Thursday, October 14, 2010

Good Moral Character & a Fireside Chat Friday @ 1pm

The college catalogue from 1846 described behaviors that were preferred among the student population: "The College is open to persons who desire to study in particular departments only. Such persons must give satisfactory evidence of good moral character, and possess such previous acquisitions in the branches they mean to pursue, as shall qualify them to study with some of the regular classes." A description of such character is not provided, neither are the means by which one should attain it.

A century and a half later, we have no such clause in the college catalog and yet it goes without question that rules and codes of behavior, or, even guidelines for moral character have been a part of the college's history as much as its traditions. Putting this story into visual and verbal form was the task put before students in my Curatorial Studies course. As I mentioned in an earlier post this semester, each fall students in ART 302 prepare an exhibition that is on display in the Cochenour Gallery around our campus celebration of Homecoming. The first exhibit was curated in 2005 and entitled “Faith Ablaze! The Chapel Fire of 1930.” This show recounted that tragic, chilly April morning as the building was lost to the smoke and flames. For the 2010 exhibition, students have been researching the rules and regulations of the college from the earliest College Catalogs of the mid-nineteenth century to the present day. This proved quite challenging because the topic for the exhibition is not entirely focused or well-documented, such as an historic structure or event. Nor is the focus on a specific population, such as alums from a certain dorm or major or club.

The show has been curated, installed, and is now on view in the LRC. Please join us on Friday from 12-2 in the Cochenour Gallery where students will be on hand to discuss their work. The students who prepared the exhibition include: Celisa Bowen, David Gardner, Bess McHone, Jacob Pankey, and Weezie Payton. We also had the help of an alum, Daniel Ware, class of 2010. While browsing the display case and installation of two dorm rooms, you'll be able to enjoy amazing dainty delights made by GC alum, Amanda Hervey. In addition, we'll convene a Fireside Chat at 1:00 with Doc Birdwhistell and a few other GC alums and friends, including Jane Hope Fields, Ann McCamy, Kyle Potter, Kitty Taylor, and Wallace and Judith Williams. All will share insight about rules and regulations. Topics include:

-Freshman beanies (see image at the head of this post)
-dorm life
-bust of J.J. Rucker -- remember it? seen it? stolen it?
-earliest rules
-the present "rules"
-rules as being good or harmful for students in college
Please join us!

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