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WILK | The Power of the 2%: Our Unhealthy Relationship with Fraternity Life

Oh, Fraternities. From their stupendously shitty taste in music to their toxic environment of elitist exclusivity to their growing count of associated rape cases and deaths, what’s not to love? Sorry if that was harsh, the hook has gotta be abrasive to weed out who really wants to read the entire thinkpiece, it’ll be worth it when you get to the body paragraphs. You understand, right? It’s a surprise to absolutely no one that Greek life, at universities all across the United States, is ridden with a plethora of serious problems. So why, in spite of this universal truth, are these organizations allowed continued existence; An existence that inherently grants them power and authority?

Greek life at Cornell has evolved throughout the history of the University, inspiring camaraderie and controversy, and continues to play a profound role in the lives of students today.

Solar Flashback: It’s All Greek To Me — A History of Greek Life Policies at Cornell

Greek life is one of the oldest and most controversial systems at Cornell. The current structure of Greek life that we’re familiar with has been decades in the making, and in this week’s Solar Flashback, we wanted to take a look back at some of the most significant policy changes involving social Greek organizations. As Greek life reforms come into the spotlight once again, it’s important to understand its history in order to gain insights for future change.

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NGUYEN | Down With Fake Philanthropy!

I wiped graham cracker crumbs from my lips and gulped down one last gooey mouthful of marshmallow and chocolate as I traipsed down the Slope. It didn’t taste very good. I continued to distance myself from the Arts Quad on my descent to West Campus — and yet, I still couldn’t shake the saccharine aftertaste that the s’more left behind. Supposedly, I had consumed the s’more in the name of service. Realistically, my only takeaways were sticky fingers glued together by melted marshmallows and a $6 charge on my Venmo account.

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LEUNG | (Not) Behind Closed Doors

While my professor unpackaged the books and distributed them around the room, I felt as if I was actually witnessing a part of history; as if this was something I would look back on years from now and say, that was me he handed a copy to. That was my professor. Prof. Andrew Moisey, art history and visual studies, recently published The American Fraternity. This photobook places photos that Moisey took in an unnamed fraternity at the University of California, Berkeley, in the early 2000’s next to text that comes from a 60-year-old ritual manual that was found on the fraternity’s floor. Starting in 2000, Moisey documented his younger brother’s involvement in the fraternity, from initiation rituals to drunken parties to an untimely funeral.