« May 2005 | Main | July 2005 »

June 2005 Archives

June 1, 2005

Divine day


Four dollars bought grilled hot dogs, eggplant, potato salad, ice cream sundaes, beer, and live bluegrass music at the Divinity School’s last Wednesday community luncheon of the year. Usually a vegetarian meal including an academic speaker in Swift Common Room, today’s cookout in the Swift Hall courtyard was less brainy, more tasty. While the Whisky Hollow Bluegrass Band played Johnny Cash tunes and other standards, Div School students manned the grills and sold self-made cookbooks to raise money for new kitchen equipment. Blessed with a sunny, 70-degree day, guests at five picnic tables conversed, applauded each song, and didn’t hesitate to grab seconds before hitting the sundae bar.


Photos: The barbeque's on (top), and the band is playing (bottom).

June 3, 2005

Trolley along


Looping around campus since 8:30 a.m. Friday, trolley driver Emanuel has memorized the route well before lunchtime. “I don’t even have to think about it,” he says. Transporting U of C reunion attendees from Alumni House to various event locations, he brakes for maroon and white balloons and “trolley stop” signs. Eighty-year-old Ruth Beiersdorf, AM’65, boards on her way back to Alumni House from the SSA, where she earned her degree. “I was here in ’45,” says Beiersdorf, who flew in from Colorado. “Then I got married and came back to finish in ’65.” When she gets off, Jeff, AB’55, and Beverly Steinberg climb on. They think the trolley is a formal tour, but when they learn it’s more for transportation than information they stay put, watching the campus as they browse their brochures and make their pick for Saturday’s Uncommon Core lecture—Developing Fundamental Scientific Concepts: Illustrations from Thermodynamics by Stuart Rice.

After lunch traffic picks up. Five graduates and spouses from the late 40s and early 50s marvel at the new GSB and the Ratner Athletics Center. “The pool’s in there?” one man exclaims. A couple with two kids, ages 5 and 7, ride to the BSLC to board another trolley, where Hank Webber, University VP of community and government affairs, will guide a Hyde Park tour of recent growth and other neighborhood changes. Then they’ll return for a dinosaur talk by Paul Sereno.

Soon the trolley is full. Veronica Drake, AB’85, talks with another member of her class whom she didn’t know during school. Woodward Court is gone, she says, but it was probably time for something new. True, the man agrees. Jimmy’s is still here, they note. The Ida Noyes painting was stolen. Remember Kuviasungnerk. On they talk as Emanuel drives around campus, evoking 20-year-old memories with each turn.


Photos: Emanuel's trolley (top); Reunion riders (bottom).

June 6, 2005

Brave hearts

To the skirl of bagpipes and the whirl of cottonwood seeds, Chicago alumni paraded into Rockefeller Chapel Saturday morning, behind maroon and white banners that heralded their College class year or divisional affiliation. Bringing up the rear were the day’s special guests: winners of the Alumni Association’s 2005 Alumni Awards.

Part of Alumni Weekend activities that brought more than 2,500 alums and guests back to campus, the convocation featured an address by Alumni Medalist David Broder, AB’47, AM’51, national political correspondent for the Washington Post.

Invoking Robert Maynard Hutchins and his belief in freedom as essential to the human spirit, Broder—who, like his wife, Ann C. Broder, AB’48, AM’51, is a Hutchins College grad—told his Rockefeller audience, “The liberal mind is an open mind—not devoid of values, but one that is never too sure of how those values can be achieved in a particular age.” Staying open to other approaches and views, he said, is the only way to win “the battle against closed minds,” a battle in which “cynics disarm themselves.” It is “far better,” he ended in Hutchins-echoing exhortation, “to cling to your faith in freedom.”


convo-Broder4_thumb.jpg convo-Rice and Lorna_thumb.jpg convo-entering Rock_thumb. .jpg

Photos (from left to right): Alumni Medalist David Broder, AB’48, AM’51; Stuart Rice, the Frank P. Hixon distinguished service professor emeritus in chemistry, and University Marshal Lorna Straus, SM’60, PhD’62, former Dean of Students in the College, received Norman Maclean Faculty Award for their contributions to the student experience on campus; Saturday was a banner day for winners of the 2005 Alumni Awards.

