November 3, 1988
Volume 27, Number 2
A St. Andrews Presbyterian College Student Publication
Men And Women's Roles in Society
How different are men and women?
It is a question that has rocked our society
for the past several decades. The answers
our greatgrandfathers and greatgrandmoth
ers had to this question may not fit today’s
society anymore. But the question
persists now as it did then — are men and
It is a question that Dr. Mel Bringle
and her class of 13 St. Andrews Presbyte
rian College students are working on right
now. Bringle, an assistant professor of
religion at the college, leads the students
through a maze of different philosophies
concerning sexual differences — espe
cially the feminist philosophies — in her
“Feminist Theory” class.
“We are looking at the questions of
men’s and women’s roles in society,”
Bringle said. “We are studying how these
roles might be grounded in biology,
psychology and religion.”
Bringle’s class is discussing three
identified forms of late 20th Century
feminism — Cultural Feminism, Liberal
Feminism and Post Structural Feminism.
Each form defines gender in different
Liberal temmists believe that both sexes
are first and foremost human beings and
are fundamentally equal. As a result of
this, men and women would have equal
chances of success in virtually any
endeavor if given equal opportunities.
“This type of feminism does promote an
egalitarian spirit,” said Bringle in praise of
egalitarian feminism. “But it doesn’t ac
knowledge the relevance of the different
experiences of men and women.”
In Post Structural Feminism, the tradi
tional two genders are set aside. Multiple
gender options are recognized, including
distinctive gender identities for gay men
“The message of these feminists is that
there is a variety of ways to be embodied,”
said Bringle. Using texts such as the
classic “The Second Sex” by Simone de
Beauvoir and “Feminist Theory” by
Josephine Donovan, Bringle said her class
is getting the kind of exposure to femi
nism that most graduate-level courses
In addition to dealing with the different
forms of modem feminist thought,
Bringle’s class is also studying Feminism
in association to Marxism, Freudianism
The class has 10 women and three men
enrolled. Three St. Andrews professors
are also sitting in on the course.
“This is the most exciting class I’ve
taught,” said Bringle. “It’s great to see
students grow and understand themselves
in their thoughts about feminism. “I
have one student who has changed from
being a Liberal Feminist to a Cultural
Feminist in the course of a year. People
change their opinions the more they leam
and grow.” Bringle describes herself at
present as a Post-Structuralist. But, then
again, feminism is evolving everyday.
“Cultural feminists believe that women
are essentially different from men,” said
Bringle. “This difference includes such
things as a distinctive writing style, a more
pacifist, constructive value system and
more a sense of special bonding or ‘sister
hood’ among women.
Jeffrey to Receive
Jazz Musician and college professor Paul
Jeffrey is the 1988 recipient of the Sam
Ragan Award, presented annually by St.
Andrews Presbyterian College.
The award will be presented to Jeffrey at
8 p.m. on Nov. 3 in a special meeting of
the St. Andrews Fortner Writers’ Forum in
the College’s Vardell Building Audito
rium. Recipients of the Ragan Award are
recognized for their long-term contribu
tions to the arts in North Carolina.
Jeffrey, who is the director of jazz
studies at Duke University in Durham,
was the primary moving force behind the
creation of the N.C. Umbria Jazz Festival
held in the Triangle each year. Originally
tilled “Umbria at Duke” when it started in
1984, the jazz festival has attracted such
stars as Wynton Marsalis and the vener
able singer Betty Carter.
The Umbria, named for the Umbria Jazz
Festival held each year in Perugia, Italy,
has been compared to Charleston’s
Spoleto Festival in its potential. Jeffrey,
“Cultural feminism portrays women as
more patient than men, as more intuitive
and less linear in their thinking.”
Bringle said this school of feminism lends
to create a sense of community among
men and women and a celebration of
men’s distinctive culture. But, she added
that it can foster insularity and destruc
tively stereotypical images of women and
N.C. Arts Council
Gives S A Two Grants
bom in New York City in 1933, studied at
Ithaca College. He later recorded four
albums as a saxophone soloist and
bandleader. And he recorded with Dizzy
Gillespie, Lionel Hampton, Charles
Mingus, Charles Moffett and Sam Rivers.
Jeffrey also performed with Illinois
Jacquet, B.B. King, Clark Terry, Count
Basie and Theionious Monk.
The Ragan Award is named for Sam
Ragan, editor of “TTie Pilot” in Southern
Pines and Poet Laureate of North Caro
lina. Ragan is also an adjunct professor at
St. Andrews. .
Previous Ragan Award wmners include
former N.C. Secretary of Cultural Re
sources, Sara Hodgkins of Southern Pmes;
executive director of the Reynolda House
in Winston-Salem, Nicholas Bragg, ay
etteville Times” editor Roy Parker;
founder of the International FesU^ of
Dance in Durham, Ella Fountain ^att; and
Robert Mason, president of the eymou
Center for the Arts in Southern Pmes.
Arts Council recently gave St. Andrews
Presbyterian College two grants total
$6,700 to support the college’s Fortner
Writers’ Forum and the literary magazine
St. Andrews Review.
The Fortner Writers’ Forum, celebrating
its 20th anniversary, received $2,500. The
money will pay for the Black Mountain-
Lecture and Reading Series. The Review
received $4,200. The Black Mountain
Series will include a Nov. 17 poetry
reading by Thomas Meyer and Jonathan
Williams. During the college’s winter
term (Jan. 9-Feb. 2,1989) 1974 St.
Andrews graduate Tom Patterson, execu
tive secretary of the Winston-Salem based
Jargon Foundation, will conduct three
lectures and readings.
Patterson is the author of “St. EOM in
the Land of Pasaquan,” which received
rave rewiews from the New York Times
and the Village Voice among others.
Jargon has published many of the Black
Mountain writers, including Joal Oppen-
heimer, Robert Creely and the late Charles
Olson. A schedule of the readings will
ba released later.
“We couldn’t survive without funding
of this sort,” said founder of the St. press
and the Writers’ Forum, Ron Bayes.
Bayes is Writer-In-Residence at St An
"Without folks like the N.C. Arts Council
and our individual contributors we
wouldn’t be able to keep on giving North
Carolina the kind of work that we’ve been
sharing now for 20 years.”