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Described as a "Vassar College legend," Helen Drusilla Lockwood received her bachelor's degree from Vassar inearned her master's in Intellectual History in from Columbia University, and went on to teach in Vassar's English Department from At Vassar, Lockwood developed several innovative courses that pushed her students to challenge their basic assumptions, avoid unsupported generalization, and think for themselves. In ificant ways, Lockwood followed and extended the innovative pedagogical practices of her teachers in the English Department: Wylie, Gertrude Buck, and Mary Yost.

Her colleagues on the faculty recall that Lockwood "had a lively sense of a tradition of great teaching at Vassar: a tradition of pioneering and originality. She believed, then, that there was a tradition to perpetuate here, and she perpetuated it in her own way".

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In fact, Lockwood even garners a brief mention in The Group, Mary McCarthy's autobiographical novel about eight members of her class Vassar class of One character's main interest in college had been journalism, and "her favorite course had been Miss Lockwood's Contemporary Press". Lockwood's teaching has been characterized as "stunningly innovative" and "challenging," and she is described as someone who "did Girls looking for sex Lockwood suffer fools gladly".

As Rita Rubinstein Heller, the chronicler of the Bryn Mawr program points out, Lockwood "was respected, but feared, by almost two generations of Vassar women, as well as her Bryn Mawr blue collar women". In describing Lockwood's approach to life and teaching, colleague Barbara Swain writes that "[t]he challenge to know what you really think and are, to find your "basic assumptions" and discover what has molded you, characterized her approach to everyone. This was the knife-point with which she probed all the minds, young and old, sluggish or lively, with which she worked.

This emphasis on forcing students to examine their "basic assumptions" also is evident in the following passage from economist Caroline Ware, who, like Lockwood, attended Vassar and later taught at Vassar and at the Bryn Mawr Summer School for Women Workers: " S he was a great teacher by any dimension. She was very unique—one of the very best. She had a way of posing the relevant questions which took the person outside the bounds of expectation. At Vassar she was legendary for coming into a class of freshmen, looking around and saying, 'I suppose there are some of you here who still believe in God.

Like her mentors Girls looking for sex Lockwood the English Department, Lockwood pushed her students to question commonly accepted knowledge. In ificant ways, Lockwood's approach can be viewed as a reaction against patriarchal and conservative approaches.

She wanted her students to think for themselves, to examine rather than simply reproduce traditional assumptions. Not all students, though, appreciated Lockwood and her approach to teaching. The case, which generated newspaper articles, even attracted the attention of the House of Representatives, where Rep. Carroll Reece of Tennessee presented Fellers's side of the issue, making his statements part of the Congressional Record. According to Swain, Lockwood and Vassar were charged with "atheism, liberalism, collectivism, socialism, and communism—all at once! Lockwood was steeped in the college and its traditions even before she entered the gates of Vassar.

Both her mother and aunt were members of the Vassar class ofas Vassar president Alan Simpson recalled in a Convocation address, "tales of their college experiences were household stories". At Vassar, Lockwood was a serious student, who, in addition to her studies, participated actively in debate, and tutored in Latin and English. After graduating from Vassar, she taught for a brief time at a New Jersey public school, next worked two years at a Massachusetts girls' school, and then taught for six years at the Baldwin School in Byrn Mawr.

Lockwood taught two semesters in Bryn Mawr's newly created Summer School for Women Workers in Industry, later serving as its director of English studies and as a representative on its Board of Directors. As Heller points out, "extant Lockwood syllabi provide a striking illustration of the tough-minded liberal empowering workers through explicit skill development". InLockwood returned to graduate school for three years, studying first at the Sorbonne in Paris and then completing her doctorate in Comparative Literature at Columbia University.

Lockwood's interest in workers and labor history carried over into her graduate work at Columbia. According to Swain, Lockwood later told her that she found her teaching experience at the Bryn Mawr Summer School to be "'devastating. In her dissertation, Lockwood examined the writing of workers in England and France from Her dissertation, Tools and the Manwas published by Columbia in In her study, says Swain, Lockwood "included some of English worker-poets, but gave detailed s of French workers, those who wrote both poetry and articles during those years".

According to Swain, Lockwood's study reassured her that "'the people'— the workers — could find profit in the art of the middle class, and they had demonstrated their power to find their own voices. Lockwood continued her connection to the Bryn Mawr School and its successors for some forty years by either serving on the board, planning and supervising the English program, or taking part in the Arts Workshop.

After completing her dissertation, Lockwood taught composition in the English Department at Wellesley College for two years. She then returned to Vassar in as an Assistant Professor of English and remained until her retirement inchairing the English Department from In andshe made "substantial gifts" to Vassar's Center for Black Studies. She died inleaving an estate of six million dollars to Vassar.

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Lockwood left this unrestricted estate to the college "with the hope that my interest in the quality of teaching and my concern with pioneering in the reinterpretation and deepening of a liberal education will be remembered". One tangible outcome of this gift is the Helen Drusilla Lockwood wing of the library, which, as Heller points out, "now stands as a memorial to the formidable 'HDL'.

Lockwood's typical Sunday letters to her family—"Dear people"—for instance, were, according to Simpson, "seldom less than fourteen s and occasionally as many as twenty-four". These letters offer an inside glimpse of her life at Vassar: "how she is getting on in her courses, what she thinks of her teachers, her calls on the faculty, her attendance at chapels, lectures and concerts, her work in debate, her friendships and roommate troubles, and all the fun and games and tears that came her way.

The letters provide a detailed and fascinating record of the growth of Lockwood's intellectual powers, her self-awareness, and her interest in social issues. In particular, they document quite explicitly the profound influence that her participation in college debating had on her development and her subsequent career and life choices.