Photos by Dan Dry.

June 8, 2005

Fair weather


Throngs of fairgoers descended on Hyde Park last weekend for the 58th annual 57th Street Art Fair. While on Saturday a mid-afternoon storm derailed activities for a spell, temperatures in the high 80s kept the crowds coming. Artists new to the fair set up shop on William H. Ray School grounds, and rows of identical white tents lined 57th Street, Kimbark Avenue, and 56th Street, housing more than 250 craftsmen and their wares: jewelry, wooden utensils, watercolors, stained glass, and photographs of mannequins and ballparks. A life-sized sculpture of a jester attracted many children in attendance.

Neighbors soaked up the sights and sounds from porches and stoops, and lines snaked from the Medici bakery and restaurant. Drawing even more interest were the food tents located on the east side of the William H. Ray School grounds, enticing passersby with ribs, Polish sausages, pad thai, and egg rolls. Lemonade and ice cream offered a respite from the June heat.

John Fitzgerald

June 10, 2005

King for a day

When a king comes to town, even VIPs pay attention. So it was Thursday when Jordan's King Abdullah II arrived to inaugurate a Harris School lecture series in his name. (Click here for Abdullah's remarks.) University President Don M. Randel, Harris School Dean Susan E. Mayer, and Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley were all in attendance.

For security, the Oriental Institute shut down at 11 a.m. for the king's 11:30 address in the near-capacity auditorium. Guests were wanded as they entered—and became a captive audience until the event was over. What struck photographer Dan Dry, who had all-access clearance, was seeing "the Secret Service, the Jordanian police, the Chicago PD, and the U of C Police all working together."


king19_thumb.jpg king23_thumb.jpg king33_thumb.jpg king38_thumb.jpg

Photos (from left to right): King Abdullah II addresses the OI crowd; "I was educated in Boston," Abdullah tells Mayor Daley and President Randel; Board of Trustees Chair James Crown presents Abdullah with a proclamation; Secret Service keep the area secure.

Photos by Dan Dry.

June 13, 2005

How many MBAs does it take to fill a quad?

Convocation weekend concluded Sunday as the Graduate School of Business dispensed degrees to some 650 students. In my role as journalist, I arrived at Harper Quadrangle early, armed with tape recorder and notepad. But this was not to be an objective report. One MBA had this editor’s extra attention: my fiancé. And so I found myself jockeying unashamedly for the perfect picture—of him—as the procession drew near.

The only class to spend time at both the old and new Hyde Park quarters, the festivities made the most of the diverse locations. First against Harper’s Gothic backdrop, Harry Davis, the Roger L. & Rachel M. Goetz distinguished service professor of creative management, spoke on “Being Silly, Seriously,” and Credit Suisse First Boston Chief Executive Officer Brady Dougan, AB’81, MBA’82, on corporate leadership. Then, after each graduate’s name had its due, family and friends strolled over to the GSB’s Woodlawn Avenue digs for a swanky reception complete with champagne and appetizers in martini glasses.

I toasted my fiancé—and the University where I have worked since November 2003. We leave Chicago July 1 for Washington, D.C., with memories and MBA in tow.


GSB15_thumb.jpg GSB27_thumb.jpg GSB51_thumb.jpg

Photos (from left to right): Almost-MBAs listen to the convocation speakers; Dean Ted Snyder, AM'78, PhD'84, shakes The Fiance's hand; the swanky post-ceremony reception.

Photos by Dan Dry.

June 15, 2005

On the midway, in medias res

For the final production of its 50th anniversary year, Court Theatre chose a play that’s approaching its own half-century mark: Samuel Beckett’s Endgame premiered in 1957 at London’s Royal Court Theatre, performed in French as Fin de partie.

Set in a drab, half-underground room that shelters four characters—blind, wheelchair-bound Hamm; his servant Clove; and Hamm’s ancient father and mother, Nagg and Nell, who live, per Beckett’s directions, in garbage cans—Endgame has become synonymous with existential, Cold War despair. The current production, directed by Christopher Bayes, captures the disillusion while living up to its Court billing as “A Carnival of Laughter and Despair.”

