'Indifference Again'

From the Closet

There has lately been much discussion in student circles about that characteristic of Harvard undergraduates which we choose to call "indifference,"--a term which is often used for laziness in very much the same way as, in the circles of outer darkness, "financial irregularity" is used for fraud. This indifference--to keep to the more general term--is usually supposed to result from a precocious and unerring insight into the realities of things, and a moral and intellectual nature of too high a "tone" to take any interest in the vulgar and short-sighted struggles of the external world... It is also true that, we have some acquaintance with that life of polished dissipation and fruitless travel which we are pleased to call "the world," our estimate of the real world, as we argue from a part to the whole, may naturally be of peculiarly fallacious and depreciative character. Briefly, are we not indifferent from superficial thought, and superficial from desultory attention, divided energy, want of definite purpose, and laziness. A laziness fostered, it is true, by a little dilettante culture, and a great deal of affected disapproval of everything which is now done or thought by ourselves or others. --From the CRIMSON of November 12, 1875