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Women and the Dean


Associate Dean Watson handed the Council a new set of rules on Radcliffe Women in Harvard organizations last week. These regulations, product of the Faculty Committee on Student Activities, are opposed to measures which a joint Harvard-Radcliffe group proposed earlier this term. While the joint committee recommended only that there should be no more than 20 women in a college organization, Dean Watson listed three restrictions. He proposed that women be admitted to College organizations only when: 1) the group is departmental (Chemistry Club), or social (Drama Clubs); 2) these is no counterpart at Radcliffe, and 3) there is specific approval by both College and Radcliffe Deans.

These restrictions are arbitrary, vague, and unfair. The distinction between organizations allowed and those not allowed dual memberships exists only in the minds of the Faculty Committee, which never defined what "social" means. And to give the Deans discretion to define these limits, as these rules would, is to severely destrict the right of undergraduate organizations. Organizations should have only to gange their chances of being chartered to specific requirements, never to subjective official feelings.

Even had the Faculty Committee been able adequately to define groups entitled to bi-sexual membership, any rule based on the definition would have been a bad one. A College group should be able to have whomsoever it pleases among its members so long as its has 50 percent among is members to Harvard men to keep its Harvard name. Neither the College nor Radcliffe need fear domination of its undergraduate groups by members of the other sex; no organization would be forced to admit people it did not want. Surely students in groups at Harvard and Radcliffe are nature enough to know whether they are being dominated or not and when to form their own organizations.

Neither proposed set of rules--the Dean's nor the joint-committee's--is necessary to ordering and protecting undergraduate activities. Either would positively harm the freedom of undergraduates.

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