Thursday, May 31, 2012

Another Failure of Richard H. Brodhead

✓ Kaboom. Much hyped business school degree program in Mideast crashes
Posted on LieStopper May 30, 2012 by DukeCheck

In a major blow to the Brodhead Administration’s grandiose international ambitions, the Fuqua Business School announced late Wednesday afternoon that it is cancelling the Masters in Management Studies degree program (MMS) that is scheduled to begin in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, in just a few days.
The announcement comes just nine months after Duke waged an unprecedented promotion campaign that underscored the importance of this new program and its strategic place in Duke’s global ambitions — even putting Coach K and the men’s basketball team in Dubai for an exhibition game amid much hype about championship prospects in the 2011-12 season.
This degree program is precisely the same as one planned for the backwater of Kunshan. This is, in fact, the first degree granting program for China that cleared the Academic Council and won final approval from the Board of Trustees. The late afternoon, bare-bones announcement from Fuqua — made after it was too late for reporters to call for additional details or ask questions — does not hint at all if the unspecified problems encountered in Dubai are also arising in China.

Dubai and Kunshan were to be just the first outposts for the MMS degree. Before he was relieved of his position, Fuqua Dean Blair Sheppard outlined for the Academic Council a “template” so the program could rapidly be added in additional cities all over the world. The Council listened but told Sheppard he had to gain its approval city-by-city.

The cancellation announcement did not mention the students who planned to begin school during June — and how their career plans are now upended. It did not say how many had signed up, whether they are just learning of the cancellation, or if Fuqua made the decision in advance and withheld announcing it publicly.

Neither is there any indication that Fuqua is prepared to help these students. The Dubai classes (as well as classes in other cities) were to be in English, so one option might be to make it possible for them to come to Durham, where a similar MMS degree will be offered starting in the fall. But that’s on the Duke Check list of possibilities — not mentioned by Fuqua.

The announcement held open a vague prospect that this program might be offered in the indefinite future in Dubai. To be precise, the official announcement only said the Dubai program is “on hold.” Which is the same as a young lady’s telling her father that she is a little ways along to being pregnant.

Interestingly, the announcement did not come from Dean Bill Boulding, who throttled back severely on some of Sheppard’s wild expansion plans after succeding him. We believe, however, that Boulding did champion the Dubai start-up.

The “tell them the bad news” assignment went to Senior Associate Dean Jennifer Francis. That’s an old management school trick to try to deflect responsibility rather than accepting accountability, and it is also a device to try to underplay the significance of an announcement.

Francis has carried some of Sheppard’s ideas through the Academic Council and is believed to have strattled loyalty to Sheppard and Boulding. She, was, however, a member of, and presumably chair of (these things are held very tight) a special Fuqua faculty committee that put cold water on the MMS program that ultimately won approval for Kunshan.

Along with other committee members, Francis threw a public hissy fit when DukeCheck published the committee’s confidential report.

Francis on Dubai: “Working through the logistics with our partners and sponsors has turned out to be more complex than originally anticipated.”

And apparently a bitter pill for Fuqua’s leadership to come to terms with and swallow, waiting until classes were about to begin and never hinting earlier of swelling problems. Early Thursday morning, a Deputy DukeChecker shook his/her head (we never reveal anything about the Deputies, the Allen Building Mole, or a new person, Mole 2). Imagine, the Deputy said, if a major American business had planned to open manufacturing in June — and on the 30th day of May had pulled the rug. Its stock would tumble.

So far as we can determine, Duke PR did not send out a general announcement to the news media. There is nothing posted either on the university-wide PR site, nor on Fuqua’s. There was a brief article posted on DukeToday, the on-line “newspaper” designed principally for employees, called to our attention immediately by a Loyal Reader. The Chronicle, publishing just once a week, now on Thursdays, missed the story. Shhhh. Don’t tell anyone!

Boulding was quoted down in the announcement talking about challenges, with no specifics. “As a global business school, we embed and connect in key regions not only to teach but also to learn. Bold initiatives — like launching a degree program in another part of the world — never come easy.”

