In the 1970s, strange quacks could be heard from 1915 Trinity Ave. Don’t tell the landlord, but five women were raising ducks in the basement.
Ann Lenane ’78 recalls the roommates adopted two ducks from a rescue project and spent one summer raising them. They fashioned leashes and took the ducks on daily walks until they grew old enough to return to the wild.
“We were a group of geeky women,” says housemate Sue DeWillie Costa ’78. “Two medical technologists, a biology major, a civil engineer and a pre-med
The house had beautiful hardwood floors and attic access and reflected the science-heavy majors in its décor. Decorations included a poster of the Krebs cycle, depicting cellular energy production.
“The best part of living on Trinity was independence from the dorm, yet the family feel if you wanted it,” recalls Rosemary Pilat Flikkema ’78. “You could pretend you were grown up and on your own without being alone.”
Life on Trinity wasn’t all work and no play. The big backyard was ideal for sunbathing, and the women even grew a veggie garden. They also gathered on the porch that spans the entire front of the house to make ice cream.
Like many UD students, the women got to know their neighbors. Costa recalls a prank war that led to the women hiding raw chicken on the porch of the rugby house next door, in hopes that the rancid smell would annoy the boys. Lenane says living next to the athletes was noisy at times but fun and made the women feel safe.
The two years the women lived together brought a lot of change but was an experience they will never forget.
“My best memories with the roommates were sharing big moments like our 21st birthdays, Connie’s engagement, Ann’s med school acceptance and graduation,” says Flikkema. “We shared our hopes with each other and relied on each other for a grounding when things were tough. For two years, Trinity was home.”
Take a tour through 1915 Trinity with today’s residents.
And suggest we take a tour of your old house. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Then leave the guns behind, says a scholar of political violence whose study of nonviolent movements turned her understanding upside-down.
I stepped off the airplane in Copenhagen, Denmark, and into a meeting about the Syrian resistance. Three activists using pseudonyms for fear of government reprisals told of three thousand civilians killed and many thousands detained in their quest to overthrow their government.
As the audience in the Danish Parliament — several hundred Danish government officials, journalists, activists, human rights workers and academics — listened, I could see the questions on their faces: Have the Syrians exhausted nonviolent methods? Is it time for them to take up arms?
The chair of the panel then asked for my view. I went to the podium, apologized for my obvious jetlag, and through an Arabic interpreter assured the activists that by refusing to use violence, they were on the right track — that active but peaceful methods were the best way to produce results. And I could even estimate their chances of success.
“If the Syrian uprising maintains nonviolent discipline and the regime’s security forces continued to defect, the chance that they will defeat Bashar al-Assad’s government — completely removing it from power — approaches 60 percent,” I said. “But if they turn to violence, their odds drop by half to 30 percent.”
When I made these claims in September, I could see audience members perk up, wondering how Danes could help Syrians defeat their tyrant. I stressed that the international community could offer moral support, but the real force for change would continue to be internal, civilian-led, nonviolent mass action.
At least one Syrian in the crowd was not convinced. A middle-aged exile based in Paris, he rejected the notion that nonviolent resistance alone could topple the Assad regime. He called for the “Libyanization” of the conflict — providing arms to Syrian civilians and military defectors while using international forces to neutralize Assad’s military. I insisted that, historically, armed insurgencies backed by foreign militaries had a worse track record than nonviolent resistance campaigns.
The man dismissed my comments in a way that needed no translation: “Naïve.”
I always thought I would spend my life trying to understand the causes and consequences of political violence. I was 9 years old when the Berlin Wall came down, and I remember watching news coverage of the 1989 revolutions sweeping across Eastern Europe with my family after we ate dinner in our cozy colonial home in a Dayton suburb.
When I was 13 years old, my parents bought me Zlata’s Diary. Sometimes called “the Anne Frank of Sarajevo,” Zlata Filipovic was a Bosnian Serb who found fame at the age of 13 after a journalist published her personal accounts of the war in the Balkans. The wars that accompanied the breakup of Yugoslavia became a particular interest of mine, and the book had a profound impact on me. Zlata was my own age, yet I had never experienced the horror of a military siege, the violent deaths of my schoolmates or hunger, as Zlata had. Zlata’s Diary had a lot to do with my decision to commit my life to studying violent conflict. (Interestingly, decades later, I met and talked with Zlata about this at an event at Harvard University, where I was a fellow).
I spent much of my teenage years hunched over my desk, door closed, listening to the classical music of Dvorak or Vaughan Williams on a hand-me-down Discman as I devoured books on the wars of the 20th century — the First World War, the Russian Revolution, World War II, Vietnam and the Persian Gulf War. Movies and television reinforced the idea that political violence was something people used to gain and wield power.
By the time I came to UD, I knew that I wanted a career in international relations with an emphasis on security. I would study political violence, understand it, explain it and predict it. I reasoned that prediction allowed for some degree of control — the ability to anticipate or even prevent human suffering.
After 9/11, my interest shifted to why non-state actors, like terrorist groups or insurgent movements, used violence. During my first few years of graduate school at the University of Colorado, I focused on terrorism in weak and failed states — a product of the times. In my field, the early 2000s were dominated by policy debates about whether weak and failed states were truly incubators of terrorism, and whether using military intervention to impose democracy on such states would solve the problem. CNN and news wires fed me real-time accounts of the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003, and I gathered information about violent conflicts in the Middle East and Asia. I developed interests in corruption, violent insurgency and government repression, and I learned how to use advanced statistical techniques to forecast such situations.
