy business, full of unsavory compromises. But those compromises are necessary to economic and social justice, which are central to continued peace.” —William Stavru ’87
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From Science Lab to Science Policy What’s required to make the leap from the rational scientific world, ruled by the laws of cause and effect, to the less-rational world of U.S. politics? Speed. As an American Chemical Society congressional fellow, Emily Grumbling ’04 has had “to rapidly discern what drives action on Capitol Hill, and become familiar with the quirks of the legislative process. It’s a much faster pace than an academic research environment, and I’ve had to learn quickly what questions to ask, and whom to ask. Working on the Hill has been like drinking from a fire hose. It’s a great training experience—a one-year crash course in everything.” Grumbling’s transition from the academy (and the laboratory) to Capitol Hill was intense. With no prior policy development experience, she started working for U.S. Congresswoman Diana DeGette (D–Colo.) on October 5, 2011, the day she turned 29—after almost a full month of orientation activities and interviews with individual Congressional offices, on both sides of the hill and both sides of the aisle. She is pleased to be employed in DeGette’s office because of the congresswoman’s role on the House Energy and Commerce Committee and her leadership on issues important to Grumbling, including women’s health, the advancement of clean energy technologies, and responsible stewardship of the environment. The fellowship is funded by the American Chemical Society as part of the American Association for the Advancement of Science’s (AAAS) Science and Technology Policy Fellowship program. The aim is to involve scientists directly in the policy-making process so that they can provide expertise to policy makers—both elected and appointed—and also develop communication tools and strategies to ensure that scientific research has a positive impact on society. Grumbling’s policy interests include energy, the environment, science education, and diplomacy. Issues she’s focused on include hydraulic fracturing
offices are eager to take on a Fellow, and they respect and often rely upon science in crafting policy. I’m thrilled to be in an office with a downto-earth, intelligent, and logical boss, and to work with her incredibly bright, dedicated staff.” After graduating from Bard, Grumbling earned a Ph.D. in physical chemistry at the University of Arizona. Her research expertise is in Emily Grumbling ’04. photo Joseph Baker negative-ion photoelectron spectroscopy, which she describes as “knocking electrons off of molecules with a laser and photographing them to learn about how they were held together.” However, after spending years in the lab, Grumbling was looking for a change. She applied for the AAAS fellowship through the American Chemical Society and was deeply honored when she was one of only two chemistry Fellows chosen by the society. More important, the fellowship offered Grumbling a way to apply scientific method to solving real-world problems. “To walk into this office without a policy background and be able to help make things happen is an incredible experience,” says Grumbling. “I’ve got to have a workable knowledge of a broad range of topics—a stark contrast from my research experience, which was deep but narrowly focused. After being so engaged in research for so long, I’m shifting my focus to what’s going on in the world, what people care about, and what I can do as a scientist and citizen to
many congressional offices are eager to take on a fellow, and they respect and often rely upon science in crafting policy. (DeGette is a leading advocate for the disclosure of components of fluids used in the gas-extraction process commonly referred to as fracking) and nanotechnology, but she also can be called on to assist with any policy or communications work that is related to the physical sciences. Her days are spent on a range of activities that help her gather and share information for her office. She attends briefings, workshops, and hearings; writes memos and follows up on constituent concerns; conducts research and strategic planning; and evaluates legislation for the congresswoman’s office. “The work changes day to day,” she says. “If we are in session I may be working on issues to be taken up by my boss’s committee. For example, I did research and prepared materials for a recent budget hearing.” The biggest challenge in working on the Hill, according to Grumbling, is adjusting to its rapid information flow. Each issue requires extensive knowledge and research, while objectives change and new information surfaces. “I’m learning to filter more,” Grumbling says. “This is difficult because the scientist in me wants to immerse in all of the details about any given topic, but there isn’t enough time.” So far, Grumbling’s time on the Hill has not dampened her enthusiasm. Or her optimism. She says, “It is a strange time to be working in Congress, when their approval rating is at an all-time low. However, I do think that members of Congress care about their constituents and that good things can come out of Washington—even though, with the fiscal climate and a divided Congress, few bills pass into law, and this Congress is very partisan. Many congressional
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make things better. I want to promote a positive view of science and encourage science-based decision making—something we need more of in this country.” When her fellowship term ends on August 31, Grumbling is considering another policy fellowship in an agency in another branch of federal government. She is a finalist for an AAAS Executive Branch Fellowship in the areas of energy, environment, and/or agriculture. Her interviews at executive branch agencies are likely to include the Department of Energy, Environmental Protection Agency, and the National Science Foundation. “This would be a great opportunity to help implement programs mandated by the legislative branch I’m in now,” she says with excitement. “It would allow me to narrow my focus a bit and make new use of everything I’ve learned from this experience with Congress.” Or she might consider other avenues now that she has a richer understanding of the potential impact of her work: “I haven’t ruled out going back to scientific research or teaching college chemistry. If I do, these experiences will inform my future scientific inquiries.” At Bard, Grumbling was a double major in chemistry and film, taking advantage of the College’s multidisciplinary approach to education. She has a passion for chemistry but the role of “chemist” doesn’t define her. “At Bard, I learned to see beauty in everything and to appreciate multiple world views while still thinking for myself,” says Grumbling. “Such perspective is incredibly useful in a political environment.” —William Stavru ’87
Four Garner Iris Foundation Awards
The Bard Graduate Center honored four outstanding contributions to patronage and scholarship in the decorative arts at the 16th annual Iris Foundation Awards on April 18. The Koç family recently endowed a portion of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s new Islamic Galleries. The family’s work continues Turkish entrepreneur and philanthropist Vehbi Koç’s legacy by preserving and promoting Turkish cultural resources through museums and research centers. Hans Ottomeyer served as president of the Deutsches Historisches Museum and taught at Humboldt University in Berlin, dedicating his scholarly work to exploring history as expressed through objects, material culture, and works of art. Alisa LaGamma is curator of African art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Her recent exhibition and accompanying publication, Heroic Africans, Legendary Leaders, Iconic Sculptures, have received critical acclaim, and her work has been instrumental in rethinking the history of sub-Saharan African art and culture. Furniture dealer Mark McDonald is credited with placing postwar design— called “mid-century modern”—securely in the modernist lexicon and raising appreciation to serious scholarship. He opened the influential gallery Fifty/50 in New York City in the early 1980s, and in 2002 opened Mark McDonald, selling decorative arts and furniture in Hudson, New York. The awards luncheon, held at 583 Park Avenue in New York City, benefited the BGC Scholarship Fund, which provides financial assistance to future scholars in the field of decorative arts, design history, and material culture studies. The awards are named for BCG founder and director Susan Weber’s mother, Iris Weber.
Norman Manea, writer in residence and Francis Flournoy Professor in European Studies and Culture, has become a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature of Great Britain—the first Romanian writer honored by the prestigious institution. He also won the 2011 Nelly Sachs Prize, a major German literary award for “outstanding literary contribution to the promotion of understanding between people.” The General Theological Seminary (GTS) awarded an honorary doctor of divinity degree to the Rev. Bruce Chilton ’71, College chaplain, Bernard Iddings Bell Professor of Religion, and executive director of the Institute of Advanced Theology. A 1974 GTS graduate, Chilton is rector of St. John the Evangelist in Barrytown, New York. Chilton also earned a degree from Cambridge University and has written 50 books and more than 100 articles about the New Testament and early Judaism. Peter Sourian, professor emeritus of English, received the Gold Medal of the Armenian Ministry of Culture during the fourth annual Conference of Armenian Writers in Foreign Languages, which took place last fall in Armenia. Writers, translators, and editors from 10 countries participated. The Armenian Ministries of Culture and Diaspora organized the conference with the Armenian Writers Union, World Armenian Congress, and Union of Armenians of Russia. Poet John Ashbery, Charles P. Stevenson Jr. Professor Emeritus of Languages and Literature, received the 2011 Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters at the 62nd National Book Awards ceremony in Manhattan. Presenting the award was poet Ann Lauterbach, David and Ruth Schwab Professor of Languages and Literature and Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts faculty.
Senior Soccer Player Scores Academic Honors Stergios Mentesidis ’12 became Bard’s firstever national Academic All-American, earning Third Team honors from the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) and Capital One. Mentesidis recorded a 3.94 GPA with a double major in economics and mathematics, and started 66 games for Bard over the last four seasons, including the last 57 games in a row. A native of Greece, Mentesidis built a reputation on the soccer field of being strong, decisive, and tough, playing most of his career at defender, with some time played at midfield. Student athletes are nominated by CoSIDA members, who then vote to create the All-District teams, which are built geographically in NCAA Divisions I, II, and III, and in a small-college division. Those who obtain First Team All-District status, Stergios Mentesidis ’12 like Mentesidis, move on to the national photo Stockton Photo Inc. Academic All-America ballot; these national awards (First Team, Second Team, and Third Team for each sport category) were voted upon by Academic All-America Committee members and the current CoSIDA Board of Directors. Among the Division III winners, only three were students at schools from the Liberty League, in which Bard plays. Also, 30 of the College’s student athletes were named to the Liberty League’s Fall All-Academic Teams, including 11 from the men’s soccer team, six each in men’s and women’s cross country, five in women’s soccer, and two in women’s volleyball.
Prestigious Prizes Go to Four Seniors Four Bard seniors have been awarded significant postgraduate scholarships and fellowships, including a Watson Fellowship and Davis Projects for Peace prize. Daniela Anderson ’12 has won the Watson Fellowship for her proposal to trace leprosy. She will travel to Mozambique, Madagascar, India, Thailand, and Brazil to follow the path of leprosy from East Africa to South Asia and South America. She also will volunteer in leprosy clinics and leprosy relief agencies to learn how local histories and current interpretations of leprosy interact with clinical treatment of the disease. She wants to experience what it means to provide clinical care for patients in these different parts of the world and learn what steps must be taken to eradicate the disease in each place. Justin Fernando ’12 was awarded a DAAD graduate scholarship, a competitive grant from the German Academic Exchange Service to support graduate work in political studies at a German university. Willem Molesworth ’12 received the $10,000 Davis Projects for Peace prize to develop a liberal arts initiative in China. He will work with faculty at Qingdao University to develop a curriculum and pedagogy for a liberal arts seminar, which will be offered this summer to 10 to 15 Qingdao University students. The seminar will be preceded by a series of weekly conferences and talks that address the Chinese educational system’s challenges and explore solutions to them. The goal is for those who attend the conferences and seminar to continue the work beyond the summer, deepening and extending the influence of the liberal arts in China. Lucy Schmid ’12 has earned a New York University Abu Dhabi (NYUAD) Global Academic Fellowship in Writing and will spend next year at New York University’s campus in Abu Dhabi, providing academic support for students and faculty, serving on the campus/student life staff, and pursuing her own research/writing projects.
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Campus Abuzz with Construction
High school debaters Hannah Frischberg, BHSEC Manhattan (left), and Rheabecca Guillaume-Roussel, BHSEC Newark. photo Karl Rabe
Meeting of the Minds: Debates at Bard Enthusiatic young people came to the Annandale campus March 9 to argue two topics—lowering the voting age in the United States, and the pros and cons of Facebook—as, for the first time, the Bard Debate Union held a day of discourse for teams from the three Bard High School Early Colleges (BHSEC), and the College’s middle- and high school neighbors from Red Hook and Rhinebeck. The first annual Middle and High School Debate Tournament at Bard College, also sponsored by the Center for Civic Engagement, featured two rounds of debate to “jump-start” new programs at the middle and high schools, according to Ruth Zisman, faculty adviser for the Bard Debate Union. The tournament was a success, with almost 50 students in attendance (24 middle school students and 24 high school students). Each debate was judged and critiqued by members of the Bard Debate Union. “We were thrilled to have had this opportunity to bring so many young debaters to Bard and to give our students the opportunity to work together with them as educators and mentors,” Zisman says. “It is absolutely our hope that this tournament will become an annual event and grow in size and scope each year.” The Bard team helped to found the debate program in the Red Hook middle school last year through a Trustee Leader Scholar project; this academic year the Bard squad extended its aid to the Red Hook High School team. Debate alumus Radley Glasser ’11 is helping Rhinebeck High School’s fledgling debate program.
President Leon Botstein spoke about Bard’s commitment to athletics and wellness, as well as the balance between athletics and academics, as the College broke ground on a $2.1 million renovation and expansion of the Stevenson Gymnasium. College Board of Trustees Chair Charles P. Stevenson Jr. and anonymous donors made the project possible. The renovation of the property across Route 9G from Bard, the Alumni/ae Center and Two Boots Bard, is moving at great speed. The center will offer alumni/ae a place to host small functions, gather informally, set up readings and exhibitions, and interact with faculty and students. The Office of Development and Alumni/ae Affairs will also be housed in the new space. Geothermal technologies, sustainable materials, and energy-efficient lighting plans are being incorporated into the project. One-quarter of the 8,500-square-foot building will become the Bard branch of Two Boots, a popular New York City pizza restaurant started by Phil Hartman, who attended Bard as a visiting student in 1976 and is the father of two recent graduates. Two Boots Bard is slated to open by Commencement. Construction has begun on the Bitó Conservatory Building, the result of a $9.2 million gift from László Z. Bitó ’60. A groundbreaking ceremony took place in October and the project is expected to be complete by early 2013. The freestanding 16,500-square-foot building will connect to the Edith C. Blum Institute. The new building will include 15 teaching studios and a flexible 145-seat performance hall that can be configured in a variety of ways and will possess livestreaming capability and one-touch audio and video recording.
