The Amherst Student issue from September 28th, 1970
Written by Steve Klugman
“Amherst has since hired a Black Studies director/faculty representative to the Five-College Black Studies committee. Professor Asa Davis is black… The program of Black Studies that Davis envisions for Amherst is essentially ‘a systematic approach, conducted in an interdisciplinary manner, to the black experience.’ Afro-American studies, Prof. Davis believes, involve a particularly high degree of scholarly and diligent research.” Read second part here.
Written by Robert Steinbrook.
“A student member of the Admissions Committee and the Amherst members of the Five College Black Studies Executive Committee will be chosen by the Afro-American Society.”
The Amherst Student issue from October 12th, 1970
Written by Sandy Rosenberg.
“The three main goals of the [Afro-American] Society at this juncture the creation of a ‘sound and secure’ Black Studies department, the continuation and improvement of the Smith-Amherst Tutorial Program, and the growth of a more closely knit Five College Black Community.”
Written by Jean Fugett
“The appointment of Rick O’Daniel as an Assistant Dean [to the office of Admissions and Student Affairs] of Amherst College is another step in trying to achieve what President Plimpton call ‘the ideal situation at Amherst.’ Although Dean O’Daniel is black, Plimpton made it clear that it was not O’Daniel’s blackness that got him the job… O’Daniel would like to help students maintain a psychologically balanced relationship between the academic life at Amherst and the social obligation placed on the members of American society.”
The Amherst Student issue from June 3rd, 1971
Written by Wilburn Williams.
“We were very serious about the takeovers, though. For a week all of us in the Valley were one. For a short while we thrust through the seductive comfort of college life in the Valley and saw the painful reality of our position as Black people cut off from the sources of our Blackness. For a while we raged against having to speak white English in order to be understood by unhip professors, raged against the intensely private manner of white students who could not appreciate the psychological security of a community oriented lifestyle… It’s a shame that this year did not bring events that would allow us to achieve some grand and awesome apotheosis, to win a transcendent glory that might appease our vanity for all time to come.”
Written by Wayne Wormley.
“It’s been a year since I was last asked to write an article concerning black admissions at Amherst. Since that time, we have all obviously grown a year older and the problems that I talked about that existed in relation to Amherst and its black community have unfortunately become lost somewhere along the way. Because I feel that these issues are too important to be ignored and/or forgotten, I thought that this article might be as good a place as any to restate, inform or bring the Amherst community as a whole up-to-date on the state of the College from a different perspective.”
Written by Jean Fugett.
“As freshmen, a stereotyped role is expected of the blacks that follows us right up to graduation; that of spokesman for the black race. Many fail to realize that when we come as freshmen, we are also young, we are also attempting to find an identity and we are also seeking a new purpose-a direction that we hope to pursue for the rest of our lives… The feelings, beliefs and goals of the blacks of Amherst College are, again, diverse.”
Photo credit Amherst College Olio