Literacy and Liberty

Memorial Hall
Posted by: , October 3, 2018, 3:59 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

We began our journey at Dickinson College in Memorial Hall in Old West. At the time, I did not realize that there was more to that room than simply the place where we literally signed into the college. Last Friday I was helping my sister deliver the newspapers for the Dickinsonian; one of the places she needed to go to drop the papers off at was Old West. We had time to spare, and she knew her way around the building, so with her guidance we went exploring. Memorial Hall is aptly named because it is home to many memorials on campus. Among others, there is a 9/11 memorial and a Vietnam War memorial. They commemorate the tragedies that occurred, but also give representation to the members of the Dickinson community who were a part of them. Even though it was only my sister and I walking around the room and reading the plaques, we still hardly seemed to take a breath out of the desire to keep as quiet as possible in such a solemn space. It was almost a surreal experience to read about how many Dickinson individuals were involved in those events. I can hardly imagine members of my class leaving to take part in military or be found within those tragedies and for them not to return. It would be somewhat odd to recognize the names of classmates, carved into a memorial, forever to be looked at and venerated for their loss. In “Native Guard” by Natasha Tretheway, there is a sonnet which states that the names of the soldiers will be written down in history. The following sonnet contradicts that, saying that only some names will be remembered. Memorial Hall in Old West ensures that the names of the Dickinson students and faculty who were a part of those events are forever remembered.

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Meredith–what a lovely post about a shared experience of memory and realization with your sister! And a great connection to NT’s work too. Do you find the quiet of Memorial Hall appealing, or even instructive, in any specific way? Nice job.

   Professor Seiler 10.08.18 @ 2:08 pm

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