The Alumni/ae Center. photo Ken Treadway
Library’s Benefactors Honored
John Barnes ’14 and Helene Tieger ’85 flank portrait of Charles Flint Kellogg ’31. photo Sasha Boak-Kelly
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The College honored the late Charles Flint Kellogg, a member of the St. Stephen’s class of 1931 and Bard College trustee from 1975 to 1980, and his wife, the late Mary Margaret Cashell Kellogg, a member of Bard College at Simon’s Rock Board of Overseers from 1980 to 1997, by hanging their portraits in the College’s Kellogg Library. That library, which stands with the Hoffman Library and Charles P. Stevenson Jr. Library, had been built by the Kelloggs to memorialize their parents. The portrait hanging was accompanied by a small exhibition of articles and personal effects belonging to Mr. Kellogg (who was known as Flint) to illustrate the time he spent at Bard (then St. Stephen’s) from 1927 to 1931. Flint and Mary Margaret’s great nephew, John Barnes ’14, hung the portraits during the ceremony. The portrait of Flint came to Bard years ago, when his wife went into a nursing home. Mary Margaret’s portrait was given to President Leon Botstein by Jane Cashell—Flint’s niece and John’s mother— at Mary Margaret’s memorial service at Simon’s Rock in late August. Bard archivist Helene Tieger ’85 was instrumental in organizing the library ceremony.
Biophysicist Wins Humboldt Research Award George D. Rose ’63, a biophysicist at Johns Hopkins University, has won the prestigious Alexander von Humboldt Foundation’s Humboldt Research Award; he will visit Munich frequently during the year to work with German researchers. The foundation, based in Germany, each year recognizes up to 100 researchers outside Germany who make significant and fundamental discoveries in their disciplines. Scholars in Germany nominate candidates for the 60,000-euro award. Humboldt Award winners are invited to cultivate international scientific collaboration by cooperating on a long-term project with colleagues at a research institution in Germany. Rose will be the Honorary Hans Fischer Senior Fellow at the Technical University of Munich’s Institute for Advanced Study and will work with Professor Thomas Kiefhaber, a world-class investigator in protein folding. Protein folding is perhaps the simplest, yet deepest, unsolved problem in biophysical chemistry, according to Rose, who is the Krieger-Eisenhower Professor in the Thomas C. Jenkins Department of Biophysics in the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences at Johns Hopkins University. He explains that with proteins, function follows form. A protein is a linear sequence of amino acids, arranged like different colored beads on a string. Under normal physiological conditions, this string spontaneously folds up into a unique, three-dimensional structure. With no additional energy required to drive this process, an organized structure emerges from a disorganized one. The structure of more than 70,000 proteins has been determined experimentally, and patterns extracted from this repository have been used successfully to predict the folds of new proteins. Successful prediction of the folds based on physical principles instead of known patterns has yet to be achieved, however; this is the research question that Rose and Kiefhaber will take up as they design experiments to test hypotheses that Rose has proposed. “Aging biochemists sometimes develop an obsessive interest in evolution,” says Rose, who majored in mathematics at Bard and earned both a master’s
George D. Rose ’63. photo Dennis Brack
degree in mathematics and computer sciences and a Ph.D. in biochemistry and biophysics from Oregon State University. “Following this trend, my recent interests have tended toward protein evolution. The usual view in the field is that novel protein structures emerge in an open-ended way over the course of evolutionary time. In contrast, my own work has led to the maverick conclusion that the number of fundamentally distinct protein scaffolds is highly limited. Specifically, the repertoire of conceivable scaffolds was predetermined by the chemistry of the protein backbone in water, before the first one was ever expressed in a living species. You might characterize them as Platonic forms at a molecular level. With Professor Kiefhaber, I will be developing experimental tests of these concepts. It has now been more than half a century since I studied Plato’s Dialogues in the Common Course (precursor to First-Year Seminar) at Bard. Who can foretell where a formative idea will lead us?”
Mapping High School Early College’s Successes
Bard a Leader in Fulbright Recipients
Bard College has received a three-year, $450,000 grant from the Booth Ferris Foundation to study the impact of the Bard High School Early College (BHSEC) program on increases in college completion rates. Vanessa Anderson, BHSEC’s newly appointed director of research and evaluation, will coordinate and conduct the studies required by the grant. She will oversee the tracking of students from admission through completion of their college work and develop ways to measure their success. The National Center for Restructuring Education, Schools, and Teaching (NCREST), which is affiliated with Teachers College at Columbia University, will document the overall BHSEC model and its practices, particularly those that can be reproduced and those that encourage participation by students who enter with lower academic achievement. “We will be looking at how our students do compared with similarly situated students who did not have the opportunity to go to BHSEC, as well as looking at our own best practices and what makes BHSEC distinct and successful,” says Martha Olson, Bard College dean of education initiatives and Bard High School Early College dean of administration. BHSEC has retained Metis Associates, an analytic research firm founded by Richard Pargament ’65, to conduct the comparison. The research is to focus on sustainable practices that can be used nationally to help secondary school students succeed in rigorous academic programs, regardless of their middle school preparation. The grant includes funding for a national conference to further the discussion on early colleges and disseminate the research findings.
The U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, the Fulbright Program’s sponsor, named Bard College as one of the Fulbright Scholarship’s “top producers” among undergraduate institutions for 2011. Bard ranked in the top 25 among more than 100 colleges and universities receiving Fulbright awards. High-ranking institutions in all classifications were highlighted in the fall digital edition of the Chronicle of Higher Education. The College had 13 alumni/ae and students apply, and five became Fulbright recipients, including Ting Ting Cheng ’02, who served as a judicial clerk at the Constitutional Court of South Africa and received the Fulbright Amy Biehl Award, given to the highest-ranking applicant to South Africa. The grant honors the memory of Biehl, a 1993 Fulbright Fellow to South Africa who was killed while working to help promote multiracial democracy in the country. Other Bard winners were Mariana Giusti ’07, to study indigenous movements and politics in Peru and Bolivia; Molly Anders ’09, to research democracy and journalism in Jordan and other Middle Eastern countries; Gergely Lodinsky ’09, to study Austrian politics at the University of Vienna; and Jonathan Peyster ’09, to compare the economic stimulus plans of China and the United States at Qingdao University. All five are alumni/ae of Bard College’s Globalization and International Affairs Program. In correspondence with Bard President Leon Botstein, the Fulbright board emphasized the Fulbright Program’s contributions to leadership development across academia, government, commerce, health, science, and the arts, and to the promotion of peace and stability in the world.
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Bard at the Whitney Biennial This year, Bard has a hefty presence at the Whitney Biennial—the Whitney Museum’s prestigious survey of contemporary American art on view through May 27. Bardians represented in the 2012 Biennial include Moyra Davey, ICP– Bard faculty; Ed Halter, visiting assistant professor of film and electronic arts (cocurator of this Biennial’s film and video program); K8 Hardy MFA ’09; Sam Lewitt, MFA photography faculty; Lucy Raven MFA ’09; and Kelly Reichardt, Bard artist in residence. Landing work in the Whitney Biennial is a coup for any artist. For Bard alumna Laida Lertxundi ’03, an emerging filmmaker, it is a milestone. Four of her most recent films, A Lax Riddle Unit (2011), Cry When It Happens (2010), My Tears Are Dry (2009), and Footnotes to a House of Love (2007), were selected for inclusion in this year’s exhibition. The films, each less than 15 minutes long, play with the idea of cinematic plot and linger on quotidian moments. Three of the films had premiered at the New York Film Festival’s “Views from the AvantGarde,” where the Biennial’s curators first took notice of her work. Of the Biennial honor, Lertxundi says, “It was a surprise because it is not something you can apply to. They choose you.” Lertxundi’s films situate themselves in the interior (motels, beds, walls) and exterior (deserts, mountains, oceans) landscapes of southern California. In Cry When It Happens, Los Angeles City Hall is reflected onto a window of the Paradise Motel. “It’s important to me that my films share the same spaces as the big Hollywood films, which have distorted the reality of Los Angeles’s landscape. Of course, it’s a challenge because the police will chase out independent filmmakers who can’t cordon off whole boulevards to shoot.” Lertxundi stages people, props, and sound events to create fictions. She shoots films using nonactors, usually friends or other people she knows. “For many independent filmmakers, the process is like a photographer’s: they go out alone and shoot. I work with a setup. It’s always a collaboration—improvised and intimate.” Born and raised in the Basque country in northern Spain, Lertxundi grew up studying music and art. Not until she arrived at Bard, however, did she discover film as a medium. Lertxundi attributes her focus on film to seeing influential films by artists such as Andy Warhol, Maya Deren, and Jean-Luc Godard during the Language and Thinking Program: “I became interested in experimental film in the context of art, like music and painting, instead of just a medium for storytelling. I saw that what is powerful in film is its duration—the feeling that it is not an object but an experience.” She majored in film and electronic arts and studied with Peter Hutton and Peggy Ahwesh, who was her Senior Project adviser. As an undergraduate, Lertxundi
Laida Lertxundi ’03. photo Noah Doely
shot exclusively in black and white. “Peter took us out on boats on the Hudson River. I was just learning how to shoot, learning how to capture reality, how light would write on the film.” More focused on shooting in quantity than on editing or polishing pieces, she recognizes the seeds of her current work in this earliest footage and thinks of her education at Bard as life changing. “Bard is the only place I feel nostalgia for. It was a really inspiring and productive place for me.” Lertxundi went on to receive her M.F.A. at the California Institute of the Arts, where she began to shoot in color as a response to California’s vibrant light. Working closely with filmmakers Thom Andersen, who studies how Hollywood has warped the image of Los Angeles, and James Benning, who influenced Lertxundi’s way of experiencing landscape, she began producing finished films. Her films are also rooted in the critical theory and philosophy texts she continues to read, including works in French by feminist writers such as Julia Kristeva and Luce Irigaray. As an active film curator in Spain, Lertxundi recently curated a retrospective of Ahwesh’s work at Bilbao Guggenheim. She also writes about film in Spanish. Her most recent article, “Los Angeles sin Hollywood,” about Andersen’s film Get Out of the Car, was published in Bostezo. She is also teaching at the University of California, San Diego, and has solo shows and premieres coming up in San Francisco, Chicago, Los Angeles, and Belgium. Lertxundi is currently at work on a longer film. “I like the rhythm of making about one film per year. I’m not rigid about it and I’m not about being a factory. I don’t feel the pressure to be prolific, but I want to make things that are profoundly considered.”
Author of “Brilliant, Unruly” Novel Wins Bard Fiction Prize Benjamin Hale, whose debut novel, The Evolution of Bruno Littlemore, is written in the voice of an eloquent chimpanzee, has won the 2012 Bard Fiction Prize. His book is “a brilliant, unruly brute of a book,” according to the Washington Post; “an absolute pleasure,” in the opinion of the New York Times Book Review; and “a brave and visionary work of genius,” the San Francisco Chronicle wrote. The annual prize, established in 2001 by the College to encourage and support promising young fiction writers, consists of a $30,000 cash award and a semester-long appointment as writer in residence. Hale is spending the spring semester at Bard, where he continues his writing, meets informally with students, and gives public readings. “Benjamin Hale is a rare young writer, whose work is not only precocious but takes an evolutionary leap,” wrote the Bard Fiction Prize committee. “Grounded in classical learning and the wisdom of literary predecessors, his debut novel swings valiantly through the trees with diction and vigor that are completely his own. The Evolution of Bruno Littlemore dares to speak in the voice of a chimpanzee: an articulate and morally engaged one, at that. This beast becomes the mouthpiece for literary humanism, and embodies as well the fierce problematic of the marginal— speaking up for life’s outsiders. Yet the heart that beats beneath Bruno’s savage breast is the novel’s most fiercely recognizable achievement. The central, scandalous love story stands in for all passions that dare not speak their name. No human could tell it so truthfully.”
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In-Depth Look at Filmmaker’s Work The Bard community had the opportunity to see French filmmaker Robert Bresson’s body of work, of singular importance to the history of cinema, when the Film and Electronic Arts Program at Bard College offered the complete retrospective, “Robert Bresson and His Legacy.” All of his films were screened on campus using rare or archival 35mm prints. The most extensive program ever held in the Jim Ottaway Jr. Film Center, the review this past winter featured several films that had not been screened anywhere since the 1990s. Initially a painter, Bresson (1901–99) completed 13 features between 1943 and 1983, in the midst of some of the most tumultuous events of the 20th century. Refusing to make concessions to commercial cinema, Bresson pursued a largely independent course. In addition to Bard, a select group of major venues—including the National Gallery of Art, George Eastman House, Toronto International Film Festival Cinematheque, and Harvard Film Archive—presented a collection of Bresson’s films to coincide with the publication of a new anthology, Robert Bresson (Revised) (Indiana University Press, 2012). Bard is the only organization that expanded the program with additional films, related events, and an associated course, Robert Bresson and His Legacy. Bresson’s work was shown at Bard in part through generous support from the Hannah Arendt Center for Politics and Humanities, French Studies Program, French Embassy, and French American Cultural Exchange.