I spent a lot of time getting into the minds of people on the “dark side” by speculating about which circumstances could lead me to use violence against others for political aims. This understanding would help me grasp the logics people used to justify violence. I became skilled in making sense of it all. I settled on a rationalization that violence was purely instrumental — that people used it for good reasons, usually because it was the only way to achieve their goals or express their grievances. I came to believe that in many situations, violence worked. I thought of it in purely strategic terms, and I remained agnostic about its morality.
Basically, there were three major assumptions underlying my worldview. First, violence was effective. Otherwise, why would anyone use it? Second, violence was always a last resort, chosen after other methods had failed. That means that wherever people were using violence, it was probably the only way for them to resist. Third, if there were other options, such as nonviolent protest, people would have been using those options all along. But because nonviolence was weak and generally ineffective, violence was necessary.
I developed a reputation as an influential scholar on terrorism and international security. I enjoyed being one of a few young women with such a specialty. In a field dominated by men, there was some novelty in being a female scholar who wasn’t shocked by even the most horrendous atrocities, like Al Qaeda’s strategy of killing Iraqi children and filling their corpses with mines that would detonate and kill others who found the bodies.
I became desensitized to violence, comfortable with it. The world I lived in was a scary place, but for the time being, I saw it as reality.
In June of 2006, “people power” came into my life and shifted this reality. I was finishing my doctoral thesis on why terrorist groups tend to emerge in democracies when a colleague sent me an announcement about a conference at Colorado College. “The other side of the coin … might be interesting,” he wrote in an email.
It would completely alter my views on violence.
The workshop was on the subject of civil resistance — a method of conflict in which unarmed civilians employ nonviolent actions like protests, strikes, boycotts, stay-aways and demonstrations to challenge entrenched power. Given my area of expertise, I was skeptical about incorporating the topic into the courses I was teaching. There was no room, I thought, to cover a feel-good topic in the midst of all of the really important material about violence.
But in preparation for the workshop, I did the required reading — books and articles by Gene Sharp, Peter Ackerman and Jack DuVall, Stephen Zunes, Kurt Schock, and other scholars and practitioners of nonviolent resistance. The works generally argued that people could use a wide variety of nonviolent methods to change their circumstances and their institutions, even under the direst of conditions. They cited examples — the anti-apartheid campaign in South Africa, the anti-Milosevic campaign in Serbia and the Solidarity movement in Poland. I had several recurring thoughts: “This is naïve,” “Nonviolent resistance can’t work in very oppressive countries” and “Violence is what makes the world go around.”
Yet I was very curious.
During one of the workshop’s coffee breaks, I scribbled a research design onto a scrap of paper. I shared it with Maria Stephan, then the director of educational initiatives at the International Center on Nonviolent Conflict, who had helped organize the conference. I would not be convinced of the power of nonviolent conflict without hard empirical evidence, but I was willing to undertake the research. A few weeks later, ICNC agreed to support the study.
After spending a year collecting, refining, documenting, checking, double-checking and cleaning the data, I had created a database that comprised over 300 major nonviolent and violent mass movements for regime change, self-determination and secession since 1900. I accounted for factors like the brutality of the regime, the nature of the political system, support from allies, and the size and location of each country. I had also accounted for features of the campaigns themselves, including the number of participants, the ability to provoke defections from security forces, international support, and the campaign’s goals and duration. The list of nonviolent campaigns was diverse, ranging from Gandhi’s Indian Independence campaign from 1919-1947 to the Chinese pro-democracy campaign (which failed notoriously in Tiananmen Square in 1989) to the East Timorese independence movement (which succeeded in 2000).
I remained skeptical until I began to analyze the data. The results were breathtaking.
The nonviolent campaigns were more than twice as effective as the violent ones. Moreover, the success rates of nonviolent campaigns had increased over time, whereas violent insurgencies had become less effective during the last 20 years.
These results held up even when the nonviolent campaigns were facing brutal authoritarian regimes that responded with violent crackdowns. Nonviolent resistance was succeeding in some countries — the Philippines, Serbia, Poland, Thailand, Nepal, South Africa and Chile — where violent resistance had failed utterly. And perhaps most importantly, the countries that experienced nonviolent uprisings were much more likely to transition to democracies and much less likely to experience a relapse into civil war compared with countries facing violent insurgencies. Contrary to everything I had previously thought, mass civil resistance — not violence — was the force creating change in the world.
As I sat in a puffy chair in a coffee shop in Berkeley, Calif., I took a deep breath and thought, “This changes everything.” No more could I assure myself that violence was a necessary evil in the world. Instead, the research showed that violence was ineffective. Even against really nasty regimes, nonviolent resistance was a real alternative. And that meant there is no real excuse for using violent insurgency.
I called Maria, who was equally stunned by the results, and we resolved to write a book explaining why civil resistance has been so effective as a force for change in the world.
The copyedits of Why Civil Resistance Works had just gone to press when, in January 2011, people throughout the Arab world began to challenge authoritarian rulers by using civil resistance. There were breathtaking victories: Jan. 14, Ben Ali fell in Tunisia, followed by Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak in February. The regimes collapsed in exactly the way our book discussed: nonviolent mass movements had broadened their participation enough to create relationships with security forces, and when the orders came down to suppress the movements, the security forces had refused to obey.
