BLACKS AT HARVARD
To the Editors of The Crimson:
I read with great interest your two articles in the Crimson (Wed., Oct. 23) on Harvard racial relations and would very much like to comment on the subject. In particular, I would like to correct the impression that it is my view that the shared rooming and eating among black students is "the natural thing to do, it always has been that way."
In my discussion with Mr. Butter, I stressed two factory: 1) that the social paradigm of black life was really a quest for a familiar social existence which I understood but regretted since in my view racial integration produces a richer and more varied life. In particular, such integration contains the possibility that in most situations one can forget that one is black or white. 2) The core of my argument was that black students had to strike a balance between three elements: a sense of respect for their racial and cultural heritage, broad participation in the social, cultural, and intellectual mainstream at Harvard, and adherence to the highest academic standards at the College.
I agree with Mr. McGee that the black community is less monolithic and regimented today and do sense a movement toward more integration between blacks and whites.
I appreciate The Crimson's initiation of this discussion, and I am sure debate, and hope that from it we can reach new understandings about the value of racial integration in the College. Archie C. Epps Dean of Students