Robert Bresson’s Pickpocket, 1959. photo ©New Yorker Films/Photofest
CCS Bard, at 20, Receives Mapplethorpe Foundation Gift In support of its 20th anniversary fund-raising campaign, Next Decade, Bard’s Center for Curatorial Studies (CCS Bard) has received a $500,000 gift from the Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation and named one of the Hessel Museum’s galleries the Robert Mapplethorpe Gallery. CCS Bard is also celebrating its 20th anniversary with several exhibitions. Matters of Fact revisits key encounters in the institutional history of CCS Bard between collector and artist, curator and exhibition, art and art history. The exhibition is on view through May 27. From April 29 through May 27, Spring Exhibitions and Projects Group 2 feature work from leading contemporary artists curated by CCS Bard graduate students. From June 22 to 23, CCS Bard will hold a two-day curatorial conference. Also upcoming are public openings of Anti-Establishment, at CCS Bard Galleries, and Liam Gillick: 190A–199B, at the Hessel Museum. As part of Anti-Establishment, performances will be held in Theater Two of the Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts. Both exhibitions are on view through December 21.
CCS Honors Director of Amsterdam Museum The Center for Curatorial Studies presented Ann Goldstein, general artistic director of the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, with the Audrey Irmas Award for Curatorial Excellence at a gala celebration and dinner on April 4 in New York City. The 15th recipient of the CCS Bard Award for Curatorial Excellence, Goldstein is the first to receive the prize under the name of CCS Board of Governors member Irmas, who bestowed the endowment for the award. Irmas is an active member of the Los Angeles arts and philanthropic community. Noted for her expertise in the fields of Ann Goldstein photo Rineke Dijkstra minimal and conceptual art of the 1960s and 1970s, as well as current practices, Goldstein has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to individual artists as well as curatorial projects presenting significant group exhibitions. Before assuming her post at the Stedelijk Museum in 2010, Goldstein worked for 26 years at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (MOCA), holding the position of senior curator, among other roles.
Philip Glass Reflects on Composing
JoAnne Akalaitis and Philip Glass. photo Karl Rabe
Celebrated composer Philip Glass, renowned for theater, opera, and film scores such as his landmark opera Einstein on the Beach (1976) and iconic film Koyaanisqatsi (1982), packed Theater Two, where he spoke about his craft with Kyle Gann, associate professor of music. Glass compared writing music for theater with other forms of composition: “Theater forces the composer to confront the unexpected. It forces a desperate act of invention, a leap that we usually can’t make as radically as we’d like to.” He also discussed his compositions for playwright Samuel Beckett when he and JoAnne Akalaitis worked in Paris in the 1960s. Glass and Akalaitis, Wallace Benjamin Flint and L. May Hawver Flint Professor of Drama, have been artistic collaborators for more than 40 years (15 of those years as husband and wife). Questions from students at the February event ranged from asking Glass which three pieces he would choose to represent the arc of his career to a query about his fervor for music. “I know where my passion lies, but I didn’t know where my passion would take me,” he said. The evening was sponsored by the Theater Program. on and off campus 33
COMMENCEMENT AND ALUMNI/AE WEEKEND May 25–27, 2012 Reunion classes celebrating are
1952, 1962/63, 1972, 1982, 1987, 1992, 1997, 2002, and 2007 Join this year’s honorees on Friday night at the annual President’s Awards Ceremony and Dinner, and stay for the whole weekend to celebrate being a Bardian with family and friends. Highlights include:
Annandale Roadhouse | Friday night only, 9 p.m. – 1 a.m. Music, movies, dancing, outdoor bar, café (kids welcome). Bertelsmann Campus Center.
American Symphony Orchestra, with student performers and composers, conducted by Leon Botstein | Friday, 9:30 p.m. Sosnoff Theater, Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts. Free; no reservations required.
Adolfas Mekas Memorial Celebration | Saturday, 11 a.m. Celebrate the life of groundbreaking filmmaker and teacher Aldolfas Mekas. Jim Ottaway Jr. Film Center, Milton and Sally Avery Arts Center.
Reunion and BBQ Dinners at Blithewood | Saturday, 6:30–8:30 p.m. Join classmates and friends at the reunion receptions and dinners. Enjoy tasty barbecue or bring a picnic to watch the fireworks over the Hudson River and dance the night away under the big tent.
BardCorps Airstream Trailer | All weekend Be part of BardCorps, the Bard–St.Stephen’s Alumni/ae Association Oral History Project. Find the Airstream parked at the north entrance of the Bertelsmann Campus Center.
Details at annandaleonline.org/commencement 34 class notes
photo Scott Barrow
Class Notes Editor’s note: More extensive versions of many of these notes, and additional notes, are posted on AnnandaleOnline.org. Class Notes of any length, with accompanying photos, may be posted there. For “Reunion” details, click on the tab on our website, AnnandaleOnline.org, or contact the Office of Alumni/ae Affairs at firstname.lastname@example.org or 800-BARDCOL.
’11 Gregory Backus is in the Ph.D. program in biomathematics at North Carolina State University. | Julie Bennett is enjoying the University of Texas, Austin, where she is in the Ph.D. program for mathematics. | Patrick Bova is a candidate in the Ph.D. program in philosophy at the New School for Social Research, New York. | Leah Gastler is thrilled to be studying at The Juilliard School for her master’s degree in viola performance. | Zoe Johnson-Ulrich is a horse wrangler at Snow Mountain Ranch in Granby, Colorado. | Anna Katsman, a candidate in the Ph.D. program in philosophy at the New School for Social Research, New York, is also exploring New York City. | Shawn Moore is following his passion and working on his master’s degree in music for violin performance at Yale School of Music. | Olivia Nathanson is studying for her D.V.M. degree at University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine. | Claire Ross is appreciating the struc-
ture of the buildings of New York City while working on her master’s degree in architecture at City College of New York. | Rubi Rose Siblo-Landsman’s photography exhibition, Ten Again: Portraits of Sadie Bloch (daughter of Gale Wolfe ’90), was presented by the Tierney Foundation in Woods Studio at Bard College in March. In 2011 Rubi Rose also received the Tierney Family Foundation Prize, which supports emerging artists in the field of photography and enables them to pursue a photographic project after graduation. | Adina Stoica spends her time researching computer vision and graphics as a candidate in the computer science Ph.D. program at Washington University, St. Louis. | Jackie Stone is at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in the Ph.D. program in mathematics. | Maksim Tsikhanovich is working on his Ph.D. in machine learning at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. | Zhexiu Tu is at Cornell University for the Ph.D. program in mathematics. | Michael Walker launched GetchaBooks, a discount textbooks company that was named one of the coolest college start-ups in 2011. | Latiqua Williams is enrolled in Bard’s Master of Arts in Teaching Program.
’10 John Brennan is in his first year of the graduate program in philosophy at the New School for Social Research. He also works as a youth coach for Fastnyc, New York, an organization that brings
physical training, nutritional awareness, and academic focus to underprivileged children across the five boroughs. | Erik Erikson is working on his master’s degree at Columbia University School of Journalism, New York. | Elio Fox won the 2011 World Series of Poker Europe last fall in Cannes, France. | Hannah Quay-de la Vallee is working on her Ph.D. in computer science at Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island. | Reginald Raye left his job at MIT Sloan, gathered together a group of web developers, suppliers, artists, bankers, and lawyers, and cofounded !nstant, a pop culture and current events T-shirt company.
’09 Rebecca Goldberg recently moved to New York City to pursue a job counseling people living with HIV. | Edward “Ted” Hall conducts behavioral economic research at Columbia University’s Center for Research on Environmental Decisions, New York. He also has lectured widely and been actively involved in the Occupy Wall Street movement. | Zachary Kussin graduated from the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism with an M.A. degree in arts and culture reporting in December. His freelance work has appeared in the New York Times, Newsweek, and on the website of PBS. | Sara Lynch-Thomason created a music history project called Blair Pathways, a musical narrative of the southern West Virginia mine wars (1897–1921). | Ne¸se S¸ enol, a Ph.D. candidate and member of the critical writing faculty at the University of Pennsylvania, recently published an article about the psychedelic renaissance in the Web magazine Reality Sandwich. | Amanda Warman has been working as a producer on a short film, Persephone, which is being shot in the Hudson Valley and stars Academy Award–winning actress Melissa Leo. | Daniel Whitener liked Bard so much he came back for more; he plans to graduate from the Conservatory’s Graduate Conducting Program this spring.
’08 Oliver Becker is putting his history degree to good use working as a story producer on a variety of documentary series, as well as on TV shows such as Hell’s Kitchen on the Fox Network. | Manuel Borras (BPI) is currently working as a housing advocate for Brownsville Partnership in Brooklyn. He is also a playwright for the Working Theater and had his story “Parole and the Playwright” in Threadnews.org. He was just named to the Public Theater’s 2013 Emerging Writers Group, which An image from Ten Again: Portraits of Sadie Bloch by Rubi Rose Siblo-Landsman ’11
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targets playwrights at the earliest stages of their careers. | Adriane Raff Corwin is currently living in Honolulu and pursuing a Ph.D. in political science at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. She is managing editor of the Manoa Journal of Fried and HalfFried Ideas. | Sarah Elger was a finalist in the Disney ImagiNations design competition. She is halfway through a master’s degree in architecture at the University of Pennsylvania and hopes to go back to Disney this summer. | Bernard Gann and Tyler Dusenbury are in Liturgy, a black metal band named No. 1 in its genre in Spin magazine’s “Best of 2011” issue. | Patricia Pforte is interning at the Brooklyn Historical Society, New York, while she completes her master’s degree in museum studies this spring. | Rachel Schragis is a New York–based artist, educator, and activist who created How Do You Illustrate Corruption? a flow-chart visualization of the declaration of the Occupy Wall Street movement.
’07 5th Reunion: May 25–27, 2012 Please join your classmates Kate Hardy, Meghan Hunt, Mia McCully, Eduardo Mills, Ryan Selzer, Joanna Tanger, Stephen Tremaine, Noah Weston, and others, back on campus in May. Gaia Filicori and Gordon Bell ’08 were on hand, hooting and hollering, at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival, supporting the world premiere of their film, Beasts of the Southern Wild, which won the grand jury prize for best U.S. dramatic feature. Filicori was the production coordinator and assistant casting director, and Bell was the script supervisor on this popular film, which features pyrotechnics, exotic animals, and small children in the bayous of southern Louisiana. | Jivan Lee (BCEP ’07) lives in Taos, New Mexico, where he pursues two interrelated careers: one as a fine artist and one as a self-employed environmental/ sustainability consultant. | Tanner Vea and Matthew Kelly were married on July 3, 2011.
’06 Raphael Bob-Waksberg has been tapped to write a new NBC comedy, starring How I Met Your Mother actor Kal Penn, to be set at the United Nations. | Olivia Carrow works at the Hudson, New York, office of Etsy.com and lives at a newly formed organic CSA community. She is also enrolled in foundation studies at the Alkion Center in Ghent, New York, in preparation for teaching at a Waldorf school, and has formed a new three-piece folk/string ensemble called Pocatello. | Christophe Chung graduated from MIT with a master’s degree in urban planning in 2011 and now lives in Washington, D.C., where he works as a water
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Left to right: Jennifer Robinson, Eben Kaplan ’03, Lisa Savin ’03, Mollie Meikle ’03, Bianca D’Allesandro ’03, Abby Pike, Caroline Muglia ’04, Alex Bernal, Rachel Gardner, Pia Carusone ’03, Sarah Mosbacher ’04 photo Marybeth Joy
supply and sanitation consultant for the World Bank, with a focus on the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. | Peter Haffner is enrolled in UCLA’s world arts and cultures M.A./Ph.D. program in culture and performance, with a focus on Haitian art. | Andy Hardman is in the midst of an accelerated postbaccalaureate nursing program in Duluth, Minnesota, and is the recipient of the HRSA (Health Resources and Services Administration) scholarship. | Sarah Kat Keezing and Ryan Gay ’02 married on June 25, 2011, in Brownfield, Maine. The couple were thrilled to have a pile of beloved Bardians present. They were even more thrilled to welcome the arrival of baby Hudson Ryan Gay on January 26, 2012. | Ezra Parzybok works with the Care Center, a youth program in Holyoke, Massachusetts, which was presented with a National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award at the White House in the fall for its success as an alternative GED program for teen mothers. | Lauren Pessin has been teaching kindergarten students with autism spectrum disorders in the Bronx for five years. | Chelsea Streifeneder had her Red Hook, New York, business, Body Be Well, named best Pilates studio in the Hudson Valley for 2011. | Matt Wing was named the deputy communications director for New York City for the governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo.
’05 Jessica Haskins recently completed an M.F.A. in design and technology at Parsons The New School for Design, and is working as a game designer at Muse Games in New York City. | Renee Pena recently celebrated her company’s second birthday. Creative Sitters, LLC, is the compilation of Renee’s arts-education experience at Bard and the power of teaching in an out-of-the-box environment.
’04 Ronan S. Farrow has received a Rhodes Scholarship, the oldest and most celebrated international fellowship in the world. He plans to pursue a doctorate at Oxford University in international development. Currently special adviser to the U.S. secretary of state for global youth issues, he also was special adviser for humanitarian and NGO affairs. | Liz McGovern and Ian McBee welcomed their second child in the fall of 2011. Ian teaches chemistry at Triton Regional High School in Byfield, Massachusetts, and Liz works as an office coordinator at Suffolk University in Boston. | Jonathan Reingold launched his own law firm, Reingold Law, in Seattle, Washington, with a focus on immigration law. | Rainey Reitman is serving as activism director of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a nonprofit civil liberties law firm and advocacy center based in San Francisco. She also has been a vocal advocate for WikiLeaks whistleblower PFC Bradley Manning.