Videotaped roller-coasters, a Ferris wheel’s circling lights, and tent-like canvas hangings set the midway mood. And, as Bayes plays up Beckett’s music-hall influences, Hamm (Allen Gilmore) performs as a vaudeville ham, Clove (Joe Faust) is his slapstick sidekick, and Nagg (Maury Cooper) and Nell (Roslyn Alexander) do burlesque bits.

After all, as Nell tells Nag, “Nothing is funnier than unhappiness.” But Nell’s next line rings even truer as the play moves toward its certain, uncertain conclusion: “Yes, yes, it's the most comical thing in the world. And we laugh, we laugh, with a will, in the beginning. But it's always the same thing. Yes, it's like the funny story we have heard too often, we still find it funny, but we don't laugh any more.”

At the end of Court’s Endgame, which runs through June 26, neither is the audience laughing any more.


1_thumb.jpg 2_thumb.jpg 5_thumb.jpg

Photos (from left to right): Joe Foust as Clov and Allen Gilmore as Hamm; Roslyn Alexander as Nell and Joe Foust as Clov; Maury Cooper as Nagg and Roslyn Alexander as Nell.

Photos by Michael Brosilow

June 17, 2005

Bloomsday, yes


On Michigan Avenue near Adams yesterday afternoon, soaking up the ample sunlight, a stroller could bask unaware that this was a red-letter day for fans of modernist literature and friends of Ireland alike. Take an elevator up 22 floors to the Cliff Dwellers club, however, and there was no mistaking the festiveness and importance of June 16th. It was Bloomsday, of course—the day of both James Joyce’s first date with his future wife Nora Barnacle and the day his landmark novel Ulysses takes place, both in 1904. At Cliff Dwellers, as in cities the world over, dedicated Joyceans gathered “to read from and rejoice in this comic masterpiece,” in the words of emcee Steve Diedrich, whose popular Newberry Library course on the novel had several appreciative alumni in the audience.

Besides Diedrich, last night’s readers included Irish Consul General Charles Sheehan, the explosively funny actor and two-time Jeff Award winner Lawrence McCauley, and three University faculty and staff members. Before reading the novel’s first scene, Sheehan spoke about Joyce’s connections to the United States and Chicago. Though he never visited the U.S., Sheehan noted, Joyce deeply appreciated his supporters here, especially Judge John M. Woolsey, who lifted the ban on the book in 1933. Sheehan read from Woolsey’s decision, and when he finished with “Ulysses may, therefore, be admitted into the United States,” the room erupted in cheers.

The three readers with University ties are Chicago Bloomsday veterans. Claudia Traudt, AM'81, who teaches Ulysses in the Graham School’s Basic Program, set the crowd by turns guffawing and blushing with her ripe, ribald performance of the young seductress Gerty MacDowell. Cardiology professor Rory Childers, grandson of an Irish martyr and son of an Irish president, was the very voice of authenticity reading from the novel's “Ithaca” section. And development staff member Mary Nell Murphy brought the event to a poignant close with a strikingly musical, delicate Molly Bloom. Murphy emphasized the sweetness of the novel’s famous, breathless last pages, while not missing the humor: “…and how he kissed me under the Moorish wall and I thought well as well him as another and then I asked him with my eyes to ask again yes and then he asked me would I yes to say yes my mountain flower and first I put my arms around him yes and drew him down to me so he could feel my breasts all perfume yes and his heart was going like mad and yes I said yes I will Yes.”

Laura Demanski

Photos: Development staff member Mary Nell Murphy and writer/actor Kevin Grandfield; Graham School Ulysses teacher Claudia Traudt.

June 20, 2005

As the deans turn

The University will have some familiar faces in its top academic ranks for the foreseeable future.

