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January 22, 1922 - Image 14

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1922-01-22

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Oxford University---Its Student Life,
Traditions and Customs
By W.,Bernard Butler land the man who defeats you in ten- never a case of drunkenness. ticipate in the debates, both that they
(Continued from last Sunday) nis or who shoots past you on the I spoke previously about the less themselves may be known by the stu-
The Englishman is greatly sur- river, dissipates with you by indul- serious attitude of the English in dents and that the leaders in debate
prised by the great crowds which wit- gence in the intoxicant, tea. their general actions and work. This may be observed with an eye to future
The social life at Oxford may be less intense manner is also shown in use in Parliament. For if a man is a
ness our athletic contests, for in his said to be of the family type in its conversations about athletics and leader in the Union, he is practically
country the "fan" is the exception. hospitality and genialty. Each man's studying. Oxford men consider it not assured of a seat in Parliament or
This is due to the Englishman's pre- college is his home, where he sleeps, quite good form to "talk shop" or to some other responsible position with
ferring to play the game himself rather eats, reads, and talks. Men are not stress .their particular studies as such the Crown.
than to watch it. - split up into such well-defined groups in their intimate over-the-table or It is practically certain that Ralph
by exclusive clubs. Many Americans over-the-glass-of-port parleys. Ath- Carson, '17, one of the Michigan
For this reason, English college men remark upon the absence of fraterni- letics play a relatively small part in Rhode's scholars, will be the next
do not show their enthusiasm by or- ties, and that they are not missed in student conversation. In the Ameri- president of the Oxford Union. He is
ganized cheering under a cheer-lead- the scheme of things. It is further can colleges and universities, table now, secretary, and the secretary
er, but inspire fight by a great shout stated that the English system of hay- talk at limes, consists principally of almost invariably becomes president
at the beginning of the race, or in ig men live within college walls has football, track, baseball, or basket- at the following election. Mr. Jeffer-
crucial moments of the battle when every advantage of the fraternity sys- ball, while bluebooks and dreaded final son knows Carson and says "he is
one may hear an occasional "Row! tem, with none of its disadvantages, examinations command a goodly share very highly esteemed" among his fel-
Row!" en run along the course sig- In reality, the English student is of the attention. The English stu- low students,
nalling to their respective teams how conservative rather than snobbish. In dent, on the contrary, has a tendency American university men are in-
close their nearest rivals are by fir- the words of one American student, to discuss problems of a less local dined to dodge the discussion of many
ing blank cartridges. After the re- "The undergraduate proved to be quite nature, such subjects as history, philosophy,
it, and motion pictures of the event approachable. It was perhaps exper- It is this conversation of the Oxford politics, economics, art, or education
are sometimes shown the same dayn imental, but nevertheless genuine students that impresses the American as too "high-brow" or "over their
a genialty. In looks he is about the as much as anything. Intellectuality heads," or as subject matter for pro-
At Oxford there is not evident the respectable average, despite careless, is the dominant note. The English fessors to handle. I have noticed here
athletic aristocrat who is so conspic- characterless dress, but there is usu- pay especial attention to debating. in table talk the men prefer to deal
uous in American institutions, for ally an air of distinction regardless This activity is as serious with them with athletics, small pleasures, and
athletics are not monopolized by a of appearances. His generous self- as are our athletics with us. This other minor 'matters. Mr. Jefferson
small number of men, trained by high- esteem (if he has it) is rarely aired. fact is most cogently shown in the and others of intimate Oxford associ-
salaried and specialized coaches, nor He is well-mannered at table, despite high position of the Oxford Union, pri- ation say that the English student does
do the men appear before such a large the table. He seldom effervesces." marily a debating organization, where not wait till he graduates before he
number of students. Athletic success Michigan has sometimes been refer- discussions of large public questions attempts to apply his knowledge.
does not determine a man's position red to as "the poor man's college," a take place. Such men as Lloyd George Large subjects of the day dominate
as much as here. place where the man of small means and Asquith frequently come to par- (Continued on Page 8)
In general, it may be said that the may work his way through and edu-
'athletics of Oxford are less organied cate himself at minimum expense. At
than those in this country. But the Michigan, too, there is the other ex-
average individual activity probably is treme in the economic-social scale,
greater in that English school. Each but at Oxford these contrasts are not
afternoon everyone does something in so evident. There 'is said to be a
the line of outdoor sports, which is greater chance for individual deveelop- - e
more than can be said for the typical ment, for self-cultivation of person-
American student. The English seem ality. "Be natural, or "Be your own
to have approached the ideal of just self.," seems to be the rule. I wish
enough work and just enough play. only to suggest in contrast the idea of
There is a happy medium, a moder- uniform quantity production of stf- have too ma n coldcreams to list
ation between study and athletics. dents which appears so characteristic Weh v o a y
Winning the game is not the para- of American universities.
mount idea, but rather playing a good At Michigan, in years gone by, "Joe's
game, and the Orient," were great social but you can expect to find all the
After the day on the field or on the stamping grounds. Bat now the at-
river course, comes Tea. With us the mosphere of Sahara rules. At Oxford
word "Tea" is closely associated with the men may'have their liquor in their good ones here.
the phrase "hen party." But in Eng- rooms, although there is practically
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XWe try to keep our stock of toilet arti-
1=C h eer pcles so complete that it will not be nec-
essary for you to look elsewhere for
Even if you have an exam. in Ec. I what you want.
the day of the Hop, still you have__
one thing to be thankful for.
Besimers' Grilled Steaks D rug Company
Every One is a Master in the Realm of Fine Cooing E. & S. UNIVERSITY AVES.
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