A Male President for Mount Holyoke College

A Male President for Mount Holyoke College

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A struggle arose over who would succeed Mary Emma Woolley as president of Mount Holyoke College in 1937. Over her 36-year tenure, Woolley had transformed Mount Holyoke into an elite women's college in which leadership in the administration and faculty was almost exclusively female. Beginning in 1933, a group of male trustees determined to change the college. This book tells the story of how this group dominated the search process and ultimately convinced the majority of the trustees to offer the presidency to Roswell Gray Ham, an associate professor of English at Yale University. This narrative could not have been told until after 1999, when material relating to the search process (memoranda, minutes of executive board sessions, letters, etc.) became available. The participants in this story speak in their own voices--faculty, alumnae, alumnae trustees on the search committee, male trustees who engineered the appointment, and American and international feminists. Among the prominent persons, in addition to outgoing president Woolley, is trustee Frances Perkins, U.S. Secretary of Labor, also an alumna. Woolley, the vast majority of the faculty, and a significant number of alumnae were strongly opposed to the hiring of Ham, and they fought back (unsuccessfully). The opposition also included many from outside the Mount Holyoke community, including the leadership of the American Association of University Women. This episode of strong opposition has led historian Joyce Avrech Berkman to conclude, in an historiographical foreword, that this book breaks new ground in our understanding of 1930s feminism.The Failed Fight to Maintain Female Leadership, 1934-1937 Ann Karus Meeropol ... The quote from Park as well as Keyesa#39; responses to Maguire and to the negative views of M. Carey Thomas, the former president of Bryn Mawr, and Millicentanbsp;...

Title:A Male President for Mount Holyoke College
Author:Ann Karus Meeropol
Publisher:McFarland - 2014-02-10


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