’03 Babacar Cisse completed his M.D./Ph.D. at Columbia University, and he is now at the New York–Presbyterian Weill/Cornell Medical Center for his neurosurgery residency. | Bianca D’Allesandro married Abby Pike at Oz Farm in Mendocino County, California, in October 2011. Currently dean at Oakland School for the Arts, Bianca will complete her doctorate in education at Mills College, Oakland, this spring. | Rudd Davis has been named to the newly created position of president of USA Today’s Travel Media Group. | Laida Lertxundi had her films selected for the 2012 Biennial at the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (see p. 32). | Nathan Rutenbeck plans to graduate from Yale Divinity School and Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies this spring, after which he hopes to enter doctoral studies in forest ecology and management.
’02 10th Reunion: May 25–27, 2012 Please join your classmates Imran Ahmed, Tate DeCaro, Charlotte Gibbs, Toni Fortini Josey, Ian McBee, Skye McNeill, Tamara Plummer, Sarah Shapiro, Ryan Wheeler, and others, back on campus in May. Emily Benedetto relocated from Brooklyn to Boston, where she is program manager of the Brigham and Women’s Hospital Center for Depression. | Zoltán Feher recently stepped down as president of the Young Diplomats Club in Budapest, Hungary. He is continuing his diplomatic career as deputy chief of mission at the Hungarian Embassy in Ankara, Turkey. | Alison (Hammer) Woodhead received an M.B.A. from UCLA’s Anderson School of Management in May 2010. She is happily married, with two dogs and a five-foot iguana named Sophie.
’01 Nick Corrao had his short documentary film, Come on Down and Pick Me Up, shown at the 2011 Woodstock Film Festival. Also, on November 11, 2011, Nick married Amanda Shaw ’03 at the bride’s childhood home in Gainesville, Florida. Amanda, who is in her last semester of a master’s degree in landscape architecture at the University of Florida, joins her husband in Tuscaloosa, where he teaches film production at the University of Alabama.
’00 Julia Christensen participated in a group show, It’s the Political Economy, Stupid, at the Austrian Cultural Forum in New York. Julia is currently assistant professor of integrated media in the studio art department at Oberlin College, Ohio. | After receiving a Ph.D. in comparative literature from CUNY, Bhakti Shringarpure founded an online magazine called Warscapes, which publishes literature and art from contemporary conflicts. | Corina Tanasa received an M.A. in electrical engineering from MIT, then worked on her Ph.D. in semiconductors at Stanford University before earning her law degree. She now works as a patent lawyer in Washington, D.C.
’98 Yugon Kim has been working for Renzo Piano Building Workshop for the last five years and is currently organizing an on-site tour of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston. | Eugene Kublanovsky was recently promoted to partner at Fensterstock & Partners, a complex commercial litigation company located in New York City.
Books by Bardians Switching Codes: Thinking Through Digital Technology in the Humanities and the Arts edited by Thomas Bartscherer, assistant professor of humanities and director, Language and Thinking Program; and Roderick Coover university of chicago press In this volume of essays, dialogue, short fiction, and even game design, leading American and European minds come together to explore how digital information and new technologies transform the way we think and act. A rich collection of contributions promotes thoughtful and indispensable discourse on the impact of the digital era.
Ghosts! by Martine Bellen ’78 spuyten duyvil press Bellen’s newest collection of poetry pays homage to the great lyric poet H. D., weaving myth, history, and visceral experience into exquisitely raw and beautifully melancholic poems. The book’s antiheroine rises and descends through her sensual, ecstatic, and often excruciating existence, as fathers and lovers turn into ghosts all around her.
Democracy Is Not a Spectator Sport: The Ultimate Volunteer Handbook by Arthur Blaustein ’57 with Helen Matatov skyhorse publishing Blaustein lays bare the precarious state of America’s political climate and emphasizes the vital role that volunteerism, civic engagement, community service, and citizen participation have in saving this nation’s democracy, while offering readers opportunities to get involved.
Bonjour, Happiness! by Jamie Cat Callan ’75 citadel press The secrets of French joie de vivre are tenderly revealed in this heartfelt ode to French women. Callan has written a humorous handbook for American women on how to embrace the simple pleasures of thrift, good food, flirtation, aging gracefully, and ordinary happiness à la française.
A Spider on the Stairs by Cassandra Chan ’78 minotaur books Fourth in a series of novels featuring best friends Phillip Bethancourt and Scotland Yard detective Jack Gibbons, this contemporary mystery heats up when a body found on Christmas turns the citizens of a quiet Yorkshire town into suspects.
The Targums: A Critical Introduction by Paul V. M. Flesher and Bruce Chilton ’71, Bernard Iddings Bell Professor of Religion baylor university press The Targums—ancient translations of the Hebrew Bible into Aramaic— are presented with scholarly nuance and critical insight in this comprehensive work that includes Targum manuscripts discovered in this century as well as Targums only recently translated into English. Flesher and Chilton trace the development and history of the Targums; explore their relationship to the Hebrew Bible, Christianity, and Judaism; and illuminate the theologies and methods of interpretation.
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’97 15th Reunion: May 25–27, 2012 Please join your classmates Josh Bell, Todd Grace, Lisa Jarvis, Julia (Wolk) Munemo, Brandon Weber, and others, back on campus in May. Joshua Boettiger is studying to be a rabbi while working with a small congregation in southern Westchester County and Riverdale, New York. | John Leo performed voyeuristic vaudeville bits and surrealist non sequiturs in Handshake Uppercut: A Victorian Clown Throwdown. He is also a pediatric clown doctor with the Big Apple Circus Clown Care Unit in New York City. | Nina Siulc, an assistant professor of legal studies at UMass–Amherst since 2008, recently accepted a joint position in anthropology and criminal justice at Rutgers–New Brunswick, in New Jersey. Her first book, about the impact of deportation on Dominican families, comes out next spring. | Seth Travins plays the upright bass in the Wiyos, a band that tours stateside and internationally. He also founded Hawthorne Valley Farms’ sauerkraut cellar department, where he makes and sells 50,000 pounds of sauerkraut annually.
’96 Michael Deibert will have his second book, Democratic Republic of Congo: Between Hope and Despair, published this year. After more than a decade covering conflicts and upheaval around the globe in his capacity as a journalist, Michael is a visiting fellow at the Centre for Peace and Reconciliation Studies at Coventry University in the U.K. | Joshua Ledwell recently graduated from Bentley University, Waltham, Massachusetts, with an M.A. in human factors in information design. | Talya Rubin is living in Sydney, Australia, where she has been touring an original solo show, Of the Causes of Wonderful Things. She is studying for an M.F.A. in creative writing through University of British Columbia’s Optional Residency Program. | Marta Topferova was invited to sing at the inauguration of Forum 2000 in Prague, an annual conference founded by the late Czech president, Vaclav Havel. She also recently released her sixth CD, The Other Shore.
Left to right: Peter Jaros ’08, Leah Potyondy ’06, Officiant Anna Leue ’06, Alex Velasquez ’06, Sarah Kat Keezing ’06, Brad Dana ’05, Ryan Gay ’02, Galen Fitzpatrick ’04, Gina Fitzpatrick, Erin Daly ’04, and Jeff Goodhind photo Courtesy of Sarah Keezing
(Damiani) and The Rolling Stones 1972 by Jim Marshall (Chronicle Books). | Noah MulletteGillman has published five fantasy books in the last 18 months. One of his short stories will be featured in the British horror anthology 100 Horrors.
’94 Mark Feinsod has been making comedic web videos for the Peoples Improv Theater (PIT) as part of its Top Secret Projector Room team. The first episode of his new comedy Web series, called “Himalayan Cats with AK-47s and Eating Disorders,” can be seen on YouTube. | Andrew Nicholson won the American Academy of Religion’s 2011 Award for Best First Book in the History of Religions for his book, Unifying Hinduism: Philosophy and Identity in Indian Intellectual History.
’93 Catherine “Betsy” Buck was married in October 2011 to Bill Bridwell on Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts, where she works as a veterinarian. | Joseph Iannacone was granted a Gilder-Lehrman summer fellowship at Clare College, Cambridge University, in England. | Rebecca Smith received the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics, and Engineering Mentoring by the National Science Foundation at a White House ceremony in December. The award recognized her improvement of education as codirector of the science and health education partnership at the University of California, San Francisco.
’95 Lisa Kereszi, a lecturer at Yale School of Art and acting director of undergraduate studies in photography, has a new book coming out about her family’s business, Joe’s Junk Yard. | Michelle Dunn Marsh gave a talk on collecting photography at the G. Gibson Gallery in Seattle, Washington, on January 28. Forthcoming books on which she is working include Joe’s Junk Yard by Lisa Kereszi
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received the Martin Luther King Social Justice Award from Dartmouth College for his commitment to the quest of bridging health care disparities. | Kathleen Sherrod has published her first book, a curated selection of entries from Suppertime Sonnets, a blog at which she wrote and posted a pseudo-Shakespearean sonnet every single day for two years. | Daniel Sonenberg was promoted to associate professor at the University of Southern Maine. The father of identical triplet boys, he recently completed his opera, The Summer King, about Josh Gibson, the great Negro League baseball player. | Stefan Weisman received a Ph.D. from Princeton and is now on the faculty of Bard College High School Early College in Queens, New York. He also scored the experimental opera Darkling, which was released to critical acclaim in the fall.
’91 Scott Licamele joined the equity sales team last year at private investment bank Troika Dialog in New York, where he covers U.S. institutional clients. Scott appears frequently on Bloomberg Television to discuss investing in Russia, Ukraine, and Kazakhstan.
’89 Sally Bickerton, the new director of development of REDCAT (The Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater), hosted a reception in November for President Leon Botstein and fellow alumni/ae in Los Angeles.
’92 20th Reunion: May 25–27, 2012
Please join your classmates Lisa (Sanger) Blinn, Josh Kaufman, Mark Steiner, and others, back on campus in May.
David Newhoff recently completed the short film Gone Elvis, a fictional portrayal of a day in the life of a homeless, female veteran of the Iraq war. The movie is dedicated to the late filmmaker and Bard professor Adolfas Mekas. | Alexandra Wentworth shares her stories about growing up as the daughter
Chidi Achebe, CEO of Harvard Street Community Health Center, Dorchester, Massachusetts,
of the White House press secretary and entertaining with her husband, George Stephanopoulos, in her new book, Ali in Wonderland.
’87 25th Reunion: May 25–27, 2012 Please join your classmates Anne Wallace Allen, David Avallone, Anna Bloomer, Dan Cherubin, Mary Gaughan, Eva Lee, Gary Mosca, Pat Ryan, Bill Stavru, Laura Stout, Raissa St. Pierre, and others, back on campus in May. Suzanna Geraghty created a new theater piece, Zoe’s Auditions, which combines elements of farce, physical comedy, and audience participation. She is an actress on both sides of the Atlantic; her performances have been well received by the New York Times and the Irish Times. | Eva Lee is screening her digital animation film, Winter’s Veil, as part of the Leaders in Software and Art (LISA) program in New York. | Tobin Rodriguez loves his job managing the Cambridge/Somerville emergency services program in Massachusetts.
Dancing with Dynamite: Social Movements and States in Latin America by Benjamin Dangl ’03 ak press Award-winning journalist Dangl explores the complex and often explosive dynamics between contemporary grassroots social movements and state powers in seven Latin American countries. Using original research and extensive interviews with workers, farmers, and politicians, he investigates the strategies of these liberal social movements and examines how they might translate internationally.
Disintegrating Democracy at Work: Labor Unions and the Future of Good Jobs in the Service Economy by Virginia Doellgast ’98 ilr press Doellgast, lecturer in comparative employment relations at the London School of Economics and Political Science, argues that, in the presence of strong unions and effective collective bargaining, high pay and good working conditions are feasible for even marginal service jobs. Based on a comparative study of call-center jobs in Germany and the United States, the book emphasizes the importance of policy choices in promoting broad access to good jobs.
Maggie’s Second Chance: A Gentle Dog’s Rescue
’86 The Beastie Boys, including Adam Yauch, were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland on April 14. The Beastie Boys are among their generation’s most politically active groups, staging the Tibetan Freedom Concerts and raising millions of dollars for the cause. Adam, who received the College’s 2011 Charles Flint Kellogg Award in Arts and Letters, formed the group while in high school. | Andrew Zwicker is the head of science education at the Princeton Plasma Physics Lab. For the past three years, he has been taking
by Nancy Furstinger ’78, illustrated by Joe Hyatt the gryphon press Based on a true story, this children’s picture book tells the story of Maggie, a pregnant black Labrador retriever abandoned by her owners and saved by a class of Texas fourth-graders.
The Concession Stand: Exaptation at the Margins by Arpine Konyalian Grenier MFA ’98 otoliths Memoir, essay, and poetry fuse in this transcendent collection by Armenian American writer Grenier, whose “mother tongue has lost [her],” sending her consciousness across cultures and history to weave lyric compositions reflecting on all human language and thinking.
Excavating the Present, Unearthing Eternity: A Sculpture and Poetry Collaboration by Lisa Harris ’74, MFA ’91, and Nancy Valle two women and a shovel Organized according to the months of the year, this collection of poems is arranged as a book of hours and accompanied by images of Valle’s ceramic work. In elegant language, the poet marks the passing of time and explores her spirituality.
