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(Ed. Note--The Crimson does not necessarily endorse opinions expressed in printed communications. No attention will be paid to anonymous letters and only under special conditions, at the request of the writer, will names be withheld.)
To the Editor of the Crimson:
In the maze of philosophical, historical, and generally cultural studies which make up the Harvard curriculum, English F stands as one of the few courses whose practical value is obvious. This course, devoted to the art of public appealing, is of especial value to the man who expects to take an active place in the business and professional world. Here, with all the paraphernalia of phonographical recordings of his voice, actual dinners to test out the principles of good after dinner speaking, and instructors trained to detect flaws in the student's method of preparing a speech and in the technique of his delivery, a man is enabled in the short space of half a year, if not to make a perfect public speaker of himself, at least to rise above the mediocrity which is the lot of most men who have occasion to speak before an audience.
Unfortunately, however, the present course, being of only half a year's duration, leaves the would-be orator in a state of partial development, like an engine whose improperly adjusted cylinders permit it to function, but not to function to the best of its ability. Just at the time when the fundamentals have been fully comprehended and the student is prepared to go on to a study of the finer points of the art, the course comes to an end. It is my opinion, and I think that I reflect the opinion of most of the men in the course, that in order that future Rotarians and Kiwanians now at Harvard will not be forced to bow their heads in shame before the rhetorical onslaughts of their future fellow Rotarians and Kiwanians, English F be expanded to the status of a full course. Edward D. Hurley. Jr. '36.
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