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November 06, 1955 - Image 16

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Michigan Daily, 1955-11-06
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SS6 [ '0 jaQWaAON 'Aopi nS Sunday,; November 6,1-955



The Problem of Integration





MRICAS have long pictured
themselves as warm, friendly
people interested in strangers. Yet
in attempting to explain the lack
of acceptance of foreign students
on campus, one of them remarked,
"but the Americans are cold, is it

How can one explain the fact ed that they were eager to really
that the majority .of Michigan for- know the people of this country.
eign students do not have many, Is the disparity between the wish
if indeed any American friends-- and the fact the fault of the for-
and tend to mix socially only with eign students, the Americans or
their fellow foreigners. the institutions?
A large group recently encount- All three are to blame, but the
ered at International Center ad- last two bear more of the respon-
mitted to knowing few American sibility.
students but always earnestly add- International Center as an of-



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ficial organ responsible for the
well being of foreign students has
all the materials for doing a good
job but the coercive power of
bringing American students to
their premises to meet foreign
guests., It is an organization
which has achieved some results,
but cannot hope to solve the prob-
IF ONE prepared; an approximate
curve of the degree of integra-
tion of the foreign student, it
would probably show these ten-
dencies-the student who can real-
ly be considered as part of cam-
pus life with American friends is
the one whose English is most
faultless, appearance least outland-
ish and who lives with Americans.
At the bottom would be the stu-
dent with a decided accent, dark
complexion or native costume who
generally lives alone or with oth-
er foreign students.
Upon arrival on campus any
student's first problem is hous-
ing and here is where the foreign
student lays the foundation for
his integration or lack of it. The
students who lodge in the Law-
yers Club have little difficulty in
establishing contact with the oth-
er students, often they are room-
ing with Americans.
But to gain admittance to any
other official University housing
unit is difficult, usually impos-
sible. This could be a result of+
the general policy that there is
no room for graduate students in
the over-crowded residence halls.
Surely, however, exceptions could
be made when a student has made+
a great deal of effort in order to
attend the University.
WITH the residence halls barred1
to them the student is aided
in his housing problem by the In-
ternational Center, but even this
official body can do little to ob-
tain the colored foreign student
satisfactory housing. The Ann'
Arbor landlady is free to reject
whom she pleases and often does.
One might assume that the for-
eign student could meet Americans
in his daily, class contacts. His'
failure to do so is often ascribed
to the fact that as a rule gradu-
ate students do not mix much, or'
that the foreign student himself
is at fault.
One observes, however, a super-
ficial interest in the strangeness
of the foreigner, but the average'
student cannot be bothered to go'
beyond this outward strangeness
to discover a person.
Dating, normally about the best
way for a foreigner to get to know
the country he is visiting, brings;
up many difficulties because the
foreigner is often expected to have,
diffierent social customs and the+
American also does not wish to be
criticized by his own social group.
One of the attractions of at-
tending a large university is the
diverse character of the student
population. By expecting the for-
eign student to blend with his
surroundings in order to integrate
are we not sacrificing this attrac-

ARRIVING in Ann Arbor for the
first time, a foreign student
finds the International Center a
nucleus around which he can build
his relationship to campus life.
In addition to offering counsel-
ing services, the Center staff will
aid him in finding housing, friends,
and a loan from their emergency
fund if an expected check is late
in coming.
A student must contact the Cen-
ter as soon as he reaches Ann Ar-
bor to arrange matters of immi-
gration. Often unfamiliarity with
the campus delays this procedure.
The staff has develped a second
sight for discovering newcomers
who have not yet found the Cen-
ter or its facilities.
Wandering on State Street dur-
ing his first day here, an Ethopian
student was stopped by Dr. James
Davis, Director of the Internation-
al Center, who asked intuitively if
he were a new foreign student.
Within 30 minutes the Ethopian
was seated in an easy chair in Dr.
Davis' office, with his rooming ar-
rangements already made and
many of his anxieties quelled.
THE center, occupying a ground
floor wing of the Union has
achieved within its walls the inte-
gration it hiopes to promote on a
campus level. It has won the
loyalty of many visiting students
who realize the necessity of the
function it performs.
A'feeling of friendship and tol-
erance exists between European,
Asian and South American which
often transcends the political hos-
tilities of their homelands. It can
be explained by the international
student's willingness to become
part of the campus activity.
Unfortunately, in many cases
this desire for integration is
thwarted before it grows to a
circle of American friends.
A RELATIVELY simple scheme
serves to introduce ISA mem-
bers to each other, and to tackle
committee work. All project com-
mittees, of which there are hun-
dreds throughout the year, must
contain someone from every con-
tinent of the world.
Thursday afternoon teas, which
have become a ritual to many cen-
ter members, testifies to this suc-
cess of the system. Starting with
students sitting with others from
their own country, talking in a
native tongue, they evolve shortly
into mixed groups, speaking in a
common language, English.
The International Students' As-
sociation, working with the Inter-
national Center and the Student
Government Council, handles all
center student activities. ISA
works closely with the 13 national
clubs, each made up of students
from a single country or continent.
The clubs provide a means for
students from the same country to
get to know each other, and strive
to keep a segment of a culture
alive, although it may be thou-
sands of miles from the place of
its practice.