Uncle Tom’s Cabin and the Reading Revolution: Race, Literacy, Childhood, and Fiction, 1851–1911 by Barbara Hochman ’67 university of massachusetts press Impressively researched and lucidly written, Hochman’s book examines the shifting cultural contexts of Harriet Beecher Stowe’s iconic novel and the multifaceted meanings the text provides. Hochman’s scholarly work positions itself as a resource, not only on Stowe’s novel, but on the history of the book and of reading in general.
Center: Andrew Zwicker ’86. photo NASA’s Reduced Gravity Education Office
class notes 39
undergraduate students and K–12 teachers on the ride of a lifetime as teams of six design, build, test, and fly an experiment in microgravity aboard NASA’s reduced-gravity aircraft, nicknamed the “Vomit Comet.”
science fiction anthology, Dark Fusions: Where Monsters Lurk. | Glenn Stout wrote a Boston Globe best seller, Fenway 1912: The Birth of a Ballpark, a Championship Season, and Fenway’s Remarkable First Year. He also wrote Able to Play, the latest title in his Good Sports juvenile book series.
’84 Anita Abriel Hughes recently returned to writing and got a two-book contract with St. Martin’s Press, New York. Her debut novel, Monarch Beach, will be published this summer, and her second novel, Savory Hill, will be released in early 2013. | Jonathan Slone founded G-Trade Services, the largest electronic broker of nondollar equities in the world. He is now in Asia, where he is chairman and CEO for CLSA’s global brokering operations. | Steven Zucker is the first dean of art and history at the online Khan Academy, a leading not-forprofit, open-education resource that provides a free, world-class education to anyone, anywhere.
’83 Julie Cleveland had the title role in the production of Sylvia by the Cape Ann Theatre Collaborative in Gloucester, Massachusetts. | Tim Long wrote and produced his third documentary for Florida PBS, A Century in the Sun: Henry Flagler and the Making of Modern Florida.
Jed Friedland is the founding member of Bednar | Friedland, a California-based law firm specializing in personal injury, trust, business, and construction defect litigation. | Terry Szold, adjunct professor of land use planning at MIT, received the 2011 Charles Downe Trustees Distinguished Service Award from the American Planning Association’s Massachusetts chapter.
After celebrating 30 years with NBC Universal/Comcast Television—currently in news production for anchor Brian Williams and the Today Show—Charles Moore will retire soon to launch MooreMusicWorks, a monster movie channel. | John Rolfe writes two biweekly columns for the Poughkeepsie Journal: “It’s Always Something” (family humor), and “Commuting” (self-explanatory). He also produces NHL coverage for Sports Illustrated, and has written and edited a series of sports books for children.
Frances Fitch has accepted a one-semester position for the fall as visiting professor of music at Ferris University in Yokohama, Japan. | Howard Good has published his fourth poetry collection, Dreaming in Red. | Donna Shepper is a certified aromatherapist and kundalini yoga teacher in New York City, as well as a social media specialist for the New York Open Center.
’78 Thomas Blackburn cowrote a documentary film, Orwell Rolls in His Grave, which was shown at the Philadelphia Film Festival.
30th Reunion: May 25–27, 2012 Please join your classmates Chris Kendall, George Smith, Geoffrey Stein, and others, back on campus in May.
John Cline is executive producer of the successful New York visual effects and editorial creative boutique Goodpenny. His fifth novel, What Is Mine, was submitted to publishers in January 2012. | Liza Wherry stays busy in the television and film production world, as do the three sons she has with John Cline. | Bruce Wolosoff released a solo piano CD of his original piano compositions called Many Worlds, which integrates romantic, modern classical, jazz, and blues music into an authentic American voice. He also composed the music for the ballet White City, which was chosen as Best of Chicago 2011 by the Chicago Sun-Times.
Mark Ebner cowrote a book that has been turned into a Lifetime Television movie, We Have Your Husband, starring Esai Morales (nominated for an NAACP Image Award for his performance).
’81 Jonathan Feldman is organizing a global teach-in with colleagues in Europe and the United States in the spring to examine alternatives to the economic, ecological, and environmental crises. | Paul Hostovsky had his third, full-length collection of poetry, A Little in Love a Lot, recently published by Main Street Rag, based in Charlotte, North Carolina. | Peter Marra was recently interviewed in the zine, Yes, Poetry (yespoetry.com), where he discussed his body of work as a poet. | Lynn Spitz will have his first story appear later this year in the
40 class notes
’74 Anne Bogart is the artistic director of New York– based SITI Company, a dance theater that is collaborating with Bill T. Jones’s dance company, New York Live Arts, to create A Meditation on the Rite of Spring in honor of the 100th anniversary of that ballet’s scandalous premiere at the Ballets Russes. | Tom Hunter is now a biotech patent attorney in Oakland, California, after careers as a physicist, marine biologist, molecular biologist, and founder of a biotech company. | Christine Wade won a James Jones Prize for her first novel, Seven Locks, to be published by Simon & Schuster in 2012.
’85 Elizabeth Robinson is the Hugo Fellow at the University of Montana this spring. Her new collection of poetry, Three Novels, was published in the fall of 2011.
Virginia Center for the Arts. Her new book is Bonjour, Happiness (see p. 37).
’72 40th Reunion: May 25–27, 2012 Please join your classmates Richard Freeman, John Katzenbach, Lis Semel, and others, back on campus in May. John Katzenbach‘s novel about schizophrenia, The Madman’s Tale, will be made into a feature film this summer in Australia. | Billy Steinberg wishes that college yearbooks existed from his years at Bard (1968–1972).
’71 Bruce Chilton was awarded an honorary doctor of divinity degree from the General Theological Seminary, New York (see p. 29). Chilton, chaplain of Bard College, has published over 50 books and over 100 articles on the New Testament and early Judaism. | Lawrence Merrill had a solo photo exhibition at the George Eastman House in Rochester, New York, and Gallery 291 in San Francisco. He was also included in an exhibition at the Federal Reserve Bank in Washington, D.C.
’75 Pamela Atkinson writes that after more than 35 years living in Cambridge, England, she is now spending more time in Sardinia near the sea in an ancient town called Bosa—beautiful, wild, and elemental. | Jamie Cat Callan won a Massachusetts Arts Council grant in fiction and a fellowship to the
’70 Steven Miller wrote “Subtracting Collections: Practice Makes Perfect (Usually),” which appears in the 650-page volume, Museums and the Disposals Debate, published by MuseumsEtc, based in Boston and Edinburgh, Scotland. | JoAnn Schafer was awarded the Bishop’s Cross from the
Episcopal Diocese of New York in November for her tireless work on behalf of her community.
’69 Barbara Slovinski Beall has enjoyed her transition from chair of the Department of Art, Music, and Theatre at Assumption College, Worcester, Massachusetts, to traveling in the Amazon River basin. | Ellen (Giordano) Cartledge loves her job as the JETS (Jewish Employment Transition Services) program coordinator at Jewish Family Services of Greater Hartford, Connecticut. She organizes events, plans social media and marketing policies, and arranges counseling services for people who are in transition, regardless of religion. | Ward Feurt also loves his work as the manager of the Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge on the coast of Maine. | Elaine Hyams and her husband are preparing for retirement in Oxford, England, in the summer of 2013. | Pierre Joris had a 300-page collection of essays from renowned scholars and critics contributing texts on many aspects of his work published, entitled Pierre Joris—Cartographies of the In-Between. | Kadi Kiiss works as a graphic artist in Mill Valley, California, when she is not herding cats or testing recipes. | Devorah Tarrow gave a seminar on “A Woman’s Dissatisfaction— What Makes It Wise or Foolish, Right or Wrong?” in February at the Aesthetic Realism Foundation in New York. | Emilie (Greig) Wolitzer is enjoying her retirement in Charleston, South Carolina, after 34 years as a high school English and German teacher.
’66 Jimmy Camicia will appear in the documentary Pay It No Mind: Marsha P. Johnson. He also wrote Spare Change for a Dying Queen and Soul, which will be presented in San Francisco this year. | Anna (Schneider) Sequoia married her long-time domestic partner, Una Fahy, to the beat of salsa music in a triple wedding ceremony on September 19, 2011, in their garden in Glen Cove, New York.
Scottish Herbs and Fairy Lore by Ellen Evert Hopman ’74 pendraig publishing Hopman, a master herbalist, shares her knowledge of Celtic medicinal herbs, ancient folklore, festivals, traditions, magic, and cultural practices native to Scotland. She explores the rich roots of fairy tales, magic, and worship and explains the powerful use of herbs for healing.
The Tolstoy of the Zulus: On Culture, Arts, and Letters by Stephen Kessler ’68 el léon literary arts Kessler, a poet, translator, novelist, and literary critic, expands his scope in these 55 essays, where he turns his insight and distinctive wit to a range of contemporary topics such as the artistic response to 9/11, Google’s Universal Library, Philip Roth, J. D. Salinger, Harry Belafonte, Bob Dylan, and other culture makers.
Little Black Book by Reneé Khatami ’77 random house This striking board book, written and designed by Khatami for infants and young children, teaches all about the color black in multisensory experiences, from the feel of a black bunny’s fur to the inky color of a starlit night.
Luminous Airplanes by Paul La Farge, visiting assistant professor of writing farrar, straus & giroux Returning home with a drug-induced hangover from a pagan festival in the Nevada desert, a disaffected computer programmer living in post– tech boom San Francisco learns his grandfather has died. He begins a pilgrimage to his grandfather’s house in an upstate New York town, where he’ll clean out the remnants of five generations and fall in love with a Turkish American woman whom he loved in childhood. Seriousness and humor, memory and loss, flying machines and the end of the world collide in La Farge’s new “hyperromance.”
What Is College For? The Public Purpose of Higher Education
Rikki (Degre) Ducornet published her eighth novel, Netsuke. She also exhibited her new paintings recently in Santiago, Chile.
edited by Ellen Condliffe Lagemann, Bard Center Fellow and Levy Institute Research Professor, and Harry Lewis teachers college press These six compelling essays, each one focusing on a different educational sector, offer a penetrating image of higher education today and advocate manifold strategies to reinvigorate the wider public purpose of America’s colleges and universities. Lagemann and Lewis argue for the renewal of a democratic mission for higher learning and maintain that such civic engagement—in intellect, morality, and action—is vital to the overall health of our nation.
Lie Down Too
50th Reunion: May 25–27, 2012
by Lesle Lewis ’74 alice james books In this collection of short poems, Lewis offers minute and intimate details of a life in full bloom—a home, a garden, a family, and illness. Grief and joy exchange places on the page, seasons cycle, wild animals roam, and poetic non sequiturs delight on each page.
Please join your classmates Penny Axelrod, Jack Blum, Linda Edmonds, Peter Eschauzier, Ann Ho, Stephen Hurowitz, Ralph Levine, Susan Playfair, and others, back on campus in May. Jack Blum, a former top congressional investigator of financial crimes, is featured in We’re Not Broke, a documentary film that examines widespread
class notes 41
corporate tax evasion and that premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival. | Rayna Meshorer Harman remembers taking the train in the snow from Boston to Bard for her college interview in 1959. She was entranced by the whole adventure into the unknown: solitary, kind of scary, and very interesting. | Eve (Odiorne) Sullivan, an editorial assistant at MIT and founder of Parents Forum, received an award from Digital Book World for her book Where the Heart Listens: A handbook for parents and their allies in a global society. | Nan-Toby (Feldman) Tyrrell recalls her days at Bard as a special part of her life. She has written a poem about her first winter at Bard, which you can view online in the Class Notes section of the alumni/ae website, AnnandaleOnline.org.
’61 Thomas Benjamin is teaching music theory and composition at the Peabody Institute of Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, as well as composing, writing, and performing chamber music and jazz. | Diane (Miller) Himmelbaum retired in 2010 as a professor of art from St. John’s University, New York, after 41 years of teaching. She now works full time in her studio.
’59 Carolee Schneemann had a retrospective exhibit in Seattle, Washington, and Champaign-Urbana, Illinois. The current Millennium Film Journal features her film/video work, Correspondence Course, which was published by Duke University Press. She will be this year’s recipient of the Charles Flint Kellogg Award in Arts and Letters at Bard’s Commencement in May.
’57 Robert Bassler retired from his career as an art professor and has been exploring the mysterious realm inspired by his photography and interpreted in his oil paintings. He is engaged in the continuing development of his vocal capabilities, and has been an active member of his church choir.
’55 Anne Locke Packard has created a rich body of work as a painter of vivid images of Cape Cod.
’53 Sherman Yellen had a production of his new musical about the early life of Josephine Baker, Josephine Tonight! running at MetroStage in Alexandria, Virginia, and at the Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe in Sarasota, Florida, under the title Blackbird. He also wrote the book for Jolson, which is scheduled for a production at the Fulton Theatre
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in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. His memoir, Spotless, will be published as an e-book this year.
’52 60th Reunion: May 25–27, 2012 Please join your classmates Judith Clark, Kit Ellenbogen, Maurice Richter, Frances Sandiford, David Schwab, Ruth Schwab, Robert Stempel, and others, back on campus in May. Judith Clark enjoys singing with her husband as part of their duo, A Big Band. She is looking forward to returning to Bard for her 60th reunion in May. | Maurice Richter recently gave a BardCorps interview in which he talks about the 1950s, working with anthropologist Margaret Mead in her office in the American Museum of Natural History, and his time as a messenger boy for the U.S. Senate.
