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“I felt I could not say no without jeopardizing my grade or my recommendation,” the student wrote. Flad, who currently serves as interim chair of the department, did not respond to questions about his knowledge of Guedes’s allegations. Urton, Bestor, and Comaroff are just three among many Anthropology faculty at Harvard. Silverstein said reliance on social capital for career advancement created the conditions for exploitation in the advisor-student relationship, especially because of the precariousness of the academic job market. “We have also instituted a graduate advising team, which is independent of the student’s chosen committee and is empowered to address and mediate concerns the student might have with an advising relationship.”. “By university policy, senior hires are voted on only by senior faculty in the department,” they wrote. She told Singer that women were given the “lion’s share of the undergrad teaching load.”. Two former Ph.D. students in the department — Carrie J. Brezine and Jade d’Alpoim Guedes — told The Crimson this week that Urton sexually harassed them when they were graduate students. “Everything that you have to do with respect to the University, with respect to your department, and oftentimes even your professional contacts beyond Harvard goes through or is at least signed off on by your advisor,” said Max D. Price, an archaeology student who earned his Ph.D. from the department in 2016. They requested he immediately resign his professorship and his position as Faculty Curator of Andean Archaeology in the Peabody Museum. When the student told Madsen of her conversation with the FAS sexual harassment officer, he replied that the officer would be the “right person to speak to.”, The student wrote that she decided to submit the affidavit in 2016 because she felt it was “important that the University know that this sort of solicitation is occurring on the campus.”. The student said those criticisms seemed to stem from an “old-school notion of anthropology” which several powerful male faculty in the department hold. Husband-and-wife Yale professors resign in the wake of Halloween costume scandal: Couple driven out of politically correct campus. FAS policies at the time did not require him to elevate sexual harassment allegations reported to him, as current policies do. In an emailed response to the allegations against Comaroff, Dane wrote that while Harvard does not comment on individual circumstances, the University encourages affiliates to bring instances of sexual misconduct to its attention. I felt that was too risky a basis on which to propose a dissertation topic.”. The department removed Urton from his position as Director of Undergraduate Studies Tuesday as a result of allegations against him. STS Circle at Harvard. I am at a loss as to why such things should be alleged, let alone reported in The Crimson in the absence of any due process, if there is to be one,” he wrote. Standing Committee for a Supportive Departmental Community On May 29 and June 5, 2020, our community was deeply shaken by two articles published in the Harvard Crimson that reported allegations of misconduct and inappropriate behavior by faculty associated with the Anthropology Department. “The Faculty of Arts and Sciences’ (FAS) Sexual and Gender-Based Harassment Policy and Procedures maintains that any member of our community, former or current, may file a formal complaint, request an informal resolution, and/or seek supportive measures to help the individual continue their education, research, and participation in all aspects of the University,” she wrote. I cannot affirm or deny any accounts made by others.”. “This must happen definitively and swiftly and he must be removed from all student contact and teaching.”. Over the years, Harvard and the Anthropology department’s response to repeated allegations against Bestor caused concern among those familiar with the case. The Museo de Arte de Lima in Peru, where Urton was co-curator of an exhibit on Khipus scheduled to open this year, suspended all collaboration with Urton, according to a statement posted on Twitter Tuesday. The next morning, July 21, Urton sent Guedes another email from his Harvard account, according to the exhibits. Browse the latest online anthropology courses from Harvard University, including "Tangible Things" and "Pyramids of Giza: Ancient Egyptian Art and Archaeology." In February 2019, the complainant wrote to Senior Associate Dean of Faculty Affairs Kwok W. Yu to ask about the status of the apology letters. A Conn. woman is suing Harvard for allegedly profiting from a photo of her ancestor, an African slave forced to pose in what is believed to be one of the oldest images of a slave in the US. “That model of a successful anthropologist that was shown to me was very much a model based upon someone who generally would live like a white male person of privilege.”. “We want to underscore the seriousness with which we take all such allegations and our strong commitment to addressing them using every means at our disposal to create a department climate that is free from harassment and sexual misconduct,” Subramanian and Flad wrote. Cummings wrote in an emailed statement that the Ombudsman is a “confidential, neutral and independent resource” for Harvard affiliates. In her email announcing the decision to put Urton on paid administrative leave, Gay referenced the allegation in the Crimson story and Guedes’s allegation, which she had posted on social media. Since 2000, the department has tenured nine junior faculty — three men in archaeology, and four men and two women in social anthropology. The following account is based on emails, affidavits filed in federal court, and other documents obtained by The Crimson, and on interviews conducted over the past eight months with 72 individuals, including 41 current and former graduate students in the department and five former faculty members. The two women came forward days after an investigation by The Crimson found another former student had accused Urton of sexual harassment in 2016, though that she never filed a formal charge against him. Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) Richard H. Meadow. They had heard that another Harvard archaeology professor got too drunk at a … “Now I’m a dean and I saw that for myself when I had a woman dean take me under her wing and really say to me, ‘You could do this, if this is what you want to do.’”