All of a sudden, my email inbox began to fill with questions from the press, from the government, from other academics. They wanted to know what was going on, how these regimes came apart in the face of nonviolent resistance and whether such resistance could succeed in Saudi Arabia, Iran, Bahrain, Oman and elsewhere. I was glad that I had answers that were grounded in empirical fact rather than speculation.
Libya — where a couple of days of uncoordinated nonviolent protest quickly escalated to violent rebellion — was a particularly troubling case. In March, The New York Times asked me to write an op-ed on whether violence was the best way for Libya’s rebels to overthrow Moammar Gadhafi. Incorporating data on Libya’s own unique characteristics, I had estimated that the violent revolution had less than a 20 percent chance of removing or overthrowing Gadhafi, compared with about 50 percent if the revolution had remained nonviolent. (Ultimately, the rebels came close to defeat until the international community intervened to support them — at a high cost in human suffering.) Whether the coming years bring stability or civil war remains to be seen, but my statistical model predicts that Libya’s chance of becoming a democracy within the next five years is less than 10 percent.
After the Times published the piece, I was sitting in Wesleyan’s faculty lounge having lunch with a colleague, one of the world’s leading experts on Syria. I asked him whether he thought nonviolent resistance would catch on there. He shook his head and said, “There is no way this thing is going to spread to Syria. No way.”
Only days later, it did.
Today, I spend most of my time relating the remarkable record of nonviolent resistance to American and foreign government agencies, international organizations, scholars, activists, nongovernmental organization workers, journalists and others, explaining the strategic dynamics of nonviolence. The work puts me in contact with ordinary people who are trying to use their natural skills and talents to cast off circumstances they find intolerable. I have tried to give encouragement to those using civil resistance in places like Syria, India, Zimbabwe, Mexico, the Philippines, the Palestinian Territories and the United States — and I have tried to give pause to those contemplating using violence.
I recently returned from Asia, where several experts and I presented material on civil resistance in a four-day workshop with Chinese human rights workers. I presented my research on the historical record of nonviolent resistance and on the potential for civil resistance to change even the most stubborn political systems.
The participants sat silent during the workshop, unused to speaking freely. But during the last session, one of the quietest participants, a young woman, picked up a microphone. She said with great sincerity that she lived in daily fear. Her job was to help people who have been oppressed — often putting her in direct opposition to the Chinese government — and she was terrified by the disappearances of friends and colleagues who had done similar work. But then she said that after hearing about the success of nonviolent resistance elsewhere, her fear was subsiding.
She realized that she was not alone, and that there were millions of people around the world working for change in their societies. She said she could be a force for positive reform in her country and that the impossible now seemed possible.
I have been surprised by how much this research gives hope to others. No matter where in the world the audience is, whether Syria, China or elsewhere, people always initially dismiss the idea of civil resistance as naïve. I understand. I have come a long way myself in overcoming skepticism, and I do not live in oppressive conditions, as do many of the people with whom I now work. It is both humbling and satisfying to watch fear evaporate as people begin to realize their potential. I feel that I learn more from their courage and experience than they could ever learn from me.
This is why research is only part of the story today. I once thought that by mastering the study of violence, I could help avoid conflicts in our world, and that this would help reduce suffering. I am no longer so naïve. Today I know that conflict is inevitable, but it need not weaken or destroy societies. When people empower themselves, refuse to submit to oppression and engage in civil resistance, conflict can be a constructive force for change in our world.
Erica Chenoweth ’02, who majored in political science and German, is an assistant professor of government at Wesleyan University and director of Wesleyan’s Program on Terrorism and Insurgency Research, which she established in 2008. She is currently on sabbatical in California, where she is a visiting scholar at UC-Berkeley and a visiting assistant professor at Stanford University. While her research takes her around the world, she can always be found on the blog “Rational Insurgent” and on Twitter @EricaChenoweth.
Why Civil Resistance Works: The Strategic Logic of Nonviolent Conflict by Erica Chenoweth and Maria Stephan
Civil Resistance and Power Politics by Adam Roberts and Timothy Garton Ash
Bringing Down a Dictator, a York/Zimmerman film
Unarmed Insurrections by Kurt Schock
From Dictatorship to Democracy by Gene SharpNo Comments
We can’t see the future, but we know a good opportunity when we see it — and we seize it.
The 2008 version of the University’s master plan — the last one published — outlined a number of projects to guide the physical development of our campus. But the University’s most significant transformation during the past three years wasn’t then on the drawing board.
The opportunity to expand our boundaries and show our commitment to the city and region could not be ignored when NCR Corp. moved its world headquarters to Georgia in 2009. We purchased the property in December of that year, an acquisition that University President Daniel J. Curran called “a bold move for a private, Catholic university” — and one that was noticed nationally by, among others, The Chronicle of Higher Education and The New York Times.
As a result of the purchase, we’ve updated our master plan. The 2011 master plan serves as a bold, yet flexible, blueprint for the campus of the future and ties directly into our strategic plan. This master plan, which builds on the 2008 plan, guides our physical development as one of the nation’s pre-eminent Catholic universities.
The NCR purchase is the biggest change to the 2008 campus master plan. It gives us more room to house departments and classes and frees space on our core campus for other projects. It’s an exciting time as we embrace physical expansion and transformation while continuing to maintain the unique character of our University of Dayton campus.