Room during September in New York City. | Deville Cohen had his solo exhibition, POISON, at New York’s Louis B. James gallery in October. The exhibition explored the allegorical potential of everyday objects. | Glen Fogel presented his solo exhibition, Goldye, to inaugurate the opening of Callicoon Fine Arts in New York in September. He also opened a new five-channel video installation, With Me. . . You, in October at Zilkha Gallery in Houston, Texas.
’09 César Alvarez will have the world premiere of his new indie rock musical Futurity at American Repertory Theater in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in spring 2012. The musical was written in collaboration with his band The Lisps, and began as his M.F.A. thesis project at Bard.
Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts
Adam Marnie’s solo exhibition, Locus Rubric, opened at Derek Eller Gallery in New York last September. He also participated in the group exhibition Norfolk at Thierry Goldberg gallery in New York, also in September.
Corin Hewitt’s new exhibit, Medium/Deep, opened in October at the Laurel Gitlen Gallery in New York. The solo exhibition was given a great review by the New York Times. | Alisha Kerlin presented her exhibition, In the distance she could see the clear blue sea, at LaMontagne Gallery in Boston last October. She also showcased the exhibition Perceptible by Comparison at New York’s Zach Feuer Gallery in July.
Trisha Baga and Lukas Geronimas collaborated on the exhibition Fernando at Franklin Street Works in Connecticut in October. A related performance by Trisha included rappelling objects down the side of a skyscraper, while Lukas had a solo exhibition, Fiji, at Chiles Matar gallery in New York in September. | Richard Garet presented a sound/video installation, blue cube++, in October in New York. He also had a sonic construction published by Bostonbased label Sourdine in August. | Leila Hekmat performed her seven-week project, The Four Chambered Heart, which began in November 2011, at Recess in New York. | Lauren Luloff’s solo exhibition, Ocean, Wind, & Still Life, opened at End of Century gallery in New York in October. The exhibition included many of Luloff’s expressionist oil paintings. | Doron Sadja premiered his new work, Breath, Heart, Skin for solo electronics, using a unique multichannel sound system, for the Emerging Artists Commission program in October in Brooklyn. | Samita Sinha performed her solo work, Cipher, at the Chocolate Factory, Long Island, New York, in November.
Amos Elkana was awarded the Israeli Prime Minister Prize for Composers in October at the Rebecca Crown Auditorium in Jerusalem. His composition Shivers was performed at the event by pianist Amit Dolberg. | Charles Mayton’s solo exhibition, The Difficult Crossing, opened at Balice Hertling & Lewis gallery in New York in September. René Magritte’s 1928 painting of the same name inspired the exhibition. | Laura Napier was in Delhi, India, for two months during an artist residency, and also traveled to California to produce a new participatory performance at The Hatchery. | Caitlin Parker had a solo multimedia exhibition, Half Life, at Wave Hill public garden and cultural center in the Bronx, New York, in September. The exhibition investigated the complex relationship between humans and nature. | Sreshta Rit Premnath had two solo exhibitions last fall: Storeys End in Berlin, Germany, in September, and Rhizome at Glyndor Gallery at Wave Hill in the Bronx, New York, in October. | Dominique Rey opened her solo exhibition, Erlking, at Southern Alberta Art Gallery, Canada, in January. She was also a featured artist in the group exhibition Macabre & Mysticism at Red Roots Gallery in New York in October.
’10 Alisa Baremboym was part of a dual exhibition, Alisa Baremboym & skúta, at the gallery Show
’06 In June, poet and installation artist Bethany Ides performed the opera Children Get Stuck Places Underground, at the Half/Dozen Gallery in Portland, Oregon, about memory being rendered make-believe.
’05 Amra Brooks published an excerpt from her new work, Houses, in the September issue of Ping Pong, the literary journal of the Henry Miller Library. The journal aims to publish the work in English of lesser-known, international writers. | Cyrus Console published his book, The Odicy, in September. The book takes a look at society’s cultural and ecological crises; it received a favorable review from the San Francisco Chronicle. | Genya Turovsky’s chapbook, Dear Jenny, was published in poetry journal Supermachine last September. She also read her work at the jubilat/Jones Reading Series in Amherst, Massachusetts, in September. | Jonathan VanDyke performed With One Hand Between Us, a visual arts piece for a Performa 11 program, at Scaramouche Gallery in New York in November. The performance presents a sexually charged psychodrama using actors and sculptures.
’04 Adriana Farmiga opened her solo project, versus, at New York’s La MaMa Gallery in January 2012. | Sue Havens exhibited SpaceKnit, a collection of three-dimensional paintings and sculptures at 4 4 3 P A S in New York in January 2012.
’03 Kelly Kaczynski presented her solo exhibition, Study for Convergence Performance (ice), at Gahlberg Gallery/McAninch Arts Center, Glen Ellyn, Illinois, in January. The exhibition fuses the artist’s studio as both a performance and production site. | Carlos Motta collaborated with Joshua Lubin-Levy in releasing the book Petite Mort: Recollections of a Queer Public, published by Forever & Today, Inc., in September. The book launch was followed by a performance. | Marc Swanson had three solo exhibitions last summer, including The Second Story, at the Contemporary Arts Museum in Houston, Texas; The Other Side, at the Baldwin Gallery in Aspen, Colorado; and Midnight Sun, at the Inman Gallery in Houston, Texas.
’02 Carrie Moyer’s solo exhibition, Canonical, opened at New York’s CANADA gallery in September.
Look Down, This Is Where It Must Have Happened by Hal Niedzviecki MFA ’97 city lights books In smart, deft prose, Niedzviecki creates a quirky collection of short stories that provide a twisted yet heartfelt moral compass for contemporary readers—identifying the ruptured zeitgeist of our times and confronting its hypocrisies with insight, humor, and defiance.
Sounds from the Back Alley by Kallia Papadaki ’00 polis publishers In Papadaki’s short story collection, written in Greek, six main characters weave an urban puzzle unfolding on an ordinary day in Athens. A blind man gets abducted by the Russian-Pakistani mafia; Mrs. Jane Doe and a friend get swindled; and a writer gets entangled in a story of murder and Facebook intrigue, among other tales.
Contributions in Stock-flow Modeling: Essays in Honor of Wynne Godley edited by Dimitri B. Papadimitriou, president, Levy Economics Institute, and Jerome Levy Professor of Economics; and Gennaro Zezza, research scholar, Levy Economics Institute palgrave macmillan This collection of essays by eminent contemporary scholars honors the work of British economist and Levy Institute Distinguished Scholar Wynne Godley (1926–2010), whose ideas challenged the Keynesian wisdom of his day and accurately predicted the post-boom financial crisis of the ’80s. Godley’s contributions to monetary economics and macroeconomic modeling remain relevant in today’s fiscal climate.
My Reach: A Hudson River Memoir by Susan Fox Rogers, visiting associate professor of writing cornell university press From the seat of her kayak, Rogers explores the Hudson River, which she has spent years paddling. Her elegantly poised memoir navigates the currents and eddies, towns and communities, wildlife and history, of a monumental American estuary, while bravely traversing the profound personal journey of grieving for both her elderly parents.
Ghost on the Throne: The Death of Alexander the Great and the War for Crown and Empire by James Romm, James H. Ottaway Jr. Professor of Classics alfred a. knopf This riveting and scholarly account tells the tale of the immediate aftermath of Alexander’s death. The bloody attempts to fill the vacuum of leadership Alexander left behind divided an empire, once united from Greece to modern-day Pakistan, into the fractious and warring nationstates we still recognize.
The American Bourgeoisie: Distinction and Identity in the Nineteenth Century coedited by Sven Beckert and Julia B. Rosenbaum, assistant professor of art history palgrave macmillan Beckert and Rosenbaum gather scholars from across disciplines—from literature to art history to sociology—to investigate the dynamics of identity and the class formation of an American elite. These essays focus on how shared cultural practices created distinctiveness within society.
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Michelle Handelman was named 2011 Guggenheim Fellow for Creative Arts–Film and Video. She also gave a talk at the Eastern State Penitentiary in Philadelphia about her video installation on transgendered inmates, a project cosponsored by Gender Reel Fest.
Maggi Quinlan works with the operations division at Chesapeake Energy to ensure daily compliance on drilling locations within the Marcellus Shale. She interacts with regulatory agencies regarding violations at well sites and remediation activities. Maggi was married in a Catholic ceremony on December 10, 2011.
Emily Wheat Maynard’s jewelry line, Elva Fields, introduced a capsule collection in collaboration with new retailer C. Wonder. The collection had its debut at C. Wonder’s flagship SoHo store in New York in October, and is also online at cwonder.com.
’97 Sadie Benning showcased her solo exhibition, Transitional Effects, at Participant Inc in New York in October. Benning also released a video animation, Play Pause, in Boston, for the group show Dance/Draw in January 2012. | Carolyn Guinzio’s third book, Spoke & Dark, was chosen by Alice Quinn for the 2010 To The Lighthouse/A Room of Her Own Prize and will appear in fall 2012 (Red Hen Press). A chapbook, Variations on a Pile of Bricks, is due in spring 2012 from Dancing Girl Press. Together with designer Stephenie Foster, she founded Yew: A Journal of Innovative Writing & Images by Women, which debuted in November 2011. It can be found at www.yewjournal.com.
’00 ’08 Molly Williams, Bard CEP admissions and alumni/ae coordinator, organized a community event on land conservation and climate change at Bard in January. The event consisted of a public lecture, reception, and roundtable. Among the roundtable participants were Christine DeBoer ’08, executive director of the Wallkill Valley Land Trust; Katrina Shindledecker ’06, director of land preservation at the Hudson Highlands Land Trust; and Katrina Howey ’04, northeast program coordinator at the Land Trust Alliance. Also in attendance was Kirsten Wilson ’07.
Anne Eschapasse was recently appointed head of exhibitions and scientific publications at the Musée National des Beaux-Arts du Québec, in Quebec City. | Stephanie Lake (Ph.D. ’09), curator turned jewelry designer, was recently the subject of a PBS / TPT (Twin Cities Public Television) feature on her work. She was also named “Best Jewelry Designer” in the Twin Cities by lifestyle publication Minnesota Monthly.
’99 Judith Gura’s next book, Design After Modernism: Furniture and Interiors, 1970–2010 (W. W. Norton), was published on February 20, 2012.
’07 ’95 Amy Sillman opened her solo exhibition Thumb Cinema at Capitain Petzel gallery in Berlin, Germany, in November. The exhibition included oil paintings, animation, and prints that question feminism and humor.
’87 Maddy Rosenberg collaborated with Istanbulbased artist Mustafa Pancar to create Cityscapes, an exhibition of urban landscapes, which opened in December at Kullukcu Gallery in Munich, Germany. Cityscapes focused on concepts of integration and identity, and was sponsored by the U.S. Consulate General.
Bard Center for Environmental Policy ’11 Tim Banach received two job offers in January, one with the Clean Energy Finance and Investment Authority in Connecticut, and one with the Pace Energy and Climate Center in White Plains, New York. He accepted the job with Pace as senior analyst working in New York and New England. | Brent Miller testified about “Sunday hunting” in front of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives’ Game and Fisheries Committee. His master’s thesis and internship work on this topic proved invaluable in his current position as Northeastern States manager at the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation.
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Amy Faust is adjusting to the eight-hour time difference in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, where she is an environmental specialist at the World Bank, specializing in climate change planning. | Katie Van Sant returns to Bard as the MBA in Sustainability marketing and recruiting coordinator. Her task is to help launch the new degree program, which is based in New York, and to recruit the pioneering class to enroll in the fall of 2012.
Center for Curatorial Studies ’11
Bard Graduate Center: Decorative Arts, Design History, Material Culture
Nova Benway is curatorial assistant at The Drawing Center, New York. | Nathan Lee’s recent curatorial projects include How We Move at SALT Beyog˘ lu, Istanbul, and Joe / Brains / Lamar at CCS Bard. | Courtney Malick contributes to V Magazine and DIS Magazine (dismagazine.com), and also to the forthcoming publication, Academic Museums: Exhibitions and Education, from MuseumsEtc, based in Boston and Edinburgh, Scotland.
Michelle Tolini Finamore curated Cocktail Culture at the Norton Museum of Art in West Palm Beach, Florida. She also published “A Triumph in Culinary Art: Epicurean Displays at the Copley Plaza,” in the Winter 2011 issue of Gastronomica: The Journal of Food and Culture.
Sohrab Mohebbi received a 2011 Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Grant. | Yulia Tikhonova curated Bronx Masquerade, Bronx Library Center, New York; Hunting for Pheasants, Cleopatra’s Gallery, Brooklyn; and Irina Korina, Scaramouche Gallery, New York.
In December, Kathryn Hall, curator of decorative arts at the Louisiana State Museum in New Orleans, gave a presentation on “Neoclassical Taste in Louisiana, 1790–1840” at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs de l’Océan Indien on Reunion Island.
Christina Linden’s recent curatorial projects include Living as Form at the Kadist Art Foundation, San Francisco; In the Common Corner of Four Rooms at the Statler Waldorf Gallery, Los Angeles; and SHOUT! a project for Swords to Plowshares, at Hilliard Gallery, San Francisco. | Zeynep Öz was assistant curator of the fifth annual Home Works, an exhibition and forum on cultural practices held in Beirut. He also recently cofounded SPOT in Istanbul, a educational and curatorial project that
’05 Marcella Ruble recently coauthored Beverly Hills’ First Estate: The House and Gardens of Virginia & Harry Robinson with Timothy Lindsay and Evelyn Carlson.
aims to generate funding and provide art enthusiasts with the opportunity to learn about contemporary art. | Hajnalka Somogyi cocurated the exhibition Yona Friedman: Architecture without building at the Ludwig Museum of Contemporary Art, Budapest, Hungary.
