Saturday, February 27, 2016

HARVARD: House "Masters" Now "Faculty Deans"

How now, fair Juliet? Is't but the name?
Or would this worm dig just as deep,
Its colors tamed? Yet sticks the shame,
Your kin shall hate. For thee–I weep. 
Harvard has stopped calling heads of houses "masters" because of the association of the word with the master-slave relationship.

They will now be called "faculty deans".
The Harvard Crimson on December 2 last year reported that a new name for house masters was in the offing:
Administrators now must choose a title to replace the term “master.” Princeton recently renamed its residential college master position to “head of the college”[...]
The masters of Harvard's Mather House on their website recently asked their students to call them by a different name, "chief executive officers" or CEOs.  The Crimson says:
That descriptor has since been removed from the site, but in an email [the House CEO] affirmed his discomfort with the “master” title. He has dropped the term from his position while waiting to form “a consensus for a new inclusive title,” he said. “I understand the important historical roots of the title ‘Master’ at Oxford and Harvard, but I am sensitive to the context of the Houses today, and the issues of race which for many years have made me uncomfortable with the title,” [he] wrote, adding that the alternative title of CEO “at least describes part of our job” but “is probably incomplete and leaves out the emphasis of creating a safe and supportive community."
Through a medium I contacted C. P. Snow about renaming his book, The Masters. He begged me to urge his publishers, if they ever do a new edition, not to rename his book. "Tell them," he said to me earnestly, "'Enough is enough'." Then his wispy spirit was sucked back into the mist of eternity.

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