We hope you’ll soon have a chance to see the changes firsthand, whether you’re returning for Reunion Weekend or just a random weekend — or showing a prospective student in your life what it means to be a Flyer. Be sure to tell that student that you had to walk up Stuart Hill. Both ways. In the snow. Some things never change.
What’s on our drawing board?
• 1700 South Patterson The $18 million acquisition of 115 acres of land from NCR Corp. was one of the most transformational moves since the purchase that established UD in 1850. It is believed to be the first time an institution of higher education has made such a purchase. It’s now part of campus. 1700 South Patterson has become home to the first phase of an interactive Alumni Center. The second phase, which is expected to add gathering and exhibition spaces and an auditorium, is in the planning and fundraising stages.
The University of Dayton Research Institute’s Technologically Advanced Cognition Laboratory, sensor systems division, and the director’s and other offices have arrived, and more UDRI offices and labs are coming. Graduate courses in educational leadership, counselor education and business administration are being taught here, as well as classes in the Intensive English Program. The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute also calls the building home.
• Old River Park The University has hired SWA Group, an internationally recognized landscape architecture, planning and urban design firm, to create a master plan for Old River Park. The plan will focus on preserving the 48-acre park’s historical character and natural beauty while connecting it to campus and guiding its development for academic, research and recreational use. It will remain closed in 2012 as officials develop a timeline and funding plan for making multimillion-dollar improvements over phases.
• GE Aviation Electrical Power Integrated Systems Research and Development Center (EPISCENTER) Groundbreaking took place in April 2011 on the EPISCENTER, a $51 million project encompassing eight acres on River Park Drive. When completed in early 2013, the area will feature a four-story facility with a 40,000-square-foot office building connected to an 80,000-square-foot, world-class electrical research center. It will be the first new LEED-certified building on campus.
• University Center for the Arts The University Center for the Arts, a major University fundraising initiative, will bring together the visual and performing arts recently scattered among seven buildings. In addition to classroom, studio and office space, the center could include a major music and theatrical performance venue, a black-box theater and recital hall, atrium and galleries, lecture hall and art library, and Flyer TV and digital media studio. The new center will promote collaboration across the arts and invite new partnerships with community arts organizations. Construction on the arts center, estimated to cost $35 million, will begin once fundraising is complete.
• College Park Center The College Park Center has been part of the University campus since 2005. Today, nearly all of the space in the 450,000-plus square-foot, six-story building is occupied. Residents include the visual arts department and doctoral program in physical therapy, the Dayton Early College Academy, Marianist archives, University advancement and a variety of engineering labs, including intelligent optics, biomechanics, electro-optics and LADAR.
• Caldwell Street Apartments In 2012, more than 400 students will move into a new apartment complex on campus. Ground-breaking for the $25 million Caldwell Street Apartments took place in May 2011. The apartments will have a townhouse-style façade and 427 beds for upperclassmen and international students when completed in time for the 2012-13 academic year. A courtyard will connect the five buildings in the complex.
• Chapel of the Immaculate Conception Fundraising is well under way for the $12 million renovation to the Chapel of the Immaculate Conception. As of June 30, 2011, UD had raised almost $8 million in gifts, pledges and planned gifts. Once fundraising is complete, UD will break ground for the approximately 18-month construction process; a temporary worship space will be set up for Mass each weekend in the
Kennedy Union ballroom. For more information, go to www.udayton.edu/alumni/give/chapel_renovation.php.
• Stuart Field The 2011 Princeton Review ranked UD eighth nationally on its “Everybody Plays Intramural Sports” list. A $2.25 million renovation to Stuart Field might be a reason to rise even higher. After years of playing on a beloved but muddy mess, UD’s 3,700 intramural and sport club participants are enjoying upgraded playing surfaces with synthetic turf that accommodates sports from lacrosse to soccer, flag football, softball and more.
Over the next three years, the University will invest more than $100 million in its learning-living infrastructure, funded through a combination of University resources, private support, private-public partnerships, and federal and state grants.
The Caldwell housing project, for example, is just the newest step in a plan to provide an unparalleled residential experience to students. Marianist Hall opened in 2004, Marycrest Hall got a facelift from 2006 to 2008, Stuart Hall renovations are complete, and upgrades to the safety and appearance of houses in the student neighborhoods are ongoing. Students in Virginia W. Kettering Residence Hall this year are the first to enjoy a renovation of the hall’s dining facilities.
Future housing-related plans include a renovation of rooms and restroom facilities in Founders Hall and upgrades to the student neighborhoods, including the construction of five new houses, four on Lowes and one on Rogge. Currently, 5,907 beds are available for students. The new apartments and houses will increase that number to 6,334.
Other proposed projects during the next three years and beyond include:
• Converting more of the 1700 South Patterson Building into laboratories and offices for the University of Dayton Research Institute.
• Improving the outer appearance, addressing infrastructure needs and transforming Roesch Library into a modern learning center with more spaces for students to study and greater electronic learning tools.
• Renovating John F. Kennedy Memorial Student Union.
• Modernizing Alumni Hall.
• Finishing renovation of the Science Center, including high-tech labs, new windows, classroom renovations, technology upgrades and infrastructure improvements.
• Adding further open space enhancements, such as a pedestrian/bike greenway and multi-use recreation/basketball courts near RecPlex.
• Renovating Chaminade Hall or funding a new home for the School of Education and Allied Professions.