’08 Vincenzo de Bellis is founding member and codirector of Peep-Hole, a project space in Milan. He was the 2011 curator in residence at Fondazione Pastificio Cerere in Rome, and is a frequent contributor to Artforum.com and Mousse magazine. | Tyler Emerson, who runs the Dorsch Gallery in Miami with her partner Brook Dorsch, produced 16 exhibitions in 2011 and wrote numerous catalogue essays.
Paris Was Ours: Thirty-Two Writers Reflect on the City of Light edited by Penelope Rowlands ’73 algonquin books of chapel hill In this rich and varied collection of personal essays, Rowlands assembles a powerful and discerning portrait of how generations of writers—all once outsiders, all expats—assimilate the world’s most seductively romantic city and join the moveable feast that is Paris.
Stalina by Emily Rubin ’78 amazon encore In this novel, Stalina, a trained chemist who flees Russia after the fall of the Soviet Union, uses her imagination to turn her job as a maid at a seedy Connecticut motel into a bright opportunity for her future. As her American Dream begins to materialize, the past keeps wrenching her back.
The Quilt and The Truck
’07 Florencia Malbrán is completing a doctorate in arts and humanities at Rosario National University, Argentina, and is a Ph.D. Fellow at the National Scientific and Technical Research Council (CONICET), also in Argentina. | Chen Tamir cocurated Emotional Blackmail at the Southern Alberta Art Gallery, Canada, with Markus Thor Andresson. | Emily Zimmerman was awarded the Lori Ledis Emerging Curator Award by BRIC Contemporary Arts, Brooklyn, and also a two-week residency in October with Space Bandee in Busan, Korea.
’06 Kerryn Greenberg was appointed curator (international art) at Tate Modern, London, and is leading the Tate’s newly formed Africa Acquisitions Committee. | Geir Haraldseth was appointed curator at the National Academy of Fine Art, Oslo. A book documenting his selected exhibitions is forthcoming from Torpedo Press, Oslo. | Zeljka Himbele curated the exhibition Shift and Flow, at Dorsky Gallery Curatorial Programs, Long Island City, and Alison Owen’s solo exhibition, Shelf Life, at Cuchifritos Gallery, New York City.
by Nancy Shaver, MFA sculpture faculty publication studio Published on the occasion of Shaver’s solo exhibition, Three sisters, four beauties and a work-horse, this book celebrates the simple beauty of utilitarian objects while simultaneously exploring their place within a greater aesthetic context. The edition showcases Shaver’s most recent body of sculptural work and includes an essay contemplating the social values and aesthetics of her art by Jean-Philippe Antoine, translated from the French by Anna Moschovakis MFA ’98, MFA writing faculty.
Hard Landing by Rick Smith ’65, with an introduction by Vicki Lindner ’66 lummox press A collective ode to the wren, this book of poems not only celebrates the fragility and resilience of this tiny-winged creature, but also offers its readers a rare study of nature itself in evocative and profoundly lyrical observations.
Well Then There Now by Juliana Spahr ’88 black sparrow books Spahr’s fourth collection of poetry explores the landscapes of her life, taking the reader on intricate sensory and intellectual journeys navigated by “found language,” sparse photos, gray maps, and compass points, from the opening poem, written in Honolulu, to the final poem, written in Berkeley.
One Day I Will Write About This Place: A Memoir
’04 Steven Matijcio was selected for a 2010 Emily Hall Tremaine Exhibition Award for the exhibition project paperless. He also participated in the 3rd Gwangju Biennale International Curator Course, Gwangju, South Korea.
’03 Jimena Acosta cocurated the traveling exhibition, Transit Cases: Chairs from Mexico, and Criteria, a group show at Averill and Bernard Leviton A+D Gallery at Columbia College, Chicago. | Kelly Taxter collaborated on the exhibition Matters of Fact at the Hessel Museum of Art.
by Binyavanga Wainaina, Bard Center Fellow and director, Chinua Achebe Center for African Writers and Artists graywolf press In this gorgeously remembered memoir—a New York Times Notable Book for 2011—Caine Prize winner Wainaina writes about the Africa of his childhood: schools, media, family, religion, pop music, and books. As a child growing up in Nakuru, Kenya, with a Kenyan farmer father and Ugandan beauty parlor–owner mother, Wainaina feels separate from the familial, social, and political worlds that surround him. He can’t help but escape into alternative realities and dream worlds by voraciously reading fiction and literature until he finally begins to write himself, beginning a literary career that catapults him into the international spotlight.
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Lorelei Stewart is interim director of the University of Illinois at Chicago’s museum and exhibition studies graduate program, and curated the exhibitions File Type; Intimacies; and Archival Impulse.
Yulia van Doren, soprano, performed in Handel’s Orlando in the 2011 Mostly Mozart Festival, Lincoln Center, New York. Her upcoming performances include the role of Betsy in Monsigny’s Le roi et le fermier with the Opera Lafayette Orchestra at Opéra Royal de Versailles in February 2012.
Paul Babcock Munson II, 92, died on November 30, 2011. Born in Albany, he lived in Duanesburg, New York, with his wife of 53 years, the former Barbara Dennison. He graduated from Bard with a B.A. in literature, and earned his master’s degree at Columbia Teachers College. He served in World War II as a staff sergeant in the U.S. Army Air Corps. His love of music brought his baritone to the Capitol Hill Choral Society. He loved nature, people, and children.
’99 Henry Estrada, senior manager of public art, San Antonio, Texas, is also directing Casa Chuck, an invitational residency program and guest house in San Antonio that hosts artists, arts writers, and contemporary art curators.
Lucas Wong, piano fellow, completed his D.M.A. at the Yale School of Music. He made his solo debut with Liszt’s piano transcription of Berlioz’s Symphonie fantastique in fall 2011, and is one of only a few pianists around the world to ever perform this piece.
’98 Sarah Cook was appointed reader at the University of Sunderland, England, in the faculty of arts, design, and media. Her recent publications include Rethinking Curating: Art After New Media (MIT Press), and she was coeditor of Euphoria & Dystopia: The Banff New Media Institute Dialogues.
Yohan Yi, bass-baritone, completed the Los Angeles Opera Domingo-Thornton Young Artist Program in May 2011. He sang in the Cincinnati May Festival under the baton of James Conlon in 2011, and will do so again in May 2012.
Regine Basha is the new executive director at Artpace, San Antonio, Texas.
Graduate Vocal Arts Program ’11 Michael Bukhman, piano fellow, is completing his D.M.A at The Juilliard School with piano faculty member Robert McDonald. In May 2011, he competed in the 13th Arthur Rubinstein International Piano Master Competition in Israel. Julia Bullock, soprano, toured the United States, Europe, and Latin America as Pamina in Peter Brook’s production of Une flûte enchantée in the summer and fall of 2011.
’10 Ariadne Greif, soprano, appeared at the 2011 Ojai Music Festival in California with Dawn Upshaw, Graduate Vocal Arts Program artistic director and Ojai Festival music director, and premiered composer Ryan Chase’s setting of the Lewis Carroll poem “Jabberwocky” with Bard’s Contemporaneous ensemble.
G. William Beringer Jr., 91, who died on January 16, 2011, in Scarsdale, New York, enjoyed life and loved helping others. For 59 years, he belonged to the Quaker Ridge Golf Club, Scarsdale. He was married to Hazel for 70 years and was also a loving father and grandfather. Frederic James Bowlan, 86, of West Chester, Pennsylvania, died on July 17, 2009. Born in New York City, he served in the U.S. Army during World War II in the Philippines and also in the occupation of Japan. He graduated from Pace Institute of Accountancy, New York. He is survived by his wife, Anne McDonald Bowlan. Philip Michael Dowd, aka Brother Aelred, 89, died on May 21, 2004. Admitted to Bard as a special music student, he took his vows in 1933. He graduated from Catholic University of America. He was appointed to St. Joseph’s Juniorate in Barrytown, New York, and later to De La Salle College in Washington, D.C., where he pursued advanced degrees. He joined Manhattan College as director of libraries, was appointed curator of rare books, and was also the college’s archivist.
’09 Patrick Cook, tenor, sang for President Barack Obama’s town hall meeting at the University of Maryland in College Park in July 2011. He presented a recital in East Hampton, New York, under the auspices of Sing for Hope with Celine Mogielnicki ’10 in August 2011.
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Millard “Bill” Charlton Walker, 89, died on January 15, 2004, in Kissimmee, Florida. He was a decorated World War II combat veteran and a professor who taught music, art, and the humanities. Active in theater, he was a musician and vocalist whose art can be found in many private collections. He is survived by his wife of 58 years, Suzanne.
Christopher Stanley Smith, 89, of Geer Village, Connecticut, died on November 4, 2011. He grew up in New Haven and served in the U.S. Army during World War II. He was athletic director of the private boarding school Marvelwood and was also civil defense director in Cornwall in the 1950s, town prosecutor, and chief of the fire department.
’48 David Philip Fraleigh, 91, died on November 27, 2011. He was born in Poughkeepsie, New York, and grew up in Red Hook, where his family had lived since 1705. He served in the U.S. Air Force in the South Pacific during World War II. After returning, he became a pilot for Pan American-Grace Airways (Panagra), and then for Braniff International Airways, flying to South America for 36 years. He attended Antioch College, Bard, and University of Miami, intending to become a lawyer, but realized that he preferred flying for a living. He is survived by his wife of 60 years, Diana Stevens Fraleigh. Florence Margaret Yerdon Gould Cain McArdell, 91, of Palm Harbor, Florida, died on December 17, 2010. She was one of the first women admitted to Bard. James N. Rosenau, 86, died on September 9, 2011, in Louisville, Kentucky. He was a renowned scholar and teacher whose work was seminal in the field of international relations and who initiated the study of globalization. During World War II, Rosenau was drafted into the U.S. Army and sent to England as a cryptographer. On his return, he earned a B.A. in history from Bard. He compiled and edited the second volume of Franklin Roosevelt’s personal letters, and lived at the Roosevelt farm in Hyde Park, New York. He received a master’s degree from the School of Advanced International Studies and a Ph.D. from Princeton. He also wrote and produced a play, Kwangju. He is survived by his wife, Hongying Wang. Barbara “Bobbe” Stanton, 86, died on September 15, 2011. She studied sociology at Bard and came from a pioneer San Francisco family whose roots went back to 1850. Stanton was a stylish, energetic, kind, and passionate lover of life. Her people
skills were without equal, and the annual holiday luncheon at her beloved Metropolitan Club in New York, for about 50 of her closest friends, was an eagerly anticipated event. She is survived by her partner of 41 years, Ron Noland.
’49 Arthur Wilson DeBaun Jr. died at his home in San Antonio, Texas, on July 28, 2010. He received a B.A. in drama/dance from Bard and served in the U.S. Air Force during World War II, as well as in Korea and Vietnam. He was buried at Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery with full military honors. Guy S. Robinson died on October 12, 2011, in Dublin, Ireland. He asked that any residuals from his book, Philosophy and Mystification, be donated to Bard. Robert B. Sherman, 86, died on March 5, 2012, at his home in London. He was one half of the prolific, award-winning pair of brothers who composed songs for films such as The Jungle Book, The Aristocats, Winnie the Pooh, and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. Sherman, along with his brother Richard ’49, also wrote “It’s a Small World (After All),” among the most performed tunes of all time. Son of Tin Pan Alley composer Al Sherman, Robert Sherman was a World War II veteran who received two battle stars, an American Campaign Medal, and a Victory Medal, among others. At Bard, he majored in English literature and painting, and was also editor of the Bardian. After graduation, he and his brother, challenged by their father, began writing songs together. The brothers’ awards include 23 gold and platinum albums, a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and two Academy Awards (for best score and best song for “Chim Chim Chir-ee,” in Disney’s 1964 hit Mary Poppins). They became the only Americans ever to win first prize at the Moscow Film Festival and were inducted into the Songwriters’ Hall of Fame in 2005. President George W. Bush awarded them the National Medal of Arts in 2008 and commended them for music that “helped bring joy to millions.” In 2011, Bard awarded them honorary doctorates in fine arts at Commencement.
’50 Nelson Breese “Pete” Delavan Jr., 86, died on January 27, 2012. He was born in Seneca Falls, New York, joined the U.S. Naval Reserve in 1943, and earned his M.F.A. from Michigan’s Cranbrook Academy of Art. He founded Delavan Designs, in Interlaken, New York. He also taught art at Eisenhower College and codirected the Delavan Foundation, which was established by his mother, Elizabeth Hamilton Garnsey. In 1997, he and his wife, Edith Mabry Barnett, founded the Seneca Museum of Waterways and Industry.