ONE night when Sumalini Rajam
was a small child put to bed
in her parents' great home in
India, she heard the sound of bells
and music rising from a party in!
the huge family living room.
She climbed down the stairs
and for a moment stood awed at
the sight of a dancer swirling to
the intricate rhythms and subtle
psychological movements of na-
tive Indian dance.
Then she ran shouting into the
room: "I must dance, I must
Her parents promptly sent
Sumalini Rajam back to bed, but
they never stopped her from danc-
T ODAY, a dignified lady with an
alive face, slightly greying hair
and expressive dark eyes that light
up when she speaks of her craft,
Madam Rajam is internationally
known as one of India's foremost
"I was born to dance," she says.
'To me the dance is everything.
Whenever I have lost something
or someone, I have found it in

... world-famous artist.
dancing. It is something spiritual
-it is my whole life."
Madam Rajam's life has in-
cluded much more than dancing.
She has been a stage star, motion
picture actress, short story writer,

teacher; singer-but she attributes
all of these accomplishments to
her childhood environment, the
halls of one of India's greatest
"What I have done is nothing
compared to what others in my
-family have accomplished," she
says. It was a family that in-
cluded a mathematician father
who spoke 27 languages and chil-
dren who grew up to become some
of India's foremost poets, scien-
tists, philosophers, musicians, ac-
tors and leaders.
"It was that wonderful family,
where education was something
that went on all the time, that
gave me everything. Without
them I would never have been able
to do anything."
MADAM Rajam is living in Ann
Arbor to be near her son,
Prahlad Rajam, instructor in bac-
She teaches a few dance stu-
dents here and gives lectures all
over the state. But, by the speci-
fications of her visa, her profes-
sional activities are limited.
"Wherever I go I follow the
laws of the country, no matter how
hard they are," Madam Rajam
said, sitting in the lounge of Mad-
elon Pound House and awaiting
the arrival of a pupil. "Regard-
less of the difficulty, I have to be
What India owes most to Mad-
am Rajam is her pioneer work in
films and stage and her revival
of almost extinct dance tech-
She-studied all forms of danc-
ing, including western dances. But
See DEVOTION, Page 15


Interna tional Artist Teaches Classic Art

by Radha. (William Himelhoch) wi
example of Northern Indian classica


Three versions of

the nightshirt

slumber story, borrowed

from great-great


grandfather. Snug and

warm as ever

flannelette tailored
short, medium or

long . . . with button-
down collars . . . in
feminine pastels of
blue, pink, and lavender.
A. Traditional nightshirt,
S-M-L, 3.95
B: Bloomer style, 32 to

RIVER STANCE--William Him-
elhoch portrays the sacred
Ganges flowing from the matted
locks of the God Shiva in the
'Hathaki' technique.

Wester portrays a typical pose
from the Manipuri dance, per-
formed by the followers of Sri

36, 3.95

uisa pagno
t f '''l
The /'iA LYN Sho
r !_ ,;high _Theatr* Bldg.

C. The pajama story,
32 to 36, 4.95


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We are going to have some
fabulous toys for your Christmas
ideas. Why not come in now
and become acquainted with our
shop. We are sure you'll
like what you see.

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537 East Liberty

0 NO 8-6779

PRAYER-The God Shiva (Lou Mekush) stands in meditation.
Mekush, local professional dancer who has been studying with
Madam Rajam, last season appeared in recital at the Dramatic
Arts Centre dance show.

. _. . i

W .111, .........
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