• Developing a restaurant at the Arena Sports Complex in partnership with a commercial enterprise.
“Some of the projects in our master plan are dependent upon fundraising. We also remain open to exploring other partnerships on Campus West (west of Main Street) that tie into our academic mission,” University President Daniel J. Curran said.
The ripple effect
Mathematician Edward Lorenz lent his talents to forecasting weather for the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II, but he is better remembered for the chaos theory he later developed, memorably coining the term “butterfly effect” for the outsized meteorological implications of seemingly small phenomena. A butterfly flapping its wings in Tokyo, goes the cliché that now endures, could cause a tornado in California.
The purchase of enough property to double the size of campus is of far more significance than a butterfly flapping its wings, and the effects of this expansion are being felt by more than the programs relocating to the new land and facilities.
The UD Research Institute’s move to River Campus, for example, frees valuable Kettering Labs space for the School of Engineering’s use. The construction of the planned University Center for the Arts allows for the demolition of the Music/Theatre Building, which will open space for significant upgrades of Baujan Field. The relocation of visual arts programs to College Park Center allowed the demolition of Mechanical Engineering — which, in turn, created space for the Central Mall — and freed up Rike Center, which in January became a highly visible home for the growing Center for International Programs. The center’s move, in turn, opens up space in Alumni Hall.
And so on. The future remains a canvas full of possibilities.
Change is good
Imagine the Immaculate Conception Chapel without its distinctive blue cupola with the cross on top. Picture instead a
bell tower that stands as the highest point on campus.
If the 1920 land-use master plan had been followed to completion, that would be how we would know campus today. But the University preserved the cupola and cross.
Interesting details can be found in UD’s past master plans, all of which show how different the University could have looked had UD not adapted to new times and opportunities as it did.
A workable plan, includng the one UD has today, must be open to the possibility of change. The University remains focused on its long-range goals but recognizes that flexibility is necessary if circumstances change.
The master plan is a land-use plan, one in which UD looks to “pilot a path forward using our current resources,” says Beth Keyes, vice president for facilities management. “The best laid plans are made to be broken.”
For a more comprehensive look at the 2011 master plan, go to udayton.edu/masterplan.No Comments
My first visit to the campus of the University of Dayton was 60 years ago when I was a year out of high school. I was interested in art and curious about the Society of Mary.
A priest, a former Jesuit who was my mentor at the time, reminded me that St. Paul learned something important about the people of Ephesus by noticing shrines and statues that honored the goddess Diana. In a similar way, he noted that much about the vision of Marianist founder Blessed William Joseph Chaminade can be learned by looking at the good works — or art — of the Society of Mary and the Family of Mary members.
On campus, however, I saw only European or Old World-type religious art, as in the Chapel of the Immaculate Conception and the statue of Mary in front of St. Mary Hall. I assumed that these were commissioned or at least purchased by Marianists but not created by them. I thought I knew who the Marianists were and what art was; I naively thought there was probably no such thing as Marianist art. However, I have come to see how inaccurate and incomplete my early perceptions of the Marianists and of art were.
At first I thought the Marianists were simply the professed brothers and priests of a religious order founded by Chaminade in France in the 19th century.
I learned that with his chief partner, Mlle. Marie Thérèse de Lamourous, Chaminade co-founded the Daughters of Mary. Today, thanks to historical research such as that by Father Eduardo Benlloch, S.M., Chaminade’s vision is seen as primarily that of a broad Catholic lay movement with the professed religious ministering to one another and to the overall group, the Family of Mary. [See Eduardo Benlloch, Origins of the Marianist Family: Notes on Marianist History, North American Center for Marianist Studies, 2010.]
Today there are more than 1,000 Marianist brothers and priests, about 400 sisters and thousands of lay Marianists, including members of Common Bond, an active network and fraternity of several hundred of the former professed Marianists such as myself.
My perception of art, as well as that of the Marianists, has also expanded from those mid-century days of my first visit to the campus. During most of the 17 years I was a professed Marianist, I thought of art as primarily the specific products of artists, but I have come to think of it more broadly as work well done — art in the broadest sense. While I once thought of religious art as dealing mostly with matters liturgical, I now think all good work can be art.
I now believe art can lead to and flow from spirituality, from a simple household chore, for example, to the building of a grand gothic edifice — not only cathedrals, but environments for all sorts of human expressions of truth and beauty.
With these broad descriptions of the terms Marianist and art in mind, I now believe Marianist entities such as UD itself can be seen as Marianist art.
As the number of professed Marianists on campus declined during the past half century, the artistic expressions of their presence on campus became increasingly significant. The process is much the same as that of parents who make sure photos and other reminders of the family are provided to everyone as the family itself disperses and migrates away from its once close-knit center.
All who have learned, taught, worked or otherwise been influenced by UD can be extensions of that art, each with the potential for inspiring others to interact similarly with the Marianist charism.
The members of the Family of Mary can be the Marianist art which Blessed Chaminade envisioned and continues to inspire.
The Society of Mary wasn’t always able to be as supportive of the arts as it is today. The order’s first focus was on the academic disciplines it considered essential to the success of schools. The visual arts and music were not considered as relevant as the sciences to education and other aspects of ministry. As a result, very few Marianists majored in music or arts education during the first half of the past century.
Now a number of Marianists are accomplished artists, and the United States province has three centers of Marianist art. The profile of Brother Cletus Behlmann, S.M., of the St. Mary’s University Art Center and Studio Workshop in the Fall/Winter 2011 issue of ALIVE, the province’s magazine, indicates the regard the order has for art and those who produce it.
