PRIVATE Re: [Milton-L] keep your pronoun to yourself, please

Carol Barton cbartonphd at
Mon Apr 16 22:46:32 EDT 2007

That last thank you applies to you, too, Carrol. I understand some of your 
frustrations--and where the message below is coming from--and of course I 
also remember the scoundrels and the opportunists and the plain 
old-fashioned jerks.

But I think that, as a class, they had far more wisdom, far more learning, 
and far more academic integrity than the present generation of 
mantle-receivers. If we respected them because we didn't know what shysters 
and opportunists some of them were, sobeit . . . but we didn't consider them 
dirt under our feet . . . and we *did* learn some real values from those who 
weren't corrupted--and even from those who only pretended to embody the 
ideals they taught us.

I don't think that's happening today.

And I think what happened today is partly the result of a general lack of 
respect for everyone and everything--ME FIRST--attitude that these children 
have adopted as their creed.

Can we blame society and the media for not teaching them better values? Of 

But not every kid whose girlfriend rejects him, or whose boss fires him, or 
whose teacher flunks him, feels the need to walk into your classroom or mine 
and make sure that no one walks out alive.


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Carrol Cox" <cbcox at>
To: "John Milton Discussion List" <milton-l at>
Sent: Monday, April 16, 2007 10:27 PM
Subject: Re: [Milton-L] keep your pronoun to yourself, please

>A bit of ancient gossip. Perhaps relevant to this topic, whatever this
> topic is.
> On a cold March day in 1956 I was standing between Angel & Haven Hall
> talking to Professor Austin Warren -- a truly wonderful and most
> generous man. I happened to mention (I forget in what context) G.L.
> Kittridge, the famous Shakespeare scholar at Harvard. It was as though I
> had mentioned Stalin to Trotsky's widow -- the only time in my
> acquaintance with Austin Warren when I heard him express real rage. It
> seemed that Kittridge was a complete failure as a scholar, a teacher, as
> a human being. He went on at some length on the subject, in considerable
> detail!
> And another tidbit from "those days" in which all is said to have been
> so wonderful. A grad school friend had taken an incomplete in a course,
> and went to the professor (who was also the department's director of
> graduate studies) to discuss making it up. The professor told him it was
> against grad school regulations to make up incompletes after a year. The
> student argued. The professor called the grad school office, carried on
> a conversation, informed my friend that it was indeed against grad
> school regulations. A week later my friend happened to be in the grad
> school office, and mentioned in passing the incident. It turned out that
> this professor had held his finger on the cradle of the phone during the
> "conversation" and had faked the whole of it.
> All periods are highly varied. Hence the error of most nostalgia. Who
> would want to go back to the days when it was impossible to get a
> prohibition of lynching through the u.s. senate? And there never was nor
> is there now any 'Chinese Wall' between the academy and the world
> outside it.
> Carrol
> _______________________________________________
> Milton-L mailing list
> Milton-L at
> Manage your list membership and access list archives at 

More information about the Milton-L mailing list