Elizabeth Scripturient (the delinquent, ecumenical (hermionesviolin) wrote,
Elizabeth Scripturient (the delinquent, ecumenical
hermionesviolin

the Affair

I just finished reading Barry Werth’s The Scarlet Professor: Newton Arvin: a Literary Life Shattered by Scandal. The book came out last year, and i heard about the scandal very briefly from my professor in Queer Studies last spring. I think Gary did an adequate job of boiling down the scandal to its barest form, but the impression i got of the fates of the accused was much different from the story the book tells. Yes, Arvin did die shortly after leaving Smith, but despite the fact that he had battled depression throughout his life, he was doing very well psychologically at the time of his death -- he died of diabetes. Dorius and Spofford were the two young untenured professors who were not asked back. This was a decision of the trustees, though. The faculty as well as the president supported keeping them on. Also, they both successfully taught elsewhere, though Spofford later suffered multiple breakdowns. I really don’t see what Smith as an institution should apologize for. Perhaps i am misremembering what Gary said. Will be e-mailing him soon.
Tags: smith: homeland insecurities conference
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