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The More Things Change. . . .

What was life like at Bob Jones College, Cleveland, Tennessee? Here’s a glimpse from then-faculty member, Dorothy Rivers Seay. She wrote under the pseudonym “Anonymous” to H. L. Mencken’s magazine The American Mercury in 1940.

The highlight of the essay is a never-memorialized “Dr. Bob” saying: “Any boy good enough to come to ____ College is good enough to have a date with any girl in the college.”

Read it. It could have been written yesterday.

24 thoughts on “The More Things Change. . . .

  1. The boundary-lessness of the young women being unable to refuse a date is appalling. It says so much about how women were/are viewed that I’m reeling. It is disgusting; the personal power being taken is disgusting.

  2. Just awful. I wonder when they stopped opening student’s mail, or did they? Isn’t that a federal offense?

  3. Did it become known that she was the author of the piece while she still worked at the school? What happened after this was published? I’d be most interested in “the rest of the story.”

  4. How do they decide whose mail to open? If they don’t like what the student wrote, they won’t mail it? If they decide to mail it, how do they make the mail look not tampered with? I imagine regular mail might be reduced now with all the e-mail and everything. Can they read students’ e-mails and phone texts, too? I just don’t understand how parents of students would let BJU get away with this.

  5. Wow. Just wow. The more things change…no kidding! When I was a student we weren’t allowed to talk to the opposite sex unless we were walking in the same direction for a reason, such as dinner or classes.

    Isn’t this the same Mrs. Seay who is a Jones cousin? There were three Seay sisters when I was in school.

  6. This article is spot on. When sin is the focus instead of God’s grace, we lose the true purpose of Christianity…. and get legalism.

  7. It’s curious that you would bring up Dorothy Seay. I’ve never been able to figure out either what she hoped to accomplish by writing that article or why she did not simiply leave if she was so unhappy.

      1. That’s strange. I’ve read a lot of your blog, but must have missed the references to Seay.

        It does seem that it would have been better if she had been honest and left on her own since she knew early on that she had basic disagreements.

  8. Wow!! It sounds the same! And the girls couldn’t refuse the boys for dates??? What were the girls? Chattel to be passed around and divided up among the boys?? and yet they limited the amount of time for dates!!

  9. Unbelievable! And I thought ‘catholics’ were the ‘sin-conscious ones!’ I see something eerily sinister in what’s going on in the sick minds of the rules-makers of this gulag! And it’s ‘this’: subtly devaluing women as ‘objects’ to be ‘dated’ for men’s pleasure! Would not ‘mysogeny’ be an easy next step in this kind of sick thinking? Not allowed to say ‘no’ to a date? Where was ‘he’ or ‘his mindless-brainless muscle-men’, when God was handing out the brains? The writer of the article has a really sharp mind. And she sees through all the phoniness, hypocracy, and religious nonsense,with a fine tooth comb of analysis. She is brilliant. Something that the gulag monsters are afraid of! Bishop Desmond Tutu was right! Women ‘should’ take over the world! And the sooner the better!

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