Features

Butterfield At 100: Romance on the Way to Wesleyan

A look at Victor Butterfield’s life before he became president of Wesleyan reveals a disciplined, determined young man who once spent hours in an Oskaloosa jail.BY ED “ACE” KNAPP ’43 AS A FRESHMAN FROM BROOKLYN IN 1952, Paul Schwaber watched Victor Butterfield, the 48-year-old president of Wesleyan, lob a football to a student on the…

Murder Will Out

Attorneys Bill Devereaux ’75 and Kevin Bristow ’79 played key roles in unraveling a horrendous miscarriage of justice.THE 7 A.M. MONDAY MORNING PHONE CALLdidn’t surprise attorney Bill Devereaux ’75. He often gave his home number to clients as a trial approached. But it wasn’t one of his clients on the other end of the line.…

Healing Torture’s Wounds

We hear news reports about the broken survivors of torture in Iraq, Afghanistan, Tibet, and elsewhere. Caring individuals, such as Dr. Cynthia Willard ’88, help them rediscover what it means to be alive.CYNTHIA WILLARD ’88 REMEMBERS THE EXACT MOMENT she decided to become a physician. She was walking down a red-dirt path between her dormitory and…

The Fault of Prophecy

A chance encounter near a storied temple puts a team of scientists on the trail of one of the ancient world’s greatest mysteries. THE SOLUTION TO PERHAPS THE GREATEST MYSTERY of ancient Greece depended on a chance meeting near the remains of a Roman villa in Portugal in 1995. True, things got clearer as an unsuspecting…

The Mysterious Art of Teaching

The award-winning author of the novel Edinburgh reflects on returning to campus as a visiting writer.BY ALEXANDER CHEE ’89 I GRADUATED FROM WESLEYAN IN 1989 as an English major with a B+ average and returned in the fall of 2002 as a visiting writer after the publication of my first novel. Being here again has been…

New Ideas Infuse the Curriculum

The Wesleyan campaign has supported an initiative to hire 20 new faculty members who have brought a stimulating variety of new ideas and new courses.BARRY CHERNOFF CAN BE A HARD GUY TO REACH when classes are not in session. His work as an environmental scientist bent on saving ecosystems from destruction takes him to remote areas…

Common Song for An Uncommon Film

ON A JUNE EVENING IN 2002, ethnomusicologist Tim Eriksen M.A. ’93 got a call that changed his life. He and his wife, fellow ethnomusicologist Mirjana (Minja) Lausevic Ph.D. ’98, were living in Minneapolis. She was a professor at the University of Minnesota. He had a solo singing career and was lead singer/guitarist in a folk-punk…

Uproar Over Act of Conscience

EVEN AFTER ALL THE REHEARSAL AND PREPARATION, Ari Silver-Isenstadt ’90 still didn’t know what he would actually do that morning in the operating room when he faced the ethical dilemma he’d been dreading. Certainly, he never imagined that a brief confrontation with a surgeon would derail his medical education and set him on a course…

A Fading Taboo?

SINCE HER EARLY YEARS GROWING UP IN SUBURBS OF CLEVELAND, Associate Professor of History and African American Studies Renee Romano has been a keen observer of racial relations in this country—and in her own daily life. This lifelong interest led her both to a teaching career and to her new book, Race Mixing: Black-White Marriage in…