Scrutiny


A Gentlemen's Agreement

Across Harvard Square, lower-income residents and small businesses have for years existed in a constant competition for space — with large chains, with the University, and with the real estate investment firms frequently criticized for purchasing large swathes of land throughout the neighborhood. But taken collectively, Harvard’s property-owning final clubs exert a sizable influence on the Harvard Square real estate market. They too are players in the competition for space — and sometimes its rules aren’t necessarily fair.


Amid a Rapidly Changing Present, Can Chinatown Preserve Its Past?

Chinatown’s physical structures are deeply intertwined with its cultural significance: As gentrification razes row houses and storefronts, it also threatens the character of the community and its tight-knit, working-class core. Amid the conflict over what — and who — makes Chinatown valuable, activists work to preserve its history and guide its future, allowing the community’s influence to grow beyond its borders.


Inside the Conservative Media Outlet Feeding Harvard Students to Fox News

Campus Reform — a conservative media outlet that seeks to uncover "liberal bias" on college campuses — also often serves as a middleman that places college students on television networks like Fox News for short media segments. The articles and media segments that Campus Reform produces and facilitates then spread widely on social media — but only in certain circles. This system leads to a warped media narrative about college campuses in which the majority of students live in one reality, and a select few are deployed by a sprawling media empire to help create a divergent, parallel reality. When those two realities collide, rarely is it pretty.


To Do No Harm

In 2008, Eben Alexander, a former Harvard Medical School professor, entered a coma that would change the trajectory of his life forever.


Uncatalogued

Amid an ongoing lawsuit contesting the Peabody Museum’s possession of a series of daguerreotypes that depict two enslaved people, scholars and activists have focused their attention on the museum’s collection and acquisition practices. But the daguerreotypes central to the lawsuit were only discovered in the Peabody’s collection in 1976 — a discovery that raises questions about what other objects may languish uncatalogued and anonymous in the boxes, racks, and milk crates the museum secrets away.


Volume XXXI, Issue II

Dear Reader, It is mid-February, which means love is in the air. No matter your Valentine's Day plans, make sure to take some time to read FM's 2020 "Contemporary Romance" feature. RLL explores her love of the beloved food chain Waffle House. AKEC writes about the challenge of showing and accepting gestures of physical affection. And I grapple with my younger sister growing up. We also have a great mix of hard-hitting reporting and humorous takes to keep you entertained before your (romantic) evening. SSL spends an afternoon honing her thrusts and parries at a sword fighting workshop for women. MVE witnesses some incredible staff art at the Smith Campus Center. I profile Suraj Yengde, an inspiring Dalit intellectual and activist. And APK answers a question that has long stumped FM writers: What are sports? In our cover story for this week, MHM and GWO write about the history and the future of the artifacts of the Harvard Peabody Museum, parsing the museum's responsibility to repatriate and exhibit objects whose presence in their collection is inextricable from colonialism. We end with KKC's lovely endpaper, which turns the scrumptious process of gnawing on chicken feet into a thoughtful investigation of the difficulties of pinpointing "Chinese-America." Curious? Dare I say, titillated? Begin a life-long affair with FM, and read on! MNW


Peabody staff

Director Reynolds and the Peabody Staff in 1930 during the peak collection era of the Peabody. © Museum Collection. Courtesy of the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, Harvard University, PM2004.1.324.38


A.D. Facade

The A.D. Club stands at the corner of Mass. Ave. and Plympton St.


The Alimentary Rules of Building a Cookbook Collection

Though many initially disputed the cookbook collection’s academic merits, it now seems emblematic of the way the academy has changed in recent decades; it is a testament to many fields’ fights for legitimacy.


Fred H. Humphreys

Fred H. Humphreys and his brother Paul owned and operated the music store Briggs & Briggs until it was forced to close a year after being priced out of its 1270 Mass Ave. storefront in 1999.


Who Does the Celebration of Scholarships Celebrate?

First generation and lower-income students benefit enormously from financial aid; they are also the only students asked to attend the Celebration of Scholarships and navigate the potentially uncomfortable social situations within.


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