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Eleanor Roosevelt visited East House at Radcliffe Friday night and answered a barrage of questions on topics ranging from nuclear testing to the morals of Vassar girls.
Often illustrating her points by personal anecdotes, Mrs. Roosevelt urged an attentive audience, packed into the Cabot Hall living room, to work actively for democracy.
"If we're going to be leaders, we have to know about the rest of the world," she said, praising the Peace Corps because it gives Americans the chance to learn, about the values and problems of other countries.
Asked about the value of student political demonstrations, Mrs. Roosevelt replied, "I think that for young people who cannot vote, to demonstrate is the only way they feel they can influence public opinion. But later it's important to think through the steps you want to take."
"I don't ever think we're doing enough in civil rights," Mrs. Roosevelt told one questioner. She praised the Administration for "using the Attorney General's office much more than ever before to get things done. The more we can hasten desegregation, the better it will be."
Asked if she favored birth control to free women for tasks other than childraising, Mrs. Roosevelt emphasized that "it is a creative job to have children and to bring them up to make a contribution to the world." Much more important than birth control, she said, is "providing women with ways to use their training without feeling they are neglecting their families."
Vassar President Blanding's remarks on the moral standards of college girls also came into the discussion. When one girl asked Mrs. Roosevelt if she had an opinion on the issue, Radcliffe's guest replied, "I don't." But, she qualified, "while I don't think I would have said it quite that way, in the long run it may be a good thing that Miss Blanding spoke up. It's god to force people to think about their standards."
The final performance of Heartbreak House will be given tonight at 8:30 p.m. at Agassiz. Tickets are on sale at the Coop and at the door.
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