The Divinity School’s Richard Rosengarten, AM’88, PhD’94, and Graduate School of Business’s Edward Snyder, AM’78, PhD'84, have both been appointed to second five-year terms, effective July 1. Rosengarten is working on three books. During his previous tenure, the Div School created the Chicago Forum on Pedagogy and the Study of Religion, a three-year forum of plenary talks, panel discussions, and graduate-student workshops. Snyder, the George Pratt Shultz professor of economics, also has kept busy, overseeing the GSB’s move to its new Hyde Park quarters. In addition to teaching and coediting the Journal of Law & Economics, he is a member of the energy and industrial group’s advisory board at Accenture and chairman of Huron Consulting Group’s academic council.

Across the Midway, Jeanne Marsh returns as dean of the School of Social Service Administration—she held the position from 1988 to 1998 and served as acting dean this past year. Marsh, the George Herbert Jones professor in the SSA, is a leading expert on developing and evaluating social services for children and families.


rosengarten_thumb.jpg 050613.snyder_thumb.jpg 050613.marsh_thumb.jpg

Photos (from left to right): Rosengarten, Snyder, and Marsh.

June 22, 2005

Feats of clay

Standing before a glass case of rough, beige-colored bowls circa 7000 BC, Oriental Institute museum director Geoff Emberling begins his talk. “Early ceramic vessels were used for cooking grains.” Their introduction, he tells about 20 visitors on a tour of Chicago-area ceramics, correlates with agriculture’s growth and created “a human health disaster.” When people began eating “starchy, sugary grains,” he says, their teeth rotted. Over time, with less use, human teeth became smaller.

Emberling, over six feet tall with dark curly hair, talks and laughs with the group, mostly older women, as he ushers them to the next case—Mesopotamian pottery from 7000–3000 BC. The bowls and sherds here display painted patterns; artisans had begun employing a slow potter’s wheel, creating smoother, thinner vessels and decorating them with concentric circles. Next up: bevel-rimmed bowls, marked by knuckle and thumbprints that, Emberling says, “give you an instant connection to the past.” Found by the thousands, these 3500–2900 BC dishes “were used basically as paper plates” to feed the king’s many workers.

Traveling from Mesopotamia to the Mediterranean coast, the group views finds from Anatolia, or ancient Turkey. It’s “a very different kind of pottery,” Emberling notes, “handmade, red-burnished pottery.” Produced from 3000–1000 BC, the vessels feature spouts, handles, and “really beautiful forms.” Around 1000 BC, he says, pointing to pieces more brown than red, the color and shapes changed. A new people had come to the region—the Phrygians, known for King Midas, had migrated from the Balkans.

In the Persian gallery Emberling emphasizes the Iranian tradition. Dating to around 4000 BC, the thin, hand-made bowls and jugs are elaborately painted with abstract images of mountain goats or dancing figures. People had constructed kilns capable of firing at extremely hot temperatures. “The introduction of metallurgy just before this,” Emberling notes, “led to massive deforestation” as humans collected firewood. The land had been filled with trees but “soon got as barren as it is today.”

The OI tour finished, the group sets off to see the Smart Museum’s “Centers and Edges” exhibit, the Geophysical Sciences building’s Ruth Duckworth mural, and the Chicago Cultural Center’s Duckworth exhibit. “I learned so much,” gushes one woman, smiling at Emberling. “Art on the Move” director Joan Arenberg says, “Geoff has set the bar very high for today.”


IMG_4390_thumb.jpg IMG_4398_thumb.jpg IMG_4401_thumb.jpg

Photos (from left to right): Early glazed Mesopotamian pottery; Emberling shows off Iranian pottery; Emberling talks with visitors after the tour.

June 24, 2005

The Pearl was their oyster

The Little Black Pearl, sitting on an innocuous 47th Street corner, is an oasis of silence and cool air on a hot June day. The small, open gallery’s high ceilings and bright, echoey spaces complement Research and Development, a busy collection of pieces from this year’s crop of ten graduating MFA students.