The Allen Building Mole told us late Wednesday evening that Fuqua’s finances are taking a bloodbath because of this decision. Fuqua had Durham professors scheduled for the degree program in Dubai — as well as a larger number of adjuncts — all of whom presumably will be paid. In addition, the school waged a vigorous advertising campaign — with a full time staff in Dubai for marketing, admissions and program delivery. The staff also serves some smaller Fuqua programs, including a nine-day stop over by the hyped Cross-Continent MBA program that hopscotches from city to city.

There are also expensive rentals of facilities — hotel rooms. While we do not know what ground-work was done in Dubai, frequently Fuqua will construct hotel ballrooms with terraced seats and break out rooms — at substantial expense to mimic a campus lecture hall environment.

The bad financial news could not have come at a worse time. DukeCheck learned when internal Fuqua faculty reports were leaked to us last June that in four years under Sheppard, there was nothing but red ink. The year just ending was not forecast to be any better. Now, another costly blow.

Moreover, Fuqua is sure to feel the effects of the clandestine moves — so far not announced — that are occurring for the new budget starting July 1. With endowment earnings off sharply, education units all over the campus are experiencing cutbacks, the dimensions of which are still secret.

The financial cost is not all. As has been the case with Kunshan, the desire to go in all directions around the world at once has caused the Administration to lose focus on Durham.

The masters degree– the MMS — that was cancelled for Dubai is, as we noted, offered in Durham. We believe it will begin its third year in the fall semester. Originally there was to be a three-year trial, but the ever ebullient deans of Fuqua got the Academic Council to give final approval after only 14 months.

In the business world, the MMS degree is unproven and controversial.

The idea is for students to enroll in the masters degree program immediately after getting their undergraduate degree. This one year program is far less rigorous than the traditional two-year MBA, which usually embraces students who have had several years of business experience after college. Students in the traditional MBA often have support of their corporate employers – who may continue their salary, pay tuition or offer stipends. But students in the one year program pay their own way.

There is continuing uncertainty as to the value of the Masters Lite degree, as some call it. As was discussed in conjunction with the expansion to Kunshan, no one knows if employers will value this degree or if students who take it will see their careers accelerate. Many people think the Masters Lite degree was born out of the business school’s desire to add a degree-granting program — snapping up more tuition revenue — without spending much money, and the MMS emerged.

The degree has proven popular and attracted students because of the lack-luster job market: an alternative for a student leaving college, rather than taking a mundane job. What will happen when the economy perks up is anyone’s guess.

As for the similar program in China, like everything in Kunshan, the timetable has danced around, not only because of shoddy construction and other delays, but because the Chinese government has stalled its approval of Duke Kunshan University. We are now on Day 145 since President Brodhead told us approval was imminent, just to mention the latest timetable deadline. Fuqua, in its latest version, had hoped to start up the masters program in China a year from now.

Thank you for reading DukeCheck and joining in loving and watching over this great, challenged university.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

An Elias Keesee story--Skinning a Wolf

On one occasion when I was a small boy my father [Paton Keesee] caught a big wolf in a steel trap. It would show the animal too much mercy to slay it out right and we determined to punish it with the most cruel torture I could think of. Leaving the wolffast in the trap I sought the assistance of Ben Risley and Levi Graham which was willingly given. With chains, ropes and stout thongs of dressed buck hide and we tied the animal so secure that it could neither bite, kick or hardly move and with sharp knives we proceeded to remove its hide. This was horrible and was more like the work of savages, but we had been annoyed so much by them that we showed as little mercy toward wolves as the wild Indians did to white people living on the frontiers in the years gone by.
The beast lived through the terrible ordeal and when we loosed it and turned it free it got on its feet and actually ran off out of sight. This was the last seen or heard of it. It is not reasonable that it went far or lived but a short length of time.


     Fredson Bowers and the Abuse of Power in the 1970s: 
    An Episode from an Abortive Academic Autobiography.

