Anthropology Professor Peggy Sanday's new book is not just a description of fraternity rituals, but an attempt to end white male fraternities' domination of the University campus, she said this week. Sanday said she will have failed her goal in writing Fraternity Gang Rape: Sex, Privilege and Brotherhood on Campus if every fraternity has not been removed from Locust Walk 10 years from now. In the book, Sanday concluded that many men in fraternities use sexual aggression to dominate women. She described violent, often grotesque induction ceremonies in University fraternities -- rituals which she said promote the idea of sexual dominance. In a Chronicle of Higher Education article this week, Sanday said that the monopoly on "prime residential property" -- namely Locust Walk -- by white, upper-class males illustrates the privileged status of fraternities at the University. The anthropology professor, who began researching her book in 1983 after an alleged gang rape at the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity house, said last night that she believes every student who wants to live on Locust Walk should meet the standards for diversity, pursuit of knowledge and international understanding set by the University and President Sheldon Hackney. And those who do not illustrate these characteristics -- namely fraternities, Sanday said -- should not be allowed to live in the heart of campus. Eric Newman, assistant director of the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Affairs, said yesterday that although University fraternities have had problems in the past with the issues described in Sanday's book, their system has changed over the last several years. Removing fraternities from the Walk is not the way to solve these problems, he said. "As an office, we recognize these problems exist and we are trying to find effective solutions," Newman said. But Sanday said last night that she has not seen any change in the fraternity system since she began her research. "Some of the abuses that I describe in the book happened as late as fall of 1989," Sanday said. "I don't see a whole lot of evidence of change." Sanday said she was disappointed by Hackney's announcement that no fraternity will be moved from the Walk as the University attempts to house a more diverse group of students there. "You can't diversify the Walk without removing the fraternities," Sanday said. Kim Morrisson, vice provost for University life and co-chairperson of the Locust Walk Task Force -- the committee charged with finding ways to diversify the Walk -- said yesterday that achieving diversity will require some creativity. The committee will not remove current residences, she said. "To me, diversity is a concept embodied by inclusion rather than exclusion," Morrisson said.Comments powered by Disqus
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