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Freshmen to Publish Guide to Houses Discussing Images, Women's Feelings


The Freshman Council will publish a guide to Harvard and Radcliffe Houses in two weeks to aid freshmen making housing choices for next year.

The guide will include information on rooming arrangements, dining rooms, libraries, and distinctive activities and facilities, Don A. Nicholson '76, vice president of Freshman Council and organizer of the House-guide committee, said yesterday.

The guide will present opinions of House members concerning Masters, senior tutors, academic counseling, and the house image.

A new section this year will survey women's activities, opinions, and the general attitude toward women in each house.

Nicholson said that women, "not us male chauvinists," wrote the women's section, and that an effort was made to talk to female members of each House to solicit information for this.

Women's attitudes range from "contented" at Winthrop to "uncomfortable" at Leverett, where there is a 9:1 ration of men to women, the guide states. Leverett women said they felt pressure to conform to traditional female roles and indicated there was some feeling that women were given preference in room selection.

Kirkland women, numbering 22 out of 300 residents, said that at first they had been self-conscious, especially in the dining room. However, the women said that "the men, many of whom are 'Jocks', are extraordinarily nice." Few of the Houses have women's groups or ables with exceptions being Lowell, Mather and North Houses.

Image descriptions concentrate primarily on "jock influence" and musical tastes. Eliot rated "quasi-jock," Winthrop "arm-chair jock", while Adams scored "non-jock, honors majors, with more cosmopolitan interests."

Kirkland, Dunster and North House were noted for musical interest.

Unique activities and facilities of the Houses encompass a wide variety of fields, including workshops in photography, carpentry, and auto mechanics. Also there is a sparsely equipped weight room at South House, a Gourmet Society led by Mrs. Von Stade in her kitchen at Mather, jazz jams and auctions.

Information for the guide was gathered from questionnaires sent to each House Committee, visits to House Committee meetings, and informal conversations with residents in the dining halls.

The report notes the personality and student rapport of each House Master. Highlights include the approachability and intense loyalty of F. Skiddy von Stade '38, Master of Mather House.

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