But trouble had begun well before, in 1974. . . . That March I arranged to write an article on the Virginia Maggie: A Girl of the Streets for Katz's Proof 5 and by August 1974, during Nixon's last days, I had drawn Brian Higgins in.  I found the textual work not "scientific" but the work of a peculiarly inattentive egomaniacal mad scientist of a 1930s B movie.  Bowers had leaned over backwards in order to justify his preference for the expurgated 1896 edition over Crane's honest 1893 book.  The evidence would have supported only the most conservative Gregian text, but Bowers had talked himself into justifying the 1896 text so that the product was a titivated version of the 1896 expurgation: the mad scientist was reaching for 1893 and seizing on 1896.  Fantastic editorial decisions (such as the deletion of the fat man in Ch. 17) were justified by grotesque literary arguments.  The textual lists were a horror.  Even aside from the fact that they contained far too many unjustifiable emendations and were illogically and inhumanely designed, they were so weakened by omissions and errors as to be totally useless.  The CEAA had tied itself to the great bibliographer who had descended into fantasy, no more capable of riding herd on the expenditure of vast sums of money from the federal government than he was of rounding up and riding herd on a list of variant words.  Idealistic in those days, I wrote up my evidence with the help of Brian Higgins and submitted it to the CEAA in January 1975, asking that the seal given to Maggie be rescinded.  On 4 June 1975 the CEAA Advisory Committee refused to rescind the seal, and I was told in a letter dated 26 June that the Committee felt "that it would be inappropriate for the CEAA to explain for publications its reasons for refusing to withdraw a seal already awarded to a volume." The CEAA closed ranks around Fredson Bowers.  Worse, Katz abruptly dropped the Maggie article from the 1975 Proof then in September 1976 declined to publish it in the next Proof either.  By then, on 11 February 1975, Bowers had written to the director of the CEAA making an only slightly veiled threat: "I am not at all sure of the legal position in desealing a volume . . . .  It is a purely hypothetical situation, but a publisher of a desealed volume might question the legal basis as causing him financial harm and bring suit with punitive damages, which I suppose would be collected, if successful, from the individual members of the Committee, or possibly MLA."  He added: "It should be thoroughly understood that under the copyright laws, this communication is my private property, and that verbal dissemination as well as printed is covered by my rights--indeed any form of reference in anything that could be construed as public."  The foot of a page contained this warning, all in capitals: "CONFIDENTIAL COMMUNICATION.  NO PART MAY BE PRINTED OR REFERRED TO IN PRINT WITHOUT PERMISSION OF THE WRITER ON PENALTY OF A PROMPT LAWSUIT." On 3 April 1975, Bowers wrote to John Gerber, who was heading the committee that established the successor organization, the Center for Scholarly Editions:  "In my private and confidential view, the only person I think ought never to be considered for the committee or chairman is Hershel Parker."  The blackballing worked.  I lost opportunities to evaluate textual situations for the CSE as I had been doing for the CEAA. No one would touch the Maggie article.  I thought for months that it would be published in Analytical and Enumerative Bibliography.  The editors promised not to ask [ . . . .] to review it, but they did, before they rejected it.  Fredson had to be protected.

