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Four Professors Cancel Lectures In Protest of 'Misuse of Science'

By Mark W. Oberle

Four Harvard scientists have decided to scrap their regular course lectures on March 4 in sympathy with a nationwide research stoppage protesting the misuse of science.

Gerald Holton, professor of Physics, Arthur K. Solomon, associate professor of Biophysics, Richard A. McCray, assistant professor of Astronomy, and David J. Jhirad, teaching fellow in Astronomy, will replace their regular technical material next Tuesday with discussions of the relationship of science to society. Solomon's decision came in response to a petition signed by half the students present at Biology 119's last lecture.

Eleven Courses

Science students in 11 other courses have also circulated petitions requesting the lectures to hold similar discussions on March 4.

The petitions claimed that "science is utilized by military and industrial interests whose goals at this time are incompatible with the benefit of society as a whole," and that society's use of science should be an "appropriate topic for discussion in classes alongside more traditional technical material."

Rational Science

Initiated by M.I.T. graduate students, the protest is being honored at M.I.T., Yale, Cornell, and 30 other universities. According to William Haseltine, graduate student in biology, coordinating the March 4th effort here, the one-day research stoppage and protest was designed not only to focus attention on military use of science but also to point out a need for a "more rational basis for the development of science."

Large amounts of research funds "are being spent in the interest of international competition and warfare," said Haseltine, and these funds should be channeled toward social rather than military ends.

At M.I.T. the protest also challenges the University's policy of granting academic credit for ROTC courses, classified doctoral theses, and undergraduate research for military contractors. The research stoppage will also protest $46-million worth of classified research at M.I.T.'s associate laboratories.

Professors from Harvard, M.I.T. and other universities will hold open panel discussions at M.I.T. on March 4 to discuss the issues raised by the research stoppage.

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