By MC Love (AR’24) and Martina Duque (AR’24)
Most colleges in America treat students as consumers. Education and program have become commodified and commercialized. The problem with this is that education becomes less affordable while the model of higher education loses credibility. The colleges begin satisfying a consumer rather than holding students accountable.
By Nora Ashwood A’23
Azure, lapis, cobalt, Phthalocyanine Blue BN– “This color is also present in Lidl’s Dentalux Total Care Plus toothpaste, listed as the final ingredient.” Farizandi’s Cobalt has a brilliance close to International Klein Blue, but its hue morphs and varies in value, deeper and older– older in that it looks like a blue you remember and not a blue that is before your eyes. The blue is rich and vast and flat, but flat only until your eyes travel to the top right, to the black and (avian) orange at a 30-degree angle. The angle inverts the way you see the entire painting. Suddenly, the blue takes shape and forms an urban space of corners of buildings and too many small apartments jammed into former tenement buildings. Like the product of 3D glasses in a movie theater, the single perspectival slant transforms what is understood as a flat surface into an illusion of deep space with only a pair of black dots, like Mizar and Alcor, anchoring your eyes and keeping them from rising off the top and out of the frame, along with the rest of the shapes… Cobalt is a theatrical stage on which you can apprehend the near naturalistic renditions of light, color, and space taking shape before your eyes.
By Deena Fahed A’23
Trans exclusionary radical feminists, or TERFs, are a plague on the contemporary feminist movement. Although these “gender critical” radical feminists comprise a relatively small percentage of people who call themselves feminists, they are a very vocal minority. J.K. Rowling made headlines earlier this month for tweeting that trans acceptance is a Trojan horse for the erasure of “real women’s” identities, adding yet another chapter to her long history of platforming transphobic messages. TERFs contribute heavily to dangerous cultural narratives about trans women, often expressing a vitriolic hatred for them. These narratives contribute to real world violence – nearly half of the trans population in the US experienced some form of harassment in the past year, 47% of them have been sexually assaulted in their lifetimes, and “trans panic” in still a legally viable defense against murder charges in 40 states – and this violence disproportionately affects trans women of color and lower income trans people.
By Sabriah Al-Bahish A’23, Ky Yurchuk CE’23, Brighton Huynh CE’21
With the cold-blooded murders of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and Tony McDade, the Cooper Union Pioneer recognizes that Black Lives have, do, and will always matter. Social media has been flooded with various infographics and screenshots of text suggesting ways to support the Black Lives Matter movement and fight against systemic racism. Inherent to the modality of social media, the wider context of a lot of organizations and actions isn’t always conveyed due to (digital) space constraints. This following list includes various charities, organizations, and resources that tackle these systems through various ways; systemic racism is ingrained in almost every facet of our lives. Although we worked to cover a diverse range of issues, these organizations are by no means a comprehensive review of the multitude of people working hard to change the system. We hope that with a dedicated space for these organizations, that we can continue fighting and continue supporting the effort against institutionalized racism not only within this current flashpoint, but also throughout the future.
By Matthew Grattan (BSE ’19)
Photo by Julius Freyra (CE ’21), courtesy of Humans of Cooper Union
The third course of the mandatory humanities and social sciences core curriculum is entitled HSS-3: The Making of Modern Society. “Once I remembered that, it was ridiculous for me to say that modern society as it exists today only exists because of Europe,” said Mahmoud Khair-Eldin (CE ‘21) over the phone one night last week.
By Brian Frost (EE ’19) and George Ho (BSE ’19)
According to Professor of History Atina Grossmann, she and Professor Ninad Pandit, a post-doctoral fellow in social science, “significantly changed” the HSS-3 curriculum to include readings with non-Western perspectives. The changes are ostensibly a reaction to the HSS petition in 2016, but it is unclear how these readings are incorporated into the classroom.
Separately, Professor Sam Keene, chair of the Diversity and Inclusion Task Force, emphasized that changing the HSS curricula is entirely up to the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences; the Task Force serves an advisory role only.
By Brian Frost (EE ‘19) and George Ho (BSE ‘19)
The Department of Humanities and Social Sciences talked about the purpose of its program in relation to the three schools
with President Sparks in 2017, according to Peter Buckley, Acting Dean of Humanities and Social Sciences. “It was not generally known by the students that the faculty had already requested a full program review from the president, which is going to be announced by the president shortly. [...] It dates back to 2017, when we went to the president to say ‘look, it’s about time the overall learning objectives of HSS were examined, and we’re willing to do it.’”