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Fall 2000
Vol. 63, No. 1

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Rochester Review--University of Rochester magazine

The Review welcomes letters from readers and will print as many of them as space permits. Letters may be edited for brevity and clarity. Unsigned letters cannot be used, but names of the writers may be withheld on request.

Review of the Review

Your Spring-Summer issue contains, as usual, numerous items of delight to eye and brain.

I heartily commend Assistant Professor Linda Ware of the Warner School for her work on the educational inclusion of handicapped and disabled students (page 11). As a person with hereditary spino-cerebellar ataxia (SCA6) and a member of the Frederick County (Maryland) Commission on Disabilities, I agree emphatically with her closing statement: "Educational inclusion is the first step toward social inclusion." I would add only that the path to general inclusion and integration begins with a tolerant attitude and insistence on social justice.

William Alden Lee '54
Frederick, Maryland

Speed Bump

A passage from an article on quantum mechanics ("The Physics of Paradox," Spring-Summer 2000) states:

"This quirky field lays out theories and predictions that scientists like to call 'counter-intuitive.' . . . The rules open the door to 'impossibilities' like time travel or a transporter device that could beam information or matter across the galaxy faster than the speed of light."

The last line, referring to sending information faster than the speed of light is incorrect and misleading. So far there is no evidence that "entanglement" (the thing this paragraph discusses) leads to violation of causality, which is what is described. Some folks at IBM have demonstrated that transportation is possible. Their method and all other methods (to my knowledge) rely on classical information being sent, and this can only occur at speeds slower than the speed of light as dictated by relativity.

David Schuster
Providence, Rhode Island

Mary Aversano

Your notice on the death in January of Mary Passanante Aversano '40, '42 (MA) was much too brief.

The greatness of "Mama" Aversano is not easily measured on paper, but it is as real as life to the students who knew her as a longtime teacher at the Eastman School. She loved and accepted us and welcomed us into her home--and she always made you feel wonderful about yourself.

I so admired her for her tremendous heart and her staunch independence. She taught what she loved, the Italian language, and worked during the summer as a pharmacist. An awesome woman!

Pat Doherty Marcus '72E
Syracuse, New York

Exploiting the Boar

Concerning the Boar's Head Dinner tradition pictured on page 25 in the Spring-Summer issue:

I find the mindless laughter over the blatant slaughter cruel, and the disrespectful, immoral, and indecent exploitation of an innocent pig highly offensive behavior for any so-called civilized person or group, much less the future graduates of an enlightened university.

Mentally substituting a head of Homo sapiens might be helpful in reaching a swift change of planned traditional brutality.

Gertrude Ruth White Husted '46E, '51 (Mas)

An Eastman Coverup?

Rochesterians are conspiratorial liars in denying the facts about George Eastman's death. The entry for March 14 in Rochester's Sesquicentennial calendar, which says that he "died" on that date in 1932, implies a natural death. It was suicide, assisted by a firearm.

I was 13 and in the seventh grade. Al Sigl [legendary local newscaster, Class of '05] broadcast the news at noon, and it caused a sensation. All the kids were chattering about it. The important thing to kids was that "George Eastman was the richest man in Rochester."

I spent the afternoon playing hooky by going on a bike ride with my friend Charlie Hickson.

Dick Hawes '49
Oxford, Pennsylvania

As recounted in Beside the Genesee, the newly published pictorial history of the University, Eastman, lonely, hopelessly ill, and in great pain, took his own life at the age of 79.

As meticulous in ordering his death as in ordering his life, he left behind his famous farewell note scrawled moments before he pointed the gun to his heart: "My work is done. Why wait?" He had just that morning signed a codicil to his will leaving his entire fortune to the University of Rochester.

Dick Hawes is right that, at a time when suicide was widely considered an indefensible act, there was official reluctance to acknowledge the circumstances of Eastman's death. The April-May 1932 Rochester Review, for example, recorded only that his passing was "sudden and seemingly tragic," noting that the details both of his demise and his unexpected bequest "have since become familiar to our readers far and wide, having been chronicled in detail wherever newspapers are published"--Editor.

Picture to the Editor

In response to our request for memorabilia relating to the University's past, Jean Obdyke Kinney '38 sends us this snapshot of one of Rochester's early woman graduates--her mother, Edith Long Obdyke '13 (at the left of the photo), campaigning for women's suffrage.

The picture serves to remind us that this year marks both the 100th anniversary of the admission of women to the University and the 80th anniversary of women's achievement of the right to vote--two good reasons why Susan B. Anthony, as a foremost crusader in both causes, is so revered at Rochester.

This issue of Rochester Review celebrates the Anthony legacy with an account of some of the scholarship being carried on in her name at the University today. (See Martha Matilda Harper and the American Dream and Scholarship in the Name of 'Susan B.')

Volleyball Days

In response to your call for Rochester memories:

As I watched the end of the U.S. Women's Soccer Cup matches, I felt like I knew these women.

In another lifetime, I had worked hard with other young women--women I came to love and trust in four seasons of playing volleyball at Rochester. We came from different worlds, studied subjects as varied as our skin color and hair texture. But the uniforms and hair ties pulled away the differences, and we all appeared more similar than different.

What we received for the 30 hours a week we gave to the sport more than equaled the value of the education we were really there for. As we perspired, lifted weights, and ran drills until we were barely standing, I did not know that my spirit would be stronger for the rest of my life.

I am convinced that my professional success has much to do with my athletic experiences. Through losses, disappointments, and heartaches during 10 years of playing competitive sports, I have learned to persevere until I reached my goals. I thrive on the collective spirit and marvel at how much more we continually accomplish together than any of us could do alone.

Pauline Lucero-Esquivel '85
Albuquerque, New Mexico

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