Several notable artists active in the United States today are former professed Marianists and UD graduates. One of the notable former Marianist artists, now known as Brother Martin Erspamer, OSB, migrated to the Benedictines. He now lives at St. Meinrad’s Archabbey in Indiana and is a designer for Emil Frei stained glass.
There are also lay Marianist artists, such as Sidney Matias of Campinas, Brazil. His distinctive and colorful art, which can be seen at the International Marian Re-search Institute at UD, has been acknowledged to be infused by a strong Marianist spirituality. He said he feels, as perhaps many Marianist artists do, “like a missionary, an evangelist using my art to try to inspire people to live like Mary.”
Marianist Art Centers
Brother Mel Meyer, S.M.
Brother A. Brian Zampier, S.M.
1256 Maryhurst Drive
St. Louis, Mo. 63122-2300
Brother Cletus Behlmann, S.M.
St. Mary’s University Art Center & Studio Workshop
2507-B 36th Street, NW
San Antonio, Texas 78228-3918
Brother A. Joseph Barrish, S.M.
Brother Louis Fouriner, S.M.
Brother John Lemker, S.M.
Brother Don Smith, S.M.
Brother Charles Wanda, S.M.
Marianist Network for Arts
Gallery St. John
4435 E. Patterson Road
Dayton, Ohio 45430-1095
Wigal was a Marianist for 17 years. He taught theology, music and art in Marianist houses of formation and schools, including UD. He has published extensively on art and artists. He received UD’s Distinguished Alumnus Award in 1985.2 Comments
Making local schools shine is just one way the Chicago chapter of UD’s National Alumni Association upholds the University’s dedication to service.
At the Alumni Leadership Conference, held on campus in mid-September, the group received the Chapter of the Year award, which recognized it for its emulation of the National Alumni Association’s mission and the University’s charge to learn, lead and serve.
Approximately every other month, the chapter cleans up inner-city Catholic schools in partnership with the Big Shoulders Fund. Volunteers deep clean the building, paint, landscape, organize classrooms and more.
“Chicago alumni, along with volunteers from other schools and service groups, team up together and get an enormous amount of work done in only three hours,” says Tim Rice ’88.
A popular alumni activity, Christmas off Campus, is another way the UD spirit is present in Chicago. The volunteers visit the Association House of Chicago, a community center in a lower income neighborhood, to decorate cookies and play games with children. Santa even visits.
“It’s the continuation of the neighborhood feel, the community feel, where you can walk down Evanston and hang out at your friends’ houses,” chapter co-president Jason Capone ’07 says.
This sense of community is one reason Chicago is so unique.
“It has a great Midwest feel,” Capone says of the city. “Everyone is active and likes to support each other. You always run into other alumni. If you are wearing a UD shirt, you are guaranteed to meet people who went there.”
If alumni in the Chicago area want to go to a bar where everyone knows their name, the place to be is Finley Dunne’s. From gathering to watch men’s basketball games to participating in a Euchre league, the establishment hosts many alumni activities.
The neighborhood bar is so popular that graduates hang out there outside of alumni events, says Capone.
As co-president of the chapter, Capone enjoys having the opportunity to take part in so many activities.
“The Dayton spirit is unique, and to continue to meet people who represent that is so rewarding,” he says. “It is also a chance to give back to the school that gave us so much.”
What is your favorite Chicago dive restaurant?
“TANGO SUR on Southport. You can get a great steak for a great price, and it is BYOB.” —Kevin Higley ’11
“Man, that’s hard in a great city like Chicago. I’d have to say THE BIG EASY for quick grub, and PUBLICAN for great beer and food.” —Steve Vandorn ’07
“THE OTHER SIDE BAR, off of Clark and Arlington. Not only does it have great drink specials, awesome food and a really fun environment, it’s always filled with the sweet smell of garlic bread.” —Caitlyn Andre ’10
“JAKE’S PUB on Clark.” —Charlotte Pederzol ’06
“KUMA’S CORNER. People first try this place because of the novelty — very small, risqué artwork, very loud heavy metal music playing, heavily inked servers and bartenders. But take all that away and you’re still left with some of the most outstanding hamburgers in the city.” —Pete Roccaforte ’02
“EPPY’S DELI … classic deli sandwiches and the home of temperature soup, soups that are priced on the outside air temperature of the day.” —Terry Stewart ’09
“I’m a sucker for a PORTILLO’S hotdog, even if it is a chain. Ask any Chicago-raised UD student — we all craved Italian beef sandwiches and/or hot dogs while away at school.” —Jennifer Cheney ’11
“My favorite dive restaurant would have to be TOP NOTCH BEEFBURGERS. They have the best burgers and shakes — definitely a local spot.” —Meagan Marion ’11
“PANES BREAD CAFE, at the corner of Wellington and Sheffield. They serve hot sandwiches and bake their own bread.” —Mike Wiora ’09
“GREEK TOWN GYROS.” —Beth Bracco ’81
“OLD TOWN PUB, for their pizza.” —Katie Wenstrup ’06
“WILD GOOSE.” —Lauren Hausmann ’08No Comments
Father Jim Fitz, S.M. ’68 is vice president for mission and University rector. “I have been encouraged by the breadth of the interest across campus in Blessed William Joseph Chaminade,” says Fitz, whose office is coordinating UD’s Chaminade Year celebration, which runs through January. Celebration details are at www.udayton.edu/rector/chaminade250.
