Resignations Of Professors Stir Brandeis
Emotion and interest over the recent resignations of two Brandeis professors have increased noticeably at the Waltham university during the past week.
A large portrait of president Abram L. Sachar has been smeared with ink and obscenities have been scrawled on the Ullman Amphitheatre: the Brandeis faculty, meeting yesterday to discuss general questions of academic freedom proceeding from the resignations, was unable to decide on any definitive action and will meet again today.
Sachar had reprimanded assistant professor Kathleen Gough Aberle for public statements she made at the height of the Cuban crisis. Mrs. Aberle had expressed the hope that Cuba would defeat the U.S. in a limited war. After Sachar's reprimand, Mrs. Aberle and her husband, formerly the chairman of the Brandeis anthropology department, resigned.
According to one report, the faculty's discussion yesterday covered several aspects of academic freedom and the authority of the president; it was further reported that at one stage of the proceedings, Sachar was asked to leave the meeting after he showed an intent to stay while he was being discussed.
The Brandeis student council has condemned the ink splattering and writing of obscenities. "If the students responsible are not found," a spokesman declared, "then the council will pay to repair the damages."
Sachar expressed astonishment last night at the accusations of infringement of academic freedom, in the light of Brandeis' reputation for educational liberality.
The censure of Mrs. Aberle, he said, came because "on an important day for the U.S., she violated the tradition of faculty dignity and went over into a language not becoming a professor."
In his original reprimand, Sachar also called attention to the "dangerous, reckless and undisciplined manner" of her talk. The Aberles will remain at Brandeis until the end of the current school year.