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I’m a firm believer that astrology is complete nonsense. Still, I’ll admit, there are times when I’ve heard characteristics of an Aquarius, my zodiac sign, and thought to myself, “Oh my God, that’s so me.” The reason I, and so many others, are so susceptible to horoscopes is because we want to believe them. According to an article in The New York Times “Why Horoscopes Are Comforting,” the more we can predict about our surroundings, the more confident we feel about our survival. A longing for a sense of security is what influences us to listen to whatever supports horoscopes’ prognoses and disregard whatever refutes them. This, in essence, is confirmation bias at work. Confirmation bias is our impulse to be more drawn to and put more weight on evidence that aligns with our own beliefs.
In honor of Halloween, the Mirror dives into all that is creepy, weird and unsettling — all that is uncanny.
We are often attracted to uncanny situations. Stories with ghosts, the reanimated dead and unexplainable mysteries have become a vital part of our popular culture during this time of the year. During special days such as Halloween and Friday the thirteenth, people intentionally create unsettling environments. For example, they may organize events such as haunted houses in order to be fully immersed in discomforting surroundings. Similarly, Dartmouth students may find interactions scary or unsettling at places such as Greek houses. Even though Greek houses are often stereotyped as being a place for parties or social gatherings, these houses do sometimes create a somewhat troubling environment for students who are not used to a scene of hard partying.
Christie Leigh Harner, professor of English and creative writing, specializes in Victorian and 19th century literature. She has authored several papers on the subject of science and visual arts in Victorian literature. This fall, she is teaching a course on Victorian children’s literature.
What scares college students? Honestly, it’s hard to say. I’m scared by a lot. So I turned to some of my braver friends for an indication of what makes Dartmouth students quake in their boots — aside from the negative 17 degree weather. Here’s what we came up with:
What are you doing for Halloween? It’s a simple question, but one that Dartmouth students often have trouble answering. Perhaps that’s because Halloween usually comes at the end of the notorious “midterm season,” only for finals season to follow in its footsteps. Maybe, instead, it’s because Halloween seems to always trail Homecoming weekend and a hybrid “Hallow-homecoming weekend” is just too much to handle.
“Man wanted for Murder in Hanover, N.H., July 17, 1891. Known by the name of Frank C. Almy.”
I anxiously coiled my hair around my fingertips. My forehead furrowed deeper and deeper as I squinted my eyes. Soon, I grimaced — bracing myself for the coming pain. Stomach clenched, I could feel my heart beating faster and faster.
It’s freshman year. All eyes are on you. Especially when you check the countless emails coming from the College’s Listserv inviting you to attend meetings or join a new club. Upperclassmen recommend you take Computer Science 1 and to choose the Non-Recording Option to protect your GPA. Just in case. Your senior self will thank you. But graduation feels infinitely far away; you have a long, long way to go.
So many pamphlets, websites, lectures and discussions are made available to high school students to prepare them for college’s intense social transition that it’s easy for Dartmouth students to forget that they are at the College to receive an education.
Adjusting to college can be a significant challenge for all students, but a student who also has to acclimate to a new country is in an even tougher position. Students living overseas, who account for roughly 13 percent of the Class of 2022 and who come from 57 different countries, simultaneously navigate the traditional adjustments to Dartmouth’s academic rigor and an adjustment to American culture.
Nearly 50 years ago, a group of Native American students approached the steps of Parkhurst Hall with a clear goal in mind — to end the use of the Dartmouth “Indian” as the College’s symbol and mascot.
As a liberal arts college, Dartmouth offers its students many options to specialize their academic goals according to their needs and interests. Despite the flexibility the College offers, the distribution of majors is far from even. According to statistics provided by the Office of Institutional Research, the two most popular majors, economics and government, graduated 197 and 151 majors respectively for the Class of 2018. The third most popular major was computer science, which graduated 95 majors. The departments with the fewest majors were ancient history and astronomy, both with only one graduating student with a degree from the department. The numbers help shed light on how the popularities of varying departments have ebbed and flowed over the years, and how the curriculum or the faculty of a department influences its popularity.
Every student’s college experience is influenced by their parents, whether they helped choose what college to attend, what major to pursue or what activities to participate in. However, when one attends the same college as one or both parents, this influence can be compounded. Sharing a parent’s alma mater can become an act of balancing their informed advice and guidance with the desire to forge one’s own path. The advice legacy students receive from their parents can reflect the College’s changes across generations, or demonstrate that, despite the decades between two students, the spirit of Dartmouth holds true.
The landscape of Main Street Hanover has seen significant changes in recent years, notably with the departure of pizza shop Everything But Anchovies and the imminent departure of the Dartmouth Bookstore. Despite the recent loss of these mainstay businesses, downtown Hanover is no stranger to change.
When alumni come back to Dartmouth for Homecoming, they may be surprised the number of changes that have occurred at the College and in Hanover. They may be astounded by the construction of the Life Sciences Center, the addition of Skinny Pancake in downtown Hanover, the derecognition of Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity, or the changes in the bonfire tradition within the past year.
Lately, I have noticed a distressing trend: my mom receives more likes on Facebook than I do.
Dance and theater have spanned across multiple cultures, and their use as forms of expression has pervaded history. Whether it be a vivid tale of the Second Liberian Civil War turned alive by the Dartmouth Theatre Department or dances showing off the Soyeya African Dance Troupe’s pride in their heritage, movement has a unique way of expressing emotion and serving as a method of communication.
“That was so moving.” I’ve probably heard those words hundreds of times throughout my life, in reference to hundreds of different things. A performance can be moving, as can a song or a speech. Though seemingly very different, what ties these experiences together is their ability to move us outside ourselves.
Unlike most colleges that operate on a traditional calendar system, Dartmouth offers the D-Plan, or “Dartmouth Plan” which allows students to travel, find a job, get an internship or do research during their off-terms. If students have this opportunity to customize their academic calendar, where do most students spend their off-terms? According to students interviewed for this article, the most popular hubs for students to spend their off-terms are New York, San Francisco and Boston.