In her article on a rural retreat for intellectual luminaries of the 1930s, Kate Hollander ’02 notes that German tourists now wonder why Bertolt Brecht, “that sly and worldly poet of the cities, would spend six years in this former farmhouse on a Danish island.” Rural retreats are something Marlboro College students understand very well, and indeed many have had their own intellectual fires set ablaze on this rural, unpretentious campus. Few examples are as arresting as the case of Robert MacArthur ’51, whose meteoric rise, from skinning mammals in a former farmhouse called Mather House to pioneering new mathematical approaches to ecology, is charted in an article by Dan Toomey ’79 in the following pages.
This issue of Potash Hill brings you from the aftermath of conflict and violence in Guatemala, as reported by Chrissy Raudonis ’11, to the quiet, poignant poetry of Kimberly Cloutier Green ’78. We hear from math professor Matt Ollis about measuring campus sustainability, and from freshman Christian Lampart about theater professor Paul Nelsen’s big shoes to fill. As every summer, we celebrate the graduating students and their far-reaching and innovative Plans of Concentration.
If you have some reflection on your own humble roots at Marlboro, I encourage you to share them with us. You can read responses to the last issue of Potash Hill on the Letters page.
—Philip Johansson, editor
Front cover: “Diurne #9,” by Lila Kole-Berlingieri ’13, from her senior exhibit in the Drury Gallery this spring. Lila’s Plan of Concentration in literature and visual arts investigated the role of art and narrative, especially the works of Marcel Proust and Virginia Woolf, in realizing selfhood. Photo by Dianna Noyes