. Later that day, she received an email from Urton’s personal email account, asking if she “would be interested in something more intimate.”, “I mean, lunch is still on offer, and would be quite pleasant, but, well, what if I got a hotel room and then we got a bottle of wine and spent an afternoon in conversation and exploration?” Urton wrote in the email, which Guedes also attached to her complaint. The Tozzer Anthropology Building and Peabody Museum house offices for Harvard's Anthropology department. In a May 19 statement to The Crimson, Urton wrote that he had never violated FAS policies on sexual harassment and that, due to confidentiality rules, he could issue nothing but a blanket denial of allegations against him. He started teaching two classes in January 2019, but had not yet sent all of the required apology letters. Harvard’s decision, reported on the front page of The New York Times, appeared to be a counterweight to the Supreme Court’s ruling. In response, the department suggested to all professors that they hold regular office hours and create a template for their students to request recommendation letters. Gbemisola AbiolaResearch Interests: post (post) colonial studies, African literature, African political thought, war studies, and critical terrorism studies email … Follow him on Twitter at @jamepdx. “For the record, I have not been banished from the Department of Anthropology, my office, or my teaching, nor informed of any formal charges.”. Bestor, 68, who studies modern Japan; Urton, 73, who specializes in pre-Columbian archaeology; and Comaroff, 75, who studies postcolonial Africa, are all tenured professors in the department. “Whether that’s faculty of color or women, not seeing people in those positions just gives you that extra hurdle that you have to try to climb over.”. The student committee also found that female archaeology students have consistently taken more time to complete their degrees than their male counterparts over the last 30 years, and that the gap has grown over time. The twenty-five faculty who signed the letter included Flad, department chair Ajantha Subramanian, 12 other tenured faculty, and all five of the department’s current tenure-track faculty. No specifics were given, but accusations spread like wildfire on social media. Peabody Professor of American Archaeology and Ethnology. She said she signed a contract agreeing that her work on the database would belong to Harvard, and that Urton always credited her for her work. The Department of Anthropology offers coursework and training leading to the PhD in two principal fields of specialization—archaeology and social anthropology—that have their own programs of study and examination procedures. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit on Thursday backed Harvard University in a lawsuit over its admissions system. “No matter what the circumstance, I could not disclose personal information about a student or former student.”, He wrote that he has “adhered scrupulously” to the FAS’s policies on sexual harassment throughout his entire career, “despite unfounded rumors which may appear from time to time.”, Current FAS sexual harassment policies explicitly prohibit faculty from engaging in sexual relations with students under their supervision; the policies in place in 2011 only noted that faculty members who did so were “liable for formal action against them.”, “In the academic context, the fundamental element of sexual harassment is ordinarily the inappropriate personal attention by an instructor or other officer who is in a position to exercise professional power over another individual,” the 2011 policies read. By Alison McCook, Retraction Watch Jul. Chilton and Mandryk both said other professors told them to treat their junior faculty position as a postdoctoral appointment, rather than a chance at tenure. She alleged in the affidavit that Urton provided alcohol and made sexual advances toward her while she was intoxicated, which she submitted to. Anthropology Online (Harvard Key required) Brings together a wide range of written ethnographies, field notes, seminal texts, memoirs, and contemporary studies. The department requested authorization for four hires last year and hosted 14 scholars for job talks, but the FAS ultimately authorized only “one targeted search for a senior woman who was part of the canvass,” according to their statement. Male students would go out for drinks or meals with professors; female students often only learned of them later. Dane declined to comment in response to the allegations against Urton and the 2013 allegations against Bestor. “When I discussed this issue with Prof. Urton I urged him to resolve this problem as an issue of intellectual dispute over access to the data she needed for her PhD research.”, “I certainly would have done more if the issue were a hostile work environment,” he added. He then moved around his desk and placed his hand on her knee. He added, however, that the allegations provided to him by The Crimson are “either untrue, inaccurate, or misleading.”, “Even if I were able to identify the students or events to which you refer in your email, under state and federal law, and Harvard University policies, the only comment I would be permitted would be a blanket denial,” he wrote. She also emailed an FAS sexual harassment officer, and later told the officer by phone about Urton’s inappropriate behavior, the sexual exchange, and the subsequent affair. “Where these vast power dynamics are especially insidious is with those really informal channels, like who is willing to make a phone call for you or not,” Silverstein said. And while the allegations against Bestor and Urton are now several years old, those leveled against Comaroff remain an ongoing concern for the students involved. A young archaeology graduate student at Harvard is bludgeoned to death by the professor with whom she’s having an affair. They added that recent senior faculty hires have also reflected institutional diversity, with none of the five lateral hires in the last decade coming from other Ivy League institutions. 27, 2017 , 2:45 PM. Chilton, Mandryk, and Kramer all said junior faculty today may have a stronger chance at earning tenure in Anthropology than they did. “That said, in our procedures for external senior hires, we have worked hard in recent decades to include the voices of untenured faculty and students in the hiring processes.”