A lot of federal money for projects all around the country was involved--not a lot in relation to one helicopter for Viet Nam, but a lot by academic standards.  Deprived of my chance to work through textual histories of CEAA volumes, I seized other opportunities to focus in great detail on a handful of American masterpieces.  It happened that one of them had been edited by Bowers.  On 10 November 1974 I took on the chore of reviewing Bowers's Virginia edition of The Red Badge of Courage for Nineteenth-Century Fiction along with his 1972 NCR / Microcard Editions The Red Badge of Courage: A Facsimile Edition of the Manuscript.  I had made one of my casual notes in 1972 that I should reconstruct the manuscript of The Red Badge of Courage (as far as possible) and read the book that way.  I had not gotten round to it.  Now, after a time, I focused on what was wrong with Bowers's facsimile edition of the manuscript.  This elaborate, enormously expensive book, I soon realized, was not a facsimile of "The Final Manuscript."  It contained in sequential pages a facsimile (some edges carelessly cut off in the photographing) of the pages of the manuscript which Crane had given to a friend and which had ended up at Charlottesville.  It was a facsimile of the portion of the manuscript which was at Virginia--the greater part of the whole manuscript, some of which survived elsewhere and some of which was lost.  Not in sequence at all but relegated to the back by Bowers were the surviving pages of Chapter 12, the longest and by all odds the most crucial chapter in the book.  These pages were mislabeled "Discarded Chapter XII," instead of something like "Surviving Portions of Chapter 12." When the book had been the manuscript Crane was trying to sell, Ch. 12 had followed Ch. 11 and preceded Ch. 13.  It had been an integral part of the manuscript.  It was typical of Bowers, who tended to fixate on later texts and work backward from them, not to realize that the value of a facsimile edition of the manuscript would lie in presenting all the known leaves of the final manuscript in sequence, whatever institutional or private library they happened to come to rest in.  In terms of textual theory, he was more or less systematically abandoning the wise council of W. W. Greg and reverting to the advice of Ronald S. McKerrow, taking any excuse to adopt readings from a late text.  What this showed, ultimately, was a predisposition to ignore the creative process.

In November 1975, for one of the most ecstatic two hour stretches of my life, I read the first 11 chapters, then read the surviving parts of Ch. 12 and whenever possible fill out gaps with portions of the fortuitously surviving rough draft, so as to get an idea of the lost content, then read what had originally been numbered 13, and so on to the end reading the original words whenever they survived.  Fleming's self-delusion and vainglory was consistent throughout the book.  If what Crane wrote had been printed, there would have been no controversy over the young man's courage or cowardice: the text was so mangled as to be uninterpretable in any final way.  I said in the review: "This rather motley and slightly incomplete reconstruction, I wager, would be the best possible basis for New Critical demonstrations of the unity of the novel--the sort of essays which have been lavished upon mere reprints (or reprints of reprints) of the Appleton text, a text which reached its final form as the result of omissions so hasty and ill-conceived that several passages still depend for their meaning upon passages which were excised."  After I had read Red Badge almost as Crane wrote it I went back into an undergraduate class at USC and confessed that I had taught it wrong in the last class.  Sitting on the corner of the desk, a triangular tear in what a librarian called my Viet Cong pants, I passionately explained how Crane meant the title to be understood.  It was a remarkable fifty minutes, the first time anyone in the world had taught The Red Badge of Courage from the text Crane had tried so long and hard to get into print.  In the evaluations two students said I was incompetent because I had admitted not knowing how to teach a book and had taught it again.  Well, after Kent State all standards had been thrown out the window, but I would continue to teach passionately.

When published in the March 1976 Nineteenth-Century Fiction, my article contained as a final zinger my new student Henry Binder's discovery that, on the most mundane level, Bowers had faked an essential CEAA requirement, a Hinman Machine collation of first and last texts of the Appleton edition.  On 8 April 1976 Bowers wrote "Dear Parker": "if I hear of any further innuendoes about my expenditure of NEH funds, and the ethics of my work, you will be hearing from my lawyer in the matter of libel, and so will any journal that prints such remarks.  I am in fact reserving action on some statements made in this review."  He sent a copy to the editor, who scoffed at the threat.  Fredson Bowers, the most famous American bibliography of the time and at his best a brilliant expositor of copy-text theory, had become a slovenly researcher willing to fake research, a pompous, idiosyncratic literary critic, and a vehement bully who silenced critics by threats of lawsuits and who intimidated colleagues into acquiescing while he silenced genuine literary criticism. 

Monday, May 28, 2012

Wisdom from Jeffrey Meyers

At the fag-end of literary criticism, when all major authors have been exhaustively analyzed, four kinds of books are being written: rare original critiques, variations of existing ideas, thinly disguised repetitions of what has already been said[,] and sterile infatuations with structuralism and semiotics. In this decadent context a thoroughly researched biography, which is firmly based on extensive archival evidence and presents a massive quantity of new material as the basis for original interpretations, is perhaps the most valuable contribution to modern scholarship.

