Letters to the Editor

The cover of the summer issue of WELLESLEY magazine displayed a photo of Tatiana Ivy Moise '21 wearing a mask, with Galen Stone Tower in the background.

The Hallmarks of Wellesley

Despite the pandemic, your magazine remains beyond exceptional and a joy to read. My time at Wellesley, and my memories thereof, ended a staggering 36 (ouch) years ago, but my pride as an alumna never fades. Your publication only makes me even more proud as it highlights the ongoing high level of intellect, innovation, and forward thinking that are the hallmarks of Wellesley.

Lynne Bronnenberg Emken ’84, Winston-Salem, N.C.

Savoring the Magazine

It has taken me four days to read—savor, really—the fall ’20 issue of Wellesley. Thank you for the quality and variety of the articles. Thank you for shaving eight pages off this issue. It makes me feel a bit better about efforts to control not only costs but resources. Thank you for keeping our costs for this magazine free. It fosters incentive to send even a small check when possible. Keep up the excellent work—and keep well.

Florence Craig Smith ’60, Webster, N.Y.

From a Physician

Thank you for your excellent journalism through these trying times. As a physician who could not have gotten into med school without the support I received at Wellesley, I found pages 6–15 of the fall ’20 issue especially interesting (“Window on Wellesley” articles about student life and the College’s work to support in-person teaching during the pandemic). As a woman of color who is enraged by the injustice I have seen over the last year in the news, and in the wards of my hospital, my heart ached reading pages 20–31, but I am so thankful that the information was shared (“Remembering Zoe,” with its sidebar “An Unequal Pandemic,” and “The True Cost of Change”). Thank you for doing what you do. I look forward to reading the next issue.

Serena Liu ’13, M.D., Fremont, Calif.

Racism Kills

Reading the powerful article by Karen Grigsby Bates ’73 about the COVID-19 death of Zoe Mungin ’11 (“Remembering Zoe,” fall ’20) immediately transported me back to the painful menstrual cramps that I first suffered during my sophomore year at Wellesley. Increasingly debilitated, over the years, by excruciating periods, I refused to accept the dismissive response from white health-care professionals about my monthly agony. Fifteen years after downing a Darvon capsule and a glass of Harveys Bristol Cream—both proffered by a Caz dorm mate—to ease my misery, I was finally treated for severe endometriosis at Stanford University Hospital. The changemakers? A psychotherapist and an internist who took my medical concerns seriously and acted in kind. The common denominator? They were both Black women. It’s no longer news. But I’ll repeat it in memory of Ms. Mungin and Dr. Julie Butler ’79 (also mentioned in the article): Racism kills. Case closed.

Evelyn C. White ’76, Halifax, Nova Scotia

On “Remembering Zoe”

A selection of the many tweets responding to “Remembering Zoe” by Karen Grigsby Bates ’73 in the fall ’20 issue:

I’m so glad to read more about @zoemungin. A loss for us all that she is not here and writing and teaching. @Wellesleymag
@SejalShahWrites (Sejal Shah ’94), Via Twitter, Rochester, N.Y.

I miss @zoemungin very much. Thank you @karenbates for interviewing me for this lovely tribute to her.
@diamonde (Diamond Sharp ’11), Via Twitter, Brooklyn, N.Y.

This is everything. We miss you so much, Zoe.
@AlyssaSketchd (Alyssa Torres ’09), Via Twitter, Bronx, N.Y.

We miss Zoe so much and are grateful we got to interview her in 2015. Her writing is absolutely stunning. Thank you Diamond, @karenbates and @Wellesleymag for this tribute and for including our interview with her.
@wellesleyunderg (Wellesley Underground), Via Twitter, wellesleyunderground.com

Such a well done tribute. It was a good call to read it after work.
@cleoc87 (Cleo Hereford ’09), Via Twitter, Lynn, Mass.

Author Fan-dom

In response to “Now You See Me,” a review of This Is One Way to Dance, by Sejal Shah ’94:

OMG, I just read my @Wellesley magazine and learned that @SejalShahWrites is a fellow alumna and English major! Hoop + Founders 4 evr.
@MedievalRobots (Elly Truitt ’97), Via Twitter, Philadelphia

Lovely review of @SejalShahWrites’s This is One way to Dance by @Sidkanmani in the @Wellesley alumnae magazine @Wellesleymag
@BinaShah (Bina Shah ’93), Via Twitter, Karachi, Pakistan

I Recognize …

Regarding the picture of the two African American students from 1971 (Class Notes opener, fall ’20): I can identify the young lady with the straight hair style as Rhonda Wrenn ’74, I think. I can’t identify the other girl by the large Afro, even though back in those days, I had one of largest, too! (Check out my graduation photo.)

Jan “Lisa” Foy Wright ’73, Cincinnati, Ohio

In These Times

During these trying times, it might do well to add some grains of humor to our repetitive diets (re: Endnote—“Fried Rice Days,” fall ’20). To that end, I offer a rewrite, as follows, of Dorothy Parker’s famously witty couplet:

Rice is nice. …
But liquor is quicker!

An aside to the editor: Lovely childhood holiday pictures of the three adorable Hummer sisters (“From the Editor,” fall ’20). Sometimes I think it was better when cameras had less film capacity. It made us save it for only the most promising pictures.

Doris Schaffer O’Brien ’54, Las Vegas