Provincialism

THE MAIL

To the Editors of The Crimson:

The account, by a Jeffrey Zucker, of a women's ice hockey game with Colby in Waterville, Maine (2/23/83) reflects a point of view I like to call "urban provincialism." I refer to his lead: "There is not much going on in Waterville, Maine, this time of year. The most exciting show to hit town in days rolled through yesterday And that was the Harvard women's ice hockey team."

Mr. Zucker overly flatters himself and demonstrates a conceit that does not conform to the facts.

There is a lot going on in Waterville, Maine, and at Colby and the highlight is not Harvard's ice hockey team "rolling in" or whatever it does. A scanning of a calendar of events at Colby would indicate that Mr. Zucker either was not here to cover the game, which Colby won. 4-1, or he did not bother to venture outside of the hockey rink. For example, recent events at Colby were a panel discussion on the humanities and scientific implications of genetic engineering: a visit by Garry Wills as writer-in-residence a student production of "The Trojan Women," by Euripides; a lecture on grass-roots organizing of political action; a celebration of Black History Month including soul-food night and a lecture on the art of the Benin Kingdom; the beginning of a series of exhibits, lectures and films on abstract art, "The Shock of the New"; winter carnival with Mardi Gras as the theme; in addition to a variety of movies, concerts and recreational and varsity sports, including, yes, a women's ice hockey game with Harvard. There is much to do at Colby provided there is the awareness of surroundings and the initiative to take advantage of a veritable groaning board of stimulating and enlightening activities.

Perhaps being used to the city lights of Boston, Mr. Zucker would not fit into the Colby environment, where you cannot rely on being spoon fed and having your hands held while being shown. One of the advantages of colleges like Colby, located on the outer reaches of the empire, if you will, is that students, faculty and staff become resourceful and are encouraged to get involved in the arts, sports, and the intellectual life of the college.

Consequently, it is the students, faculty and staff who produce and direct plays, choreograph, dances, arrange for art exhibits, visiting lectures, performers and scholars, and are involved in athletics. There is no reliance on letting others do it for them.

So the next time the Harvard women's ice hockey team and Mr. Zucker "roll in," please have them get in touch with me so I can arrange for their participating in and experiencing the great range of activities and events that do occur at Colby. It is my obligation to help stamp out this affliction known as "urban provincialism" complicated by conceit and dreary condescension. Peter Kingsley   Director, Public Affairs, Colby College