            —Jeffrey Meyers in his chapter on Wyndham Lewis in The Craft of Literary Biography

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Richard H. Brodhead "Troth and Consequences" Revisited

Long-festering resentments may lie behind the reckless rush to the wrong judgments which Brodhead displayed toward James Van de Velde, Hershel Parker, and the coach Michael Pressler and the falsely accused Lacrosse players at Duke.

RICHARD  H. BRODHEAD: “TROTH & CONSEQUENCES” Revisited on the Renewal of his Contract as President of Duke University

               In "The Education of Richard Brodhead: Continuity and Change over Dean's 40 years at Yale" (Yale HERALD, 20 February 2004), Matthew Ferraro said farewell to a fixture who would soon become President of Duke University. Behind closed doors, Brodhead reflected confidentially on the years after his arrival as a freshman in 1964. Brodhead had "experienced the uncertainty of the '70s as a young untenured, if popular, professor, but stayed on despite offers from other universities." He had felt constrained by the emphasis on poetry and European writers: "He calls his decision to study and teach mostly novels in his adult life 'my own act of revolt.'" [Brodhead did not, of course, revolt to the point of rethinking how novels were studied in the 1960s and early 1970s, only as perfect New Critical artifacts.] After he completed his PhD, at Yale, Brodhead "won a choice appointment to the Yale junior faculty and began teaching," but "not everything was rosy." There were "disappointments." Brodhead remembered the 1970s "as an 'incredibly dispiriting time.'" Because of inflation, faculty salaries fell 30% in buying power, and "chances at professional advancement at Yale did not look particularly promising in a department that had not tenured anyone in years." To Ferraro, behind those closed doors, Brodhead spoke with unusual candor: "It was not fun. And you might say it was particularly not fun to be an untenured professor in a university where it didn't seem like anyone would ever get promoted."

During the 1970s, Brodhead said, he was offered tenured positions at two other universities but turned both down. His patience, or passivity, ultimately paid off: "In 1980, Brodhead was awarded tenure after an excruciatingly complex process. 'That was, you can say, the beginning of a new phase of my life' he said." Ferraro passes over Brodhead's intriguing comment on the "excruciatingly complex process." It was excruciating to Brodhead, presumably, but we are not told how it was complex. "Brodhead was surprised" at being granted tenure, Ferraro says, without explaining why he was surprised. Even tenure did not make Brodhead comfortable: "Despite being tenured, however, he was not yet a full professor. Unhappy with his department, he seriously considered an offer to 'rebuild a notable English program somewhere else,' he said. He met with then-Dean Howard Lamar . . . who convinced him to stay." Lamar told Ferraro: "Of course he had no reason to worry, but I couldn't tell him that." Lamar, said Brodhead, "led me to understand that I was in a troth, and he led me to see that life might be better sometime, and soon after it was." Brodhead was named a full professor in 1985.

Brodhead had stayed on, despite a humiliatingly slow and “complex” process by which Yale decided to grant him tenure but to leave him for some years "in a troth," living on hints that the lover would take him as a bride in a legitimate public marriage. Meanwhile, the lover, Yale, could make overtures to or entertain overtures from any young, alien, trendy, and disturbingly nubile candidate on the annual marriage market. In the end, patience, passivity, deference, hunkering down and keeping his nose clean, had paid off, and Brodhead soon became chairman of the English Department and then Dean of Yale College. Everything was all right at last?

