SpecGram Vol CL, No 3 Contents Letters to the Editor

Ah, Summer!

A Letter from the Managing Editor

During the summer of 1929, before the bottom fell out of the U.S. stock market, a time when almost anything seemed possible, and all good things likely, a now nearly mythic ritual quietly took place
Franz Bopp and Alice Vanderbilt Morris pose stylishly and quite cozily at the 1929 Annual International Men of Philology/Women of Anthropology Multidisciplinary Mixer, held at a private beach resort in Galveston, Texas.
at a private beach resort in Galveston, Texas. The 1929 Annual International Men of Philology/Women of Anthropology Multidisciplinary Mixer, a fabulous blend of the literati and the glitterati, was in full swing.

While every age looks back in time through the rosiest of lenses, this seems, indeed, to have been a simpler time, a truer time. Philology was the pinnacle of academic achievement, Anthropology the noblest of academic pursuits. Brilliant minds from both disciplines gathered for a week-long celebration of Dionysian proportions: hedonistic displays of etymological prowess, orgies of conjugation, and endless literary debauchery.

In certain circles it is even rumored that the annual simple-minded celebrations of flesh and booze we know today as Spring Break are but a pale shadow of the revels that once took place when the Men of Philology and the Women of Anthropology came together.

These festivities, while scarcely secret, nonetheless took place under an implicit covenant of polite discretion. Few records remain, and none of the direct participants ever wrote of their experiences at the Multidisciplinary Mixers. Some have gone so far as to declare the entire thing apocryphal—the product of wishful thinking among lonely linguists.

Well, delusional and lonely linguists of the world may now rejoice. Using the latest multi-spectral infrared imaging technology—similar to that used recently by Oxford University scientists to decipher the Oxyrhynchus papyri—a pile of old and moldy photographs, stuck together in an inseparable heap for decades, has been re-imaged. The results are fantastic: a small but crucial photographic record of the 1929 Mixer.

These photographs, along with the text of the handwritten annotations found on the back of each, have been reproduced throughout this issue. We hope you will enjoy this truly historic glance back into true history.

Letters to the Editor
SpecGram Vol CL, No 3 Contents