It was very sad recently to read that the Marianists had left San Francisco after 125 years. At which school in the U.S. is found the oldest Marianist presence? —Ernest Avellar ’49, Hayward, Calif.
University of Dayton is the oldest. The school opened in 1850 and it evolved into UD; UD had a high school section that moved to Chaminade High School, which is now Chaminade Julienne. We still sponsor Archbishop Riordan High School in San Francisco; there are no longer any Marianist religious, but we still promote the Marianist charism there. We withdrew because we have fewer religious and we just cannot be present in all the places we were before. Also, we respond and adapt to change, so we have moved into new ministries based on the gifts of our members, such as Brother Bob Donovan, a medical doctor working with the homeless in Cincinnati’s Over-the-Rhine neighborhood.
Why isn’t Good Friday a holy day of obligation? —Kathy Waldron ’80, Canal Fulton, Ohio
A holy day of obligation is a required day to attend the celebration of the Eucharist, and Good Friday is the one day during the liturgical year when the church does not celebrate the Eucharist.
Does UD still have a retreat program called the CARE Weekend? —Mary Puleo Kuenzig ’80, Mason, Ohio
There’s not a CARE retreat anymore. Adaptation and change are characteristics of Marianist education, so the retreat program has changed. There is still a very strong retreat program, but the forms have evolved based on the interests of students, for example the More 2 Life retreat and the Metanoia retreat. To get in touch with former participants, you can look up their names through the online alumni network at www.udayton.edu/alumni.
When I have missed our sons — three have attended UD — I know Mother Mary is there to watch over them. Who created the wonderful icon, which is on several buildings? —Lisa Brackmann, Cincinnati
Brother Gary Marcinowski created the original design, and Brother Brian Zampier later turned it into a greeting card. The illuminated image of Mary and child can be seen on Miriam Hall and College Park Center.
What advice do you give to alumni and students for staying in touch with our beloved Marianist family after they have left UD? —Emily Klein McFadden ’09, Cleveland
It depends on where a person lives. At www.marianist.com is a directory of Marianist lay communities and religious communities (the Society of Mary and the Marianist sisters). You can also connect to FamilyOnline and see the Marianist lay communities map (www.marianist.com/?page_id=1198). Of course, you can always contact our office at 937-229-2899 to connect with UD Marianists.
I have a hard time explaining what it means to be a Marianist. Can you give me an “elevator speech”? —Clare Roccaforte ’02, Chicago
A Marianist is a disciple of Jesus Christ, the son of God become the son of Mary for the salvation of all. Mary, for us, is a model disciple because she heard the word of God and she said yes to it. Her yes allowed the word of God to be incarnated in the world. So we as Marianist religious imitate her yes to the word of God and incarnate it in the world through community and mission. In community, we try to live the Gospel values so people can see them. Mission is outreach to build the kingdom of God in the world based on what the needs of the time are. That’s an elevator speech depending on how many floors — we could go longer.
How do you reconcile good fortune and God’s many blessings with the pain and suffering of so many innocent people? —George Kooluris ’66, Bronxville, N.Y.
That’s one of the theological questions for the times. Terry Tilley, who was our former religious studies chair, wrote a whole book on it: The Evils of Theodicy. Some of the suffering in our world can be attributed to the choices people make. God loves us but God leaves us free, so people make choices that are not the choices that even God would want us to make. But I do not have a good answer for every illness or natural catastrophe, except to do what Mary did and stand with people who are suffering. Like Mary, I can be compassionate and caring and do what I can to alleviate suffering.
For our spring issue ask Peg Mount, a Marianist Educational Associate, parent of two UD alumni and longtime administrative assistant in the department of engineering technology; she has worked at UD 21 years. Email your question to email@example.com Comment
Crystal Michelle knows how to get your heart going — through dance. Michelle, the liaison between Dayton Contemporary Dance Company and ArtStreet, is teaching UD students how to move their bodies in new, creative ways. DCDC is serving its second year as community artist in residence at UD.
Using DCDC artistic director Debbie Blunden-Diggs’ concepts of what dance is, Michelle has five easy ways to get your body moving, illustrated here by DCDC dancer Alexis Britford.
1. Make shapes with your body Think out of the box — literally. “You can use shapes as they exist in nature to inspire the architecture of your body,” she says.
2. Take up space Dancing can be stationary or “locomotor” (in other words, moving from point A to point B). Explore the different degrees of movement as you work it out in the room around you.
3. Experiment with tempo To really get going, play around with moving your body in rhythm with various types of music.
4. Break the rules Have fun and think creatively. “Don’t be afraid to be upside down or sideways. Use your entire body,” she says.
5. Learn the five levels of movement Now that you’ve got the beat, try lying down, sitting, kneeling, standing or jumping. Challenge yourself to layer these heights, making shapes to tempos and levels.1 Comment
Wintertime is often marked by the stark contrast of cold, bleak landscapes and warm, jubilant holiday festivities. When famous Daytonian poet Paul Laurence Dunbar published the hopeful seasonal sonnet “Chris’mus is a’comin,” he had one year left to live.
New York-based publishing house Dodd, Mead and Co. printed the poem in 1905.