. During the meeting, the student told Urton she hoped to work as a teacher and attend the Harvard Divinity School. The courts rejected her argument that Urton turned against her when he learned of public comments she made and her meetings with students who had allegedly been harassed by Bestor. Thereafter, and for some two and a half centuries forward, it would broadly be understood as that branch of ‘natural history’ which investigated the psychophysical origins and diversification of the human race, or races, as was very often the case. Later on July 21, Urton contacted her from his FAS email account, writing “if you would be so kind, let's forget my last email; it was a bad and inappropriate idea.” He also asked Guedes if she still planned to meet him for lunch five days later. The student wrote in the 2014 affidavit that the conduct had stopped, and that she had been able to “maintain a cordial relationship” with Bestor, though she chose to distance herself from him. According to several current and former graduate students, allegations against him are the most widely known instances of alleged sexual misconduct in the department. Scientific misconduct is the violation of the standard codes of scholarly conduct and ethical behavior in the publication of professional scientific research.A Lancet review on Handling of Scientific Misconduct in Scandinavian countries gave examples of policy definitions. “Certain perspectives then become entrenched because you aren’t bringing up your junior faculty and incorporating them into the department's perspective.”. Although David Graeber co-authored the foreword to the first issue of HAU, his association with the project was mostly ornamental.The author of best-sellers Debt: the First 5000 Years and Bullshit Jobs: A Theory he achieved fame as a political activist during the Occupy Wall Street movement. Three female students who spoke on the condition of anonymity and attended Harvard over the past decade also said male faculty actively discouraged them from having children. “I was essentially told that I could file a complaint or get a degree, but not both,” Brezine wrote in an email. But dozens of people who passed through the department over the last two decades told The Crimson that the problems women face there stretch beyond the allegations against individual professors. In July 2012, when Guedes was in her second-to-last year of graduate school, she encountered Urton in the lab where she was working late at night. “Part of what was difficult at the time was, I was about to go on the job market and I was just having this moment of being like, ‘if I report this guy, that might be it for me, like my whole academic career is done,’” Guedes said in an interview. “The same can be said for the 22 years prior to my appointment at Harvard. Last November, Flad implemented several measures that drastically reduced Comaroff’s contact with Anthropology students as a result of concerns raised about his behavior, including asking him not to use his office in the Tozzer Anthropology Building and removing him from a class he was scheduled to teach, according to documents obtained by The Crimson and people with direct knowledge of the situation. “In my 18 years as a member of the Harvard faculty, no student or former student has ever filed a complaint against me with the Office of Dispute Resolution, my Department or the Dean,” he wrote. Senior Lecturer. “It was definitely pointed out to me that it was assumed that I wasn’t really or couldn’t be a serious researcher if I took being a mother seriously,” Mandryk said. In response to questions from The Crimson, the student wrote that she has “no ill feelings for Dr. Urton,” but that she believed that she would have completed further education at Harvard if not for him. “This could involve an instructor who determines a student’s grade or who can otherwise affect the student’s academic performance or professional future.”. Research and Teaching Interests: Language, music, and semiotics; urban anthropology; anthropology of religion; South Korea. At the time, Urton was engaged in an affair with one of his former students that began when she asked Urton to write her a recommendation letter, according to another sealed affidavit filed in the Theidon case. Other Anthropology faculty who were the subjects of complaints, however, have not faced formal discipline. Though four of the five junior faculty in the department this fall will be women, only four of its 22 senior faculty will be, according to Subramanian and Flad. Subramanian and Flad also wrote that much has changed in recent years regarding how the department treats internal tenure candidates. Want to keep up with breaking news? According to the complainant’s affidavit, FAS required, among other measures, that Bestor not contact her, that he step down as director of the Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies, that Harvard investigate Bestor’s conduct with other students, that Bestor write letters apologizing to witnesses in the investigation, and that Bestor not return to work until he completed the sanctions. “So I decided not to do anything.”. Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) Richard H. Meadow. “My condition only got worse at dinner where there was an abundance of wine, causing me to become extremely intoxicated.”, “The incident, which I deeply regret and for which I accepted full responsibility, made me finally recognize that I had a serious problem with alcohol,” he wrote. “As a result, the letters of apology to others in attendance at the dinner were delayed in being sent.” Chilton — who will become provost of Washington State University in August — said she believed it was important to be a role model for female undergraduates and graduate students while she was in Harvard’s department. Since 1990, female archaeology students have taken longer to complete their Ph.Ds, withdrawn at higher rates, published fewer articles by graduation, and undertaken a disproportionate workload as teaching fellows, according to a copy of the report obtained by The Crimson. The Society for American … “We see your continued presence as an impediment in our efforts to move the department in a more equitable, responsive, and responsible direction.”. At Harvard, such informal networks have been largely inaccessible to women, several students and former faculty said. “If you have cited the Khipu Database Project, or found it interesting, you should know that it was first created on the sexual exploitation of a staff/graduate student,” Brezine wrote. In response to the student committee’s findings that women are disproportionately selected as head teaching fellows — a position the committee estimated can come with double the workload of a standard teaching fellow post — the faculty wrote that they will work to evenly distribute those roles. Student who alleges a violation of these policies can request a thorough investigation through ODR of least... Cummings wrote in the Peabody Museum would, revoke my access at any time if I did not to. 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