No, the "excruciatingly complex process" during which, untenured, Brodhead taught alongside his tenured teachers, many of whom were less popular with students than he, had scarred Brodhead. He had kept his mouth shut too often and too long for him to be easy with himself and his colleagues even when tenure was finally granted him without promotion to full professor. Perhaps no one can understand just how he felt. I can understand better than most. At Northwestern I took my MA and PhD in four years, as Brodhead did at Yale (Ferraro marveled at the speed!). After two years at Urbana as an assistant professor I was hired back at Northwestern, still as an assistant professor. Nominally teaching half time while working half time on the new Melville Project at the Newberry Library, I worked full time on the Melville Project, taught passionately, and picked up a few dollars from teaching novels to the Glencoe Literary Ladies. On the Melville Edition I had weighty responsibilities but no authority. That was the mid-1960s, the high triumph of the New Criticism, which stressed final product instead of process. The dominant textual theory, which also stressed final product, was perfect in the cases of simple correction but, I found, could not apply to authorial revision. I began asking questions about the creative process, but had no one to talk to until the Faulkner scholar James B. Meriwether came to Chicago. We had worked our way to similar conclusions. The day after I talked to Meriwether I started looking for a job. The chairman had reneged on a promised raise, confident that I was trapped. To be free to rethink the dominant literary and textual theories I could not stay on where I had been a graduate student. When the chairman offered a raise and tenure, he was too late.

What if Brodhead had taken one of his offers and gone away from Yale in the 1970s? What if he had encountered faculty members who were unlike him, perhaps even some men (or women) from a lower social classe? What if he had been forced to stand his ground on principles and define intellectual turf worth defending? What if he had encountered students who were not male, white, and wealthy, as his first students at Yale were? What if rather than enduring the "excruciatingly complex" process of becoming tenured at Yale he had taken earlier tenure elsewhere and had knocked about a bit, learning to deal with people quite unlike the adolescent buddies from Andover who proved to be his lifelong friends?

Had he left Yale, Brodhead might not have given rein to the demeaning and ultimately damning psychological quirks that are in the process of destroyed his reputation. For his reputation IS being destroyed. He settled with three formerly indicted Duke lacrosse players for a figure cited variously as between $18,000,000 and $30,000,000. He is being sued for his rush to judgment at Yale (James Van de Velde's lawsuit, naming Brodhead, having been reinstated last December). He was sued by Michael Pressler, the Duke lacrosse coach he fired, for violating terms of their agreement, and Duke settled with Pressler. He is being sued by three unindicted lacrosse players. He is being sued by more than thirty lacrosse players and family members for charges involving criminal conspiracies. Damningly, he had exhibited the "extraordinary moral meltdown" described in the Taylor-Johnson book, UNTIL PROVEN INNOCENT (p. 122). Brodhead will never regain a high reputation, not after the long delayed DISCOVERY PROCESSES are pushed through—and this is all aside from his strange search for an “intermediate explanation” of Dr. Anil Potti’s false claim to have been a Rhodes Scholar and the faked science with which he was treating real human beings with cancer until late in 2010.
Meanwhile, Brodhead's reputation as a scholar is being examined by a man he defamed in the New York TIMES on 23 June 2002. There he called me a "demon researcher" who showed "a single-mindedness worthy of a Melvillean hero," presumably Ahab, the captain of a doomed ship. After years of archival work I had merely "surmised" the existence of two lost books of Melville's. In fact scholars had known much about one of the books since 1960 and all about the other book since 1922. Brodhead's own academic "work" disintegrates at a skeptical touch, sometimes grotesquely, as when I pointed out that Thomas Bailey Aldrich, a man he jeered at for losing his reputation, ought to have been featured as a star pupil in THE SCHOOL OF HAWTHORNE (along with such women as Harriet Beecher Stowe, who wrote novels influenced by Hawthorne).

Brodhead had coasted to a high reputation as he had coasted through life. But something bad happened during those years of waiting, of being "in a troth." Brodhead soured. Later, when chances arose, he rushed precipitously to the wrong judgments, as if eager to punish the innocent. Brodhead fired James Van de Velde at Yale when the inept New Haven police let it be known that they had questioned him in the murder of a student. All the evidence pointed away from Van de Velde, but he had been the student's adviser, and police had questioned him. That was enough for Brodhead.

In the 1 April 2001 Hartford COURANT Les Gura described Van de Velde as a top student and athlete who graduated from Yale in 1982, then took his doctorate in international security studies from Tufts University's Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. In Van de Velde's "top secret government security clearance as a lieutenant commander in the U.S. Naval Reserve," he took "government and education positions in the U.S. and abroad for the State Department." After real-life adventures such as Brodhead had never known, Van de Velde went back to Yale in 1993 as dean of Saybrook College. "In the spring of 1997," Gura reported, "he took a leave from Yale on a Navy assignment to help monitor the status of peace in Bosnia from a base in Italy." At the time of his firing, Van de Velde was a lecturer in Yale's political science department. "With his training and combined government and education backgrounds," he was preparing to become "a television commentator on foreign affairs who also could find time to be a college lecturer."

