Women Profs Protest Parody

Senior Faculty Members Send Letter to Law School Dean

The senior women professors in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences last week sent a letter to Law School dean Robert C. Clark, adding their voices to the protest of the Harvard Law Review parody of an article by Mary Joe Frug.

In the letter, 23 professors expressed their dismay with the law students' actions, and urged Clark to review the case and attempt to alter the ideological atmosphere on the law school campus.

The parody, called "He-Manifesto of Post-Mortem Legal Feminism," spoofed a paper written by Frug, a Bunting fellow who was murdered last spring.

The fact that Harvard Law Review staffers did not recognize the article's insensitivity "is as scathing a comment on the Law School's efforts in value education as it is the moral turpitude of the students involved," the letter reads.

The professors joined to write the letter because "the article was outrageous," Professor of Psychology Ellen Langer said yesterday.


"It's always not a bad idea to scream a little when these things go on, rather than to let them pass," said.

Gisela Striker, Lane professor of philosophyand of the classics.

"I was very glad to have an opportunity toexpress in the strongest terms my feelings aboutthe affair," Striker said.

Striker said she felt if was appropriate thatthe women senior faculty make a collectivestatement about the parody.

Professor of Romance Languages and LiteraturesAlice A. Jardine, who emphasized that her viewsmight not reflect those of her colleagues, saidshe wanted to express solidarity with women at thelaw School, and with everyone offended by the Frugparody.

Jardine said she supports "all of those at theLaw School who are attempting to change theatmosphere there."

A climate in which the Frug parody isconsidered funny does not exist at the Faculty ofArts and Sciences, said Professor of Romance andComparative Literatures Susan R. Suleiman.

'Past That Stage'

"It is not considered fine to make reallynasty, sexist remarks in FAS," Suleiman said. "Ithink we've gone past that stage."

Langer said the women senior faculty membershave taken few collective actions in the past.When they have joined forces, she said, they haveusually discussed campus women's issues.

Junior and senior women faculty members haveheld discussions about administration policiessuch as maternity leave, and about increasing thenumber of women on campus, Langer said.

And Striker said that while senior womenfaculty members are not an organized group, theymet with President Neil L. Rudenstine last year todiscuss women's issues.

The women scholars also meet occasionally forlunch, Suleiman said.

"It's a good thing that we have been meeting,even infrequently," Suleiman said.

The 23 scholars plan to meet again before theacademic year ends, Striker said