Memorandum to officers of instruction and administration from the Dean of Faculty LeRoy C. Breunig, January 12, 1971, page 7

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          A number of questions must be asked about such programs, not
the least of which is their intellectual justification. It is one
thing to study women as a group in anthropological or sociological
terms to trace the history of the Suffragette or Feminist movements,
to examine the "debate about women," a literary motif as popular
in antiquity or during the Middle Ages as it is today. Is it
however equally justifiable to isolate for study the women writers
of a given country? do women novelists or poets constitute a
tradition separate from the greater national tradition? Are "the
Feminine Mystique" or "the Literary Mistreatment of Women" or
‘Women in Perspective" (courses attested to by Sheila Tobias of
Wesleyan University in Female Studies I and by the MLA Commission
on the Status of Women) valid subjects for study? In terms of
college curriculum as a whole, what should the prerequisites be
for the study of such subjects? A student mst knw French or
German to read the works of French or German women writers; should
she also be required to take a survey~course in the literature of
France or Germany before concentrating on such a selective group
of authors? The same question could be asked in terms of such
courses as "History of Women in the United States" or "Sociology
of Women" or "Evolution of Female Personality" or "Women in the
U.S. Economy." When women's studies are considered a major or
minor field of concentration, such questions become especially
important. And what, it has been asked, does a major in women's
studies do? does she simply go on to teach women's studies in her
turn? ("She" and "her" are correct: the proponents of women's
studies programs, even at coeducational institutions, seem to feel
that - for the moment, at least - the courses should be restricted
to women students.)

Barnard's answers to these questions have reflected a thoroughly
moderate approach. A women's studies program is being established,
not as a departmental major or an interdepartmental program, but as
an addition to the college curriculum which meets current interest
and current needs: some of the courses, for that matter, existed
before the pressures for a special program became evident, simply
as reflections of student interest and the concerns of certain
members of the faculty. Courses now exist in the departments of
English, French, and History; others are projected in German,
Sociology, Art History, and Economics. It is hoped tht our
students will elect one or more of the courses; it is also hoped
(and this would seem to be a national interest, not merely a local
one) that the need for special programs in women's studies will di-
minish as the traditional departments begin to pay more attention $i~
to the problems and the contributions of women - just as there would
be no need for courses in "Black History" or "Black Literature" if
departments of History and of Literature broadened their approaches
to their subjects. Faculty members - both women and men - in many
departments can benefit from such consideration of hitherto neglected
areas.

If the faculty is to familiarize itself with the subjects of
women's studies, if students are to be able to pursue their research,
then libraries must expand their collections of books by and about
women. Barnard has thus far taken only a modest step in this
direction: the Overbury Collection (originally the personal collection
of Mrs. Frederick C. Overbury, who graduated from the College in
1896) consists of some 1900 volumes and a smaller number of
manuscripts written by or about American women. Although mny

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