Dunbar was in his early 30s at the time, depressed after separating from his wife and suffering from a progressively worsening case of tuberculosis, for which he had been falsely prescribed alcohol as a cure. Still, Dunbar continued to write and a physician eventually gave him a proper diagnosis. This doctor sent him to Colorado to recover, where he made great progress. For a moment, all seemed calm.
“He thought he was cured,” said Herbert Woodward Martin, UD professor emeritus and renowned Dunbar scholar.
In light of his improving health, Dunbar returned to Dayton. But the weather during the journey exacerbated his condition again, and he died in 1906 in his mother’s home.
Nonetheless, the poet’s work continued to circulate in the decades following his death. In 1907, Dodd, Mead and Co. published a small book titled Chris’mus is a’Comin & Other Poems, to be used as a Christmas gift.
The booklet was nearly the size of a woman’s hand, printed in red with touches of gold. The title poem, written in African-American dialect, takes up the first two pages.
Martin said part of the enjoyment in the poem comes from the anticipation of the holiday. Dunbar created a natural dialogue that made this poem highly accessible for black and white readers alike.
One copy of the Christmas booklet was gifted to Mrs. C.J. Brooks, the sender’s name illegible in winding cursive.
This copy made its way to an auction in New York where an agent for Victor Jacobs — a man well known to those familiar with UD’s special collections and rare books — purchased it.
Finally, UD acquired this copy of the book in the 1980s. While the rest of the Dunbar works in the Victor and Irene Jacobs Collection are housed on the second floor of Albert Emanuel Hall — accessible from Roesch Library only after passing through a tunnel and unlocking stacks that are alarmed — Nicoletta Hary, curator of special collections at UD libraries, keeps this tiny volume in her office.
“It’s a lovely little book representative of the time when it was published,” she said.
Martin said Dunbar’s presentation of real characters in his poems, novels and stories makes his work enjoyable to read.
“That is the great value in his fiction and in his poetry. There were real people in these poems, they had genuine voices and they had something to say.”No Comments
Jon Gruden ’86 is busy on Sundays.
The Monday Night Football analyst and an ESPN crew of 120, who roll into town the day before, take over a hotel banquet room, setting up eight flat-screen TVs to keep tabs and take notes on all the day’s games, planning what they’ll integrate into the Monday broadcast.
For three Sundays this season, add to Gruden’s schedule meetings with alumni.
Gruden, a Super Bowl-winning head coach and honorary chair for the Campaign for the University of Dayton, took time out to meet with guests in Tampa, Fla. (Colts versus Buccaneers), Dearborn, Mich. (Bears versus Lions), and East Rutherford, N.J. (Dolphins versus Jets).
Attendees asked about his ESPN schedule — which includes an early Tuesday flight back to the office to start analyzing tapes — and about his UD days under football coach Mike Kelly.
It’s important to surround yourself with really good people, he told his audience, and to work hard and to be open to opportunities to extend yourself.
Gruden just took one of those himself. He’ll be busy football Sundays for the next five years, having recently signed a five-year contract with ESPN Monday Night Football.No Comments
Carmen Riazzi traveled to Dayton in the early 1950s for a routine basketball recruiting visit, looking to see if the University of Dayton would be the right fit for an eager and earnest kid from Erie, Pa.
He’s been here ever since.
After a standout college basketball career that included two trips to the NIT championship game, Riazzi ’57 made the Dayton area his home, marrying a University graduate and raising 10 children in nearby Kettering, Ohio.
Many of those children — and a good number of grandchildren — flanked Carmen Riazzi and Ann Fitzgerald Riazzi ’59 during an on-campus ceremony in late September as the University recognized the family for its gift to the athletics department.
In honor of the Riazzi family’s contribution, the men’s basketball offices in the Cronin Athletics Center will be named the Carmen J. Riazzi Basketball Suite. In a short, heartfelt speech, Carmen Riazzi said that the University and the Dayton community have been very important to him and his family, and he wanted to help make the school just as special for future student-athletes.
“We have two children who graduated from UD, and the rest have always been close with the Dayton players,” he said. “We felt very strongly that we could help and this facility was what we needed to get other recruits over here.”
Son John Riazzi, an Oakwood, Ohio, financial analyst and member of the University board of trustees, said the suite’s location adjacent to the Frericks Center was a “perfect fit,” considering that his father was a close friend of longtime athletics director Tom Frericks.
“My father came to Dayton from Erie, Pa., and didn’t know a soul here,” John Riazzi said. “The community embraced him. The University has been so good to him and my mom and our family, and we wanted to give back. The basketball program provided him a scholarship and gave him an opportunity to go to college where he wouldn’t have been able to otherwise. That put him on the right path and gave us the family life that we have.”
Carmen Riazzi was known for his hustle and work ethic as a Flyers guard, and his teams reached the NIT championship games in 1955 and 1956. The 1955-56 team was No. 2 in the nation for seven weeks — the best ranking in program history.
Riazzi was a senior captain on the 1956-57 squad, which finished 19-9 and advanced to the NIT quarterfinals. He averaged 10.4 points and 3.3 rebounds.
The September event became a gathering of Dayton basketball royalty as Flyer legends came to the ceremony to honor their longtime friend. Don Meineke ’52, Don Donoher ’54, Bill Uhl ’56, Jim Paxson ’56 and Bucky Bockhorn ’58 sat with Riazzi at a table during a reception in Kennedy Union, sharing memories of their golden era of Flyer hoops.No Comments