Van de Velde had remained an athlete, a proficient even in martial arts which required the use of face masks or helmets. He was regularly described as a "handsome" man. He was flexible, adaptable, resourceful, variously competent, not a timid, cosseted man trying to believe he was really "in a troth." Was he, to Brodhead, unbearably manly? Wielding his new power, Brodhead recklessly fired him.  Van de Velde told Gura,"my life is destroyed yet there is nothing I have ever done that I feel ashamed of."

As for me, I was a "demon researcher" and Brodhead, like most of his New Critical teachers, had no idea what research was. In a 1984 book, FLAWED TEXTS AND VERBAL ICONS, I had challenged both the New Criticism and the dominant textual theory and incidentally had pointed out Brodhead's coldness in closing his eyes to Melville's agony in enlarging PIERRE, cheerful that he was left a New Critical text to toy with. Did he know how unlike him I was, a Depression Okie and Texan, forced to drop out of high school, a railroad telegrapher for seven years until I left Texas on a Woodrow Wilson Fellowship? Was I someone who could be easily sacrificed, kept from a Pulitzer in 2003 after being one of two finalists in 1997? For I was sacrificed by Brodhead, Andrew Delbanco, and Elizabeth Schultz, critics who declared that I was not to be trusted, when the evidence of my statements was right there on the pages of the book they were being paid to review. My health suffered for five years, until I began speaking out. During that time, and today, their reviews are blazoned on the Internet. Not one of them has apologized.

At Duke, we know, Brodhead once again rushed to the wrong judgment, firing the admirable lacrosse coach and prejudicing the public against the falsely accused lacrosse players by saying that whatever they did was "bad enough." As at Yale, his victims were young, healthy, and handsome men, some from families more wealthy even than those of Brodhead and his friends at Andover and Yale. Again, they were athletes in a sport which involved bodily contact and the wearing of helmets. All of them were academic achievers, and some were brilliant. Do Homeric or Shakespearean memories haunt Brodhead, so that he sees himself as Thersites in contrast to Hector or Achilles?

Seeking to understand Brodhead's strange antipathy to brilliant handsome young athletes, I can best compare him to Radney in MOBY-DICK, so irrationally determined to pulverize Steelkilt, his superior in brains and physique, or Claggart, so jealous of the handsome and innocent Billy Budd. Did the "incredibly dispiriting" 1970s enrage Brodhead so that when he gained power he used it arbitrarily against those of whom he was fiercely jealous--usually men younger, brighter, more resourceful, and far more athletic than he was? The man who fired Van de Velde, led a trio of character assassins against me (for a non-scholarly would-be biographer and another Melville critic echoed Brodhead false accusations about merely “surmising” two lost Melville books), and turned his back on the Duke lacrosse coach, the players, and their parents--this man should never have been granted the power to inflict harm.
Brodhead was already damaged goods. Van de Velde’s suit against Brodhead and Yale is reinstated but unconscionably delayed. The lawsuits against Brodhead, Duke, and Durham have been unconscionably delayed. Yet in 2012, despite the law’s long delay the discovery process is under way in two lawsuits against Brodhead stemming from his behavior toward the lacrosse players, one for “constructive fraud” and one for “obstruction of justice.” Now in 2012 it is clear that Duke, Potti, and others will be slapped with malpractice suits by the cancer patients who underwent actual treatment based on phony science—the cancer patients or surviving members of their families. Brodhead’s wistful hope that there could be some “intermediate explanation” for Potti’s difficulties will be remembered by those whose cancers advance while they were being “treated” by faked science. How much of Brodhead’s character was already formed before the years of living under a “troth” at Yale? How much of his character was warped and soured by those difficult years?