Henry Jaeger, 88, died on November 12, 2011. A resident of Rhinebeck, he was an Iwo Jima veteran, whom family and friends describe as a poetic and engaging soul. Jaeger studied commercial art at Grand Central School of Art in Manhattan. When World War II began, he joined the Marines and was assigned to an intelligence unit in Pearl Harbor. When Jaeger landed on Iwo Jima, he recorded the action and its human toll in sketches and watercolors, which were later included in an exhibition at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. Postwar, Jaeger attended Black Mountain College, North Carolina, on the G.I. Bill, where he studied with artists Josef Albers and Jacob Lawrence. He transferred to Bard, studied with Stefan Hirsch, and developed a love of the Hudson Valley. After graduating with a B.A. in studio arts, he moved with his new wife, Claire Picken, to Paris, where he studied with modern French master Fernand Léger. Later, he exhibited in group shows at the Baltimore Museum of Art and National Academy of Design. Jaeger also worked in marketing at Sports Illustrated, Fortune, and Scientific American. He was a lifelong fly fisherman and outdoorsman, and he loved to fish the Beaverkill River. He is survived by his children, Niles ’75, Hilary, and Angela; and his grandchildren, Lucy and Alexander. Memorial contributions in his name may be made to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research.
unteered with the Friends of the James V. Brown Library. Her greatest interests were gardening and reading. Friends loved her for her kind and serene nature, her tolerance, and acceptance of people. She is survived by her husband, Charles.
Harvey Edwards, 80, died on October 10, 2011. A professional photographer, in 1973 he founded Edwards Films, in Chamonix, France. For the next 10 years, the company produced films about skiing and mountains. In 1982, the company moved to Eagle Bridge, New York, and continued to make short sports films. The company won many honors, including three CINE Gold Eagles. He is survived by his wife, Susie.
Kathleen Stein died on November 12, 2011. She was a literature major at Bard (specializing in Dostoevsky) and studied for her Ph.D. in comparative literature at Rutgers, before becoming editor of Circus Magazine and a founding editor at Omni magazine. A science and technology writer, Stein wrote for the New York Times, Biotechnology Newswatch, and UPI, among others. Her book, The Genius Engine, on the complex role of the prefrontal cortex of the human brain, was published in 2007. Stein’s great ability was to present technical information in understandable terms. Survivors include her partner of many years, Douglas Stein.
’59 Guy Cambria Jr., 74, of Tolland, Connecticut, died on October 15, 2011. He graduated from Bard with a B.A. in political science and spent his career in banking, retiring as president and CEO of Tolland Bank. He was chairman of the Connecticut Bankers’ Association, and the Drayton Retention Group, a Bermuda-based insurance company. He was also on the faculty of the Center for Financial Studies at Fairfield University, Connecticut. Guy is survived by his wife of 48 years, Barbara.
’60 Carol (Kimball) Haun, 73, died October 4, 2011. At Bard, she pursued drama and dance, and was a founding member of the Film Society. She also vol-
’63 Lynn Margaret Samuels, 69, died on December 24, 2011. According to the New York Times, Samuels’s “brash political opinions and unrestrained New York accent made her an unmistakable voice in the maledominated world of political talk radio.” Samuels, one of the first women to host a political radio show, made her name on WABC radio in the 1980s and ’90s. These “brash political opinions” also earned her hate mail. She had a distinctive and intimate style of personal commentary. Michael Harrison, publisher of Talkers, the journal of the talk radio industry, called Samuels a unique voice: “She was a pioneer for women in the modern talk radio era, and for liberal talk radio.” At WABC, she was fired three times for comments considered subversive. At Bard, she majored in drama and dance.
’65 Ray Mellett died in March, 2011. A retired attorney, she lived in Washington, D.C., and was married to Pat Allen. After graduating from Bard with a B.A. in political science, she went to New York University School of Law.
’68 Jim Fine, 66, entrepreneur, marketer, and bon vivant, died on December 11, 2011. He lived in Weston, Connecticut. Fine was born in Brookline, Massachusetts, and after a peripatetic secondary school career, landed at Bard as a drama/dance major, where his classmates included Blythe Danner and Chevy Chase. According to Bard legend, Fine helped introduce two students—Walter Becker and Donald Fagen—who went on to become Steely Dan. After graduating, Fine remained involved with Bard, and in recognition of
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this commitment, the welcome/reception area at the new Bard Alumni/ae Center will be named in his honor. Fine was a witty raconteur, charming and exasperating people in equal measure. In 2006 he roamed Italy for a year with his beloved wife, Nina Skaya. He was a news junkie and vocal Democrat, with several letters to the editor published in the New York Times. Contributions in his memory may be sent to the Jim Fine Fund, c/o Bard College Alumni/ae Office, PO Box 5000, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY 12504-5000.
’69 Ramon R. Pena, of Wakefield, Rhode Island, died on January 1, 2012, in Amherst, New York. He was born in Niagara Falls, graduated from Bard with a B.A. in economics, and attended graduate school at the University of Rhode Island. He was employed with the State of Rhode Island for 35 years. He enjoyed fishing, boating, and traveling, and had the gift of making friends wherever he went. In addition to his father, he is survived by his wife, Sharon.
’75 Paul Cyrus Bray, 60, died on November 18, 2011, at his home in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Born in Washington, D.C., Bray graduated from Bard with a B.A. in literature, and had a Ph.D. from City University of New York. He is the author of Things Past and Things to Come. A lively presence on the New York art scene of the 1970s and ’80s, Bray collaborated on the film Unmade Beds and was the lyricist and lead vocalist for the band Brains in Heaven. In 2008, he published his collected poems as Terrible Woods: Poems 1965–2000 (Dos Madres Press). He will be missed for his wit, charm, and artistry. Suzanne Nahalka died on September 1, 2011. She owned her own business and graduated with a B.A. from Bard in literature.
’76 Mark Kramer, 58, died on July 18, 2011. He was an uncompromising writer and a refusenik. He did only what was meaningful to him. He enjoyed collaborating with his partner, lighting designer Leni Schwendinger, on light projects, such as their Vacant Lots of Love, which will be part of an upcoming book on New York community spaces. Survivors include his mother, Margery, and Leni, his domestic partner and creative collaborator of 17 years.
’80 Leslie Kyle (Doerfler) Shepler died on December 15, 2011. She is survived by her husband of 25 years, Robert B. Shepler, who said, “She often
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spoke fondly of her years at Bard and the difference her Bard education made in her life.” She graduated with a B.A. in drama/dance.
program needed a “How to Get a Teaching Job” workshop. He conducted it for two summers, loved it and enjoyed giving back. He is survived by his wife of 28 years, Suzanne McBride Newton.
’88 Christopher M. Devine, 46, died on August 18, 2011. Born and raised in New York City, he had lived in Brielle, New Jersey, since 2006. Devine graduated from Bard with a B.A. in anthropology, and was a former real estate appraiser for Mitchell, Maxwell & Jackson, New York. He loved the Jersey Shore, and was a certified scuba diver and avid race car enthusiast. His lively personality at Bard was lovingly remembered by many friends during a memorial service on campus in October 2011. His friends also dedicated a tree in his name in the field behind Ward Manor. He is survived by his parents, Franklin E. and Lisa Devine Knobel; and his cherished girlfriend, Wendy Pierson.
’92 Laura Wilder Greene, 42, died on November 4, 2011. She graduated from Bard with a B.A. in Russian studies and earned her master’s degree in Russian studies at the University of London. Her love for Russia continued to her death. A fluent Russian speaker, she lived and worked in St. Petersburg, administrating a joint program with Bard College and St. Petersburg State University (Smolny College). Her family, friends, and associates will miss her very much. She is survived by her daughter, Emma Kisselev. She also leaves her companion for the last seven years, Maxim Gudkov.
’96 Sebastian Quezada died on December 15, 2011, in his home. He leaves a beautiful daughter, Isabella, a loving family, and hundreds of friends. Quezada was a charismatic, entertaining, and witty character who conquered life and work through building special relationships with people. He always looked for a common spark or bond between people. He was a partner at Max Mobile, New York. He was also an incredible chef, posting his latest recipes on Facebook and attracting the envious comments of many friends. He received his B.A. from Bard in economics.
’05 Maria Camilla Pignatti Morano died on January 30, 2012, in Rome, Italy. From 2005 to 2008, she was assistant curator at the Castello di Rivoli Museo d’Arte Contemporanea in Turin, for the exhibitions The Pantagruel Syndrome, for the first Turin Triennial, and Concept, Body and Dream. She was the cofounder of SOLO, a nonprofit space in the center of Rome. “Camilla was my classmate and we all remember her sparkling energy, contagious enthusiasm, and positive attitude toward life,” said Cecilia Alemani CCS ’05. “I will always remember her at Bard, in the secret garden behind CCS by the river. We would spend hours chatting and laughing with friends, sharing the formative experience that made us all friends.” Her survivors include her husband, Giovanni Francesco, and two children, Matilde and Giulio.
’11 Steven Edward Gregory, 22, of Churchville, Pennsylvania, died on December 21, 2011. He received his associate’s degree from Deep Springs College in California and his B.A. in philosophy from Bard. Last fall, Gregory planned to enroll in graduate school to get his secondary school teaching certificate and master’s degree in English. Like everything he pursued, he passionately began formulating his own methods of teaching grammar, literature, and writing. He loved learning and was a visionary thinker beyond his years. He was a gentle young man with a caring heart, whose insights were remarkable. His faith in God was the foundation of his character, and his integrity and honesty were keynotes of his life. He displayed a strong work ethic, whether playing football, learning to play the guitar, investigating entomology, or writing poetry. He will be sorely missed by family and friends. Survivors include his parents, W. Jay and Christine Lanier Gregory.
Friends ’97 Daniel Christopher Newton, also known as David, died on April 14, 2011. After graduating from Bard with an M.F.A. in sculpture, he achieved tenure and was associate professor of art at Guilford College, North Carolina, where he was awarded the 2007 Bruce B. Stewart Award for Excellence in Teaching, and the 2010 Outstanding Faculty Advisor Award for the State of North Carolina. A few years ago, he suggested that the Bard MFA
Dr. David S. Forkosh, 74, respected physician, hospital executive and longtime president of the FMH (Fairfield Memorial Hospital) Foundation, Illinois, died on February 11, 2012. Forkosh was a good friend of the Fisher Center and supported the annual Opera Talks program. He is survived by his wife and life companion, Linda Hirshman.
john bard society news pop quiz! Since we are almost at the time of the semester for final exams, we thought a quiz would be appropriate.
can you answer “yes” to any of the following: • Do you own securities that you have owned for more than a year, and which are worth more than you paid for them? • Do you wish to avoid paying taxes on that appreciation? • Can you afford to give up ownership of these securities? • Do you want to help Bard today? • Did you know that donating securities directly to Bard can be an effective, tax-smart strategy?
consider this situation and the following two scenarios:* Each year John makes a $10,000 donation to Bard. John also owns $10,000 of stock, for which he paid $1,000. Obviously, he has a $9,000 gain on these securities. Scenario A: John sells the $10,000 of appreciated stock to make his annual contribution to Bard. He pays $1,350 on the capital gain ($9,000 x 15 percent). He also receives a $10,000 charitable deduction, which reduces his income tax bill by $2,800 (assuming a 28 percent tax bracket). His tax savings are $1,450. The net cost of the gift is $8,550. Scenario B: Instead of selling the stock, John simply drops by Ludlow and delivers the stock certificates. He gets the same charitable deduction, but does not have to pay the capital gains tax. That gives John a $4,150 tax savings. The net cost of this gift to John is $5,850. So the gift of stock costs John $3,300 less than the cash gift, but yields to Bard the same $10,000 in either instance.
*Thanks to George Smith ’82, member of the Bard–St. Stephen’s Alumni/ae Association Board of Governors, for inspiring this article.
These descriptions provide information only. For specific information on your financial circumstances, please consult your legal and financial advisers. The John Bard Society recognizes alumni/ae and friends who support Bard’s future programs through a planned gift or in their estate plans. The John Bard Society provides new opportunities for Bard alumni/ae and friends to help the College thrive in the next century. If you would like to know more or receive a copy of our brochure, please contact Debra Pemstein at email@example.com, call 845-758-7405, or visit www.bard.edu/giving. All inquiries are confidential. photo Scott Barrow
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PO Box 5000, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY 12504-5000
U.S. Postage Paid
JULY 6 – AUGUST 19, 2012
Address Service Requested
dance | July 6–8
Compagnie fêtes galantes
bard music festival
Let My Joy Remain (Que ma joie demeure) Choreographed by Béatrice Massin
August 10–12 and 17–19
Contemporary reimaginings of Baroque dance
Two weekends of concerts, panels, and other events bring the musical world of Camille Saint-Saëns vividly to life weekend one Paris and the Culture of Cosmopolitanism weekend two Confronting Modernism
theater | July 13–22
The Imaginary Invalid By Molie`re Directed by Erica Schmidt A hilarious comedy about a housebound hypochondriac
Saint-Saëns and His World
film festival | July 12 – August 12
France and the Colonial Imagination Colonialism and cinematic responses to it
opera | July 27 – August 5
The King in Spite of Himself By Emmanuel Chabrier Libretto by Emile de Najac and Paul Burani American Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Leon Botstein, music director Directed by Thaddeus Strassberger A coproduction with Wexford Festival Opera
spiegeltent | July 6 – August 19
Cabaret and more Afternoon family entertainment, rollicking late-night performances, dancing, and intimate dining
A modern staging of a classic 19th-century opéra comique
Special SummerScape discount for Bard alumni/ae: order by phone and save 20% on most Bard SummerScape programs. Offer limited to 2 tickets per buyer and cannot be combined with other discounts. The 2012 SummerScape season is made possible in part through the generous support of the Board of The Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts at Bard College, the Board of the Bard Music Festival, and the Friends of the Fisher Center, as well as grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York State Council on the Arts, and the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the United States.
845-758-7900 | fishercenter.bard.edu Photo: ©Peter Aaron ’68/Esto