Someday, we hope, a Harvard man who has been inspired with the real enthusiasm which Harvard gives so many of us will write his confessions, or rather praises, to contrast them with the views of H. E. Stearns '13 who has confessed in the current Forum. Mr. Stearns finds that Harvard "fails to stimulate the majority of its students to take advantage of its opportunities, that "it furnishes a totally inadequate intellectual discipline, and instead of teaching a man good habits of work and steady concentration, it encourages lazy and vicious habits." He finds that he "has known more men who have lost early ideals during their four years than" he has "known men who have won new ones;" "that the greater number of the student body were desperately matter-of-fact, intellectually shallow, utilitarian, interested, the same as crass Philistines outside of College, only in money-making, women and amusements;" "That most of" his "classmates were easy materialists and hedonists, at best well clothed, clean-cut young barbarians;" and "that those men who did not drink were looked upon with something like suspicion." These are only a few sentences from Mr. Stearns's first installment, but they indicate its tenor. He boasts of having been helped to his room in Weld by the Yard cop three times to his memory, leaving us to guess how many times he did not remember it, while "the elms went up like rockets to the stars." By his own standards he would thereby be removed from any sort of suspicion. But we, nevertheless, suspect that he is not a typical Harvard man and that his generalities on Harvard's man and that his generalities on Harvard's failures are imaginary word pictures. Not that Harvard is not ready to be criticized for her good; quite to the contrary. We only ask that criticism come from real, deep thought and from knowledge of the majority and not from individual notions. We are sorry that Mr. Stearns had to listen to "bar-room or pool-room gossip, given additional vigor by quotations from the classics." We wish now that someone who knows what undergraduate conversation and habits generally are would step forward and praise rather than confess and condemn.
CONFESSIONS OF A HARVARD MAN.
From Our Advertisers
A Friday Afternoon at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library.
Located close to Harvard Square on the Babcock Green Line, Balance Patch brings "social gaming" to Boston.
Leesa Sleep tells a story of entrepreneurship and philanthropy at Harvard Business School's 2017 Marketing Innovation Conference.
This article has been written in collaboration with the team at Church Hill Classics who provide diploma frames, certificate frames and varied other gifts for graduation.