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At least one segment of the University has frankly admitted that co-education, no matter how it is talked about, does not and should not belong here. Memorial Church divines have decreed that the Choir, whose all-male history survived as long as Radcliffe was kept on the other side of Garden Street, shall return to its pre-war status by next fall. Two possible reasons for the decision offer themselves. First, a chorus of men's voices is more musically suitable to religious services. Second, a University which proclaims itself a male institution could not both sponsor a mixed choir and be consistent.
Although some prestige might attach itself to the uniqueness of a choir which ranges in the lower octaves, little of the praise will be reserved for the programming. Composers of church music have never been forced to leave sopranos out of their chorales in order that their genius might be reserved for masculine choirs in a men's college. The mixed group of 35 which has sung for Memorial Church services for three years has been able to bring with it a selection of religious music hitherto unheard in the Yard.
If restriction to an all-male chorus will mean once more that most of the great works of devotive music must be omitted, is it a sufficient reason that Harvard's official listing as a men's institution makes it a dishonesty to mix the sexes under the University name? In spite of their refusal to use openly the horriffic word, other University officials have welcomed, or at least accepted, a form of co-education. While others brace themselves to the brave new world where women exist, the church seeks refuge in a murky past.
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