Lined up to greet visitors are Michael Dinges’s engravings: everyday objects including a bucket and a PVC pipe, scratched over with political messages and precise drawings of iconic animals. Just beyond hovers Julia Oldham’s video installation, three televisions broadcasting time-lapse loops of the artist dancing and flapping to imitate a bee. Around the corner, Caroline Mak’s webs of unstrung crochet poke through sheetrock and wind around a garden hose, while across the way John Preus’s Narrative Generation System 1: Homezwarethartiz uses a desk fan to animate a hair ball and toy tractor. A discreet video camera projects passing images on a television, bringing the observer into the artwork.

Contributors also include Kate Baird, Ben King, Merry-Beth Noble, Tara Strickstein, Lindsey Walton, and David Wolf, AB’00. The exhibit closes Saturday with a 2:30 artists’ gallery talk.


mfa_8thumb.jpg mfa_3thumb.jpg mfa_5thumb.jpg

Photos (from left to right): Untitled by Caroline Mak; Rotations by Julia Oldham; Untitled, part of the Trench Art collection, by Michael Dinges.

Photos by Dan Dry.

June 27, 2005

Obama on call


Five television cameras and half a dozen reporters lined up in the Comer Children's Hospital lobby this morning to hear Illinois' junior senator, Barack Obama, promote federal legislation aimed at improving health information technology. Obama joined GOP Senator Bill Frist and Democratic Senator Hillary Clinton in introducing the bill June 16.

"Too much health care is still provided by pen and paper," said Obama, a former Law School lecturer, contributing to medical errors that kill up to 98,000 Americans each year. The proposed legislation would provide grants for local health-care providers to computerize medical records, and it would establish a national coordinator of health information technology to develop standards and make sure records are secure.

Obama listened while U of C officials touted the Hospitals' own technology plans. Hospitals CIO Eric Yablonka said Chicago already has begun a $70 million technology update. Next assistant professor of medicine Alex Lickerman, AB'88, MD'92, praised the legislation, noting that electronic medical records help "patient care keep up with scientific advancement," allow physicians to see what patients' other doctors have prescribed or diagnosed, and improve clinical research by keeping information in a database.

After Obama noted, for full disclosure's sake, that his wife works at the Hospitals (she's vice president for community affairs) and his two daughters were born there, he opened it up for questions. How, one reporter asked, would the legislation protect patient privacy? Does it provide enough money, another wondered, to do the job? Then, because they had the senator's attention, the journalists quizzed him on other news of the day: a potential new Supreme Court nominee, the Ten Commandments decision handed down this morning, the war in Iraq, and a state video-interrogation law.


Photos: Obama drew several local media outlets (top); Obama stands by as assistant professor of medicine Alex Lickerman hails electronic medical records (bottom).

June 29, 2005

Low-top culture


Got to get your hands on a copy of Kappa Alpha Theta’s 1999 sorority portrait, “including approximately 30 girls?” A trip to uchi.marketplace, where students buy and sell a slew of stuff, is in order. Perhaps you’ve got two Jimmy Buffett concert tickets you’d like to be rid of. Voila! Adrian on Marketplace is “willing to pay a lot” to catch “Cheeseburger in Paradise” at Wrigley Field in September.

Marketplace, “the product of insomnia,” was first introduced to the University by an undergraduate night owl in August 1999. In 2001 Marketplace became a joint venture between Student Government and Devon Ryan, AB’02, according to the site, which permits anyone with a University e-mail address to post wares.

Over the past six years Marketplace has grown to include hundreds of listings. Its users also have matured. One current seller has posted several pairs of low-top Converse All-Stars “from back when [he] was a hipster.” He’ll only relinquish his black, orange, red, aquamarine, brown, and pink low-tops, however, to a “worthy owner.”

Meredith Meyer, '06

Photo: This new Dunlop squash racquet has been for sale on Marketplace since June 26. The posting has been viewed 53 times by potential buyers.

Photos of the Week: June 2005 (Postcards from the Quads)

Robie House 6/29

Continue reading "Photos of the Week: June 2005 (Postcards from the Quads)" »

About June 2005

This page contains all entries posted to UChiBLOGo in June 2005. They are listed from oldest to newest.

May 2005 is the previous archive.

July 2005 is the next archive.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

Powered by
Movable Type 3.31