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John Harvard's Journal

Yesterday's News

From the pages of the Harvard Alumni Bulletin and Harvard Magazine

May-June 2005

1925 The Associated Harvard Clubs’ Committee on Service to the University suggests that descendants of Harvard graduates be given preference in the admission process; the Bulletin’s editors write, “Inbreeding within the student body would be quite as dangerous for the College itself as inbreeding in the Faculty… [it] never should be established.”

Illustration by Mark Steele

The Massachusetts legislature passes an act to permit construction of a footbridge over the Charles River from the Cambridge side to the site of the Business School’s proposed buildings.


1935 President Conant’s proposal to eliminate Latin as an entrance requirement for A.B. candidates creates a furor.…The Faculty Council decides that knowledge of either Latin or Greek will remain a requirement for that degree.


1945 Harvard Medical School accepts its first women students. The University, meanwhile, mails out 6,000 booklets entitled What about Harvard? to students on leave and other veterans, presenting its plans to help them resume or begin work at the College or professional schools.


1960 The Faculty of Arts and Sciences approves Social Studies as the second interdepartmental honors concentration for undergraduates, almost 60 years after History and Literature became the first.


1965 The market value of Harvard’s investments passes $1 billion.


1970 The U.S. invasion of Cambodia sends many students out on strike, demanding withdrawal from Southeast Asia, an end to the U.S. government’s “oppression of political dissidents,” and an end to defense research at universities.… The Faculty of Arts and Sciences rejects these demands but passes two antiwar motions and allows wide options for completing spring-term coursework.


1975 Class Day speaker Dick Gregory tells seniors, “You must offer your services to save the needy from the greedy.…Universities have to teach how to live, and get out of the business of teaching how to make a living.”


1980 The Quincy House Film Society screens the X-rated Deep Throat, hoping, according to the Crimson, to pay off the group’s debts. Right after the screening, the society’s co-presidents are arrested by state police and charged with “disseminating obscene matter.” Harvard’s general counsel notes that the College “strongly discouraged” showing a film it considered degrading and offensive, but thought the film society should decide for itself what to do.