During her college years at Vassar, Lockwood participated strenuously and successfully in debate. This participation came through her sophomore argumentation course, taught by Mary Yost, and the college's two debating societies, T. Lockwood had debated in high school, and her mother had given Helen her Qui Vive pin when she entered Vassar. In a article entitled "Past was Real: It was Earnest," Lockwood stressed the popularity and broader political ificance of these early debating societies: "So long had it been taken for granted that Vassar women would be spokesmen in their communities.

Everyone belonged. In her first year, Lockwood already was looking forward to Yost's sophomore-level course in argumentation, which was closely connected with debate. It is almost impossible to exaggerate what this activity did to sharpen her most characteristic intellectual powers, the capacity for close analysis, for rapid organization, for clear-cut exposition, and for relentless criticism. These committees participated in the inter-society debate between Qui Vive and T. Well I was so thrilled I could hardly work. InLockwood served as the chair of the Qui Vive debate committee.

In the debate, the societies debated the following resolution: "That our present immigration laws be amended by the passage of the Gardner Bill, advocating the literacy test. Redmond, from City College. Although Lockwood's team did not win, she was undaunted by the loss and already was making plans for next year's "big debate": "T he great event is over and though the decision was given in favor of we are all very happy for they had a hard fight to win.

Miss Yost said that we far surpassed T and M's Junior debating. She added that if we improved next year as much as T and M had since last year, nothing could defeat us. So you see that we are all feeling that work well done is victory and are already making plans for next year. The blot above is not due to tears but I spilled some water in fixing my flowers. According to Swain, the qualities that Lockwood later stressed in her own teaching were "[l]ogic, inductive reasoning, and structure.

As a teacher at Vassar, Lockwood taught first-year composition, critical writing, American Literature, and Girls looking for sex Lockwood Romantic poetry. She also developed Girls looking for sex Lockwood courses that enacted her socially conscious pedagogy: The Contemporary Press and Public Discussion.

The Vassar College Catalogue describes The Contemporary Press course as the "[s]tudy of the presentation of contemporary artistic and social problems in selected periodicals and newspapers of America and Europe. Each student will work on a chosen subject throughout the year and present her Girls looking for sex Lockwood in a series of articles. According to Lockwood's "Outline" for the course, "This course aims at defining democratic processes of discussion and effective communication of matters of public concern. Speaking to different audiences, discussion in conferences, cross questioning, working toward a consensus of opinion.

Practice in finding issues, defining terms, and marshaling evidence. Lockwood's emphasis on critical thinking and a broader social consciousness is evident in undated course notes on EnglishThe Contemporary Press. Lockwood clarifies that she uses the term Contemporary Press "generally to apply to problems of present day communication rather than to newspapers alone, for they are all interrelated.

Students also completed surveys in Poughkeepsie or at the college and then reported the in news stories and features. In addition, students were to examine "the way life works. This exercise presupposes that the students cannot get far with reporting or analysis without knowing their own presuppositions. They usually find this a surprising and important exercise. In writing their reflections, students applied critical analysis to their own values to become aware of the different social norms and assumptions that shaped their lives and their own thinking processes.

The asment implied that the course might cause students to change or rethink some of their long-held beliefs. Similar pedagogical goals were evident in Lockwood's Public Discussion course. In her "Notes on EnglishPublic Discussion," written 21 June at the time of her retirement, Lockwood presents the key principles of the course, asserting, " Public Discussion is an alternative to war and to conformity without consent.

It involves both his logic and his emotions. It involves his use of voice and his whole body; his written outlines and his oral presentation. Like many contemporary rhetoricians, Lockwood viewed public discussion as ificant because it provided an alternative to violence; and like Buck and Yost, she emphasized the need for a democratic process, one that blended reason and emotions.

Lockwood explains also, in her "Notes," that students are slow to embrace these principles; however, their acceptance of them "is crucial if there is to be the mutual respect based on recognized need of each other without which the processes of democracy are impossible.

The course's political dimensions and emphasis on group problem-solving skills are evident in Lockwood's discussion of elements that have been part of year's courses. Near the end of the term, for example, students typically studied parliamentary procedure, and the class would follow Robert's Rules of Order for at least one week. Some years, Lockwood noted, students presented "some very interesting and lively" panel discussions over the local radio stations. In addition, students spoke at various county meetings, helped with elections, and assisted in planning a weekend conference.

In diverse ways, Lockwood's course prepared Vassar women for participation in political organizations; it prepared them to be agents of change in their communities. A ificant aspect of Lockwood's curriculum at Vassar and at the labor schools with which she was affiliated was a stress on the connection between what happens in the classroom and broader society. This belief was evident, as Alan Simpson noted, as early as her college days: "I want thinking to be followed by doing," Lockwood wrote at that time, "Emerson says that character is more important than brains, that a 'great soul will be strong to live as well as strong to think.

Students at Vassar shared in the development of participation in the community. The vision of social responsibility and pubic service whether volunteer or paid, has pervaded the climate of the college. She volunteered in the social centers in Poughkeepsie and helped them [through fund drives] financially.

She expected to take part in making the college community. Gertrude Buck. Laura Wylie. The History of English at Vassar College. Daniels, Elizabeth A. Gaines, Billie Davis. Folder 1. Heller, Rita Rubinstein. Lockwood, Helen D. Helen Drusilla Lockwood Papers. Letters to her parents.

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Simpson, Alan. Poughkeepsie, NY: Vassar College, Swain, Barbara. United States.

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Helen Lockwood. Helen Lockwood's photograph in the Vassarion. Lockwood's American Culture seminar in

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