Interchange With Fellow Alum Regarding New UNC Female Chancellor

Virginia (UNC 1961) asks:

So, what do you think of the new chancellor coming in July 1?  A woman!  Seems long overdue in terms of gender, but maybe no one saw a qualified one before now — I’m not sure about that!

Allen (UNC 1962) responds:

God bless the new chancellor.

Our new state government shows signs of under-appreciating the value of this great university, which is practical analysis. Temporarily empowered anti-intellectual forces take the university to be a cultural enemy, while undervaluing the historic contribution UNC made and makes to North  Carolina’s reputation and success story.

How did the role of women in civilization come to be so rigidly defined? My guess is that for most of the past quarter of a million years, members of both genders did everything because communities were small and scarcity was common. Survival ruled. To suppress talent was an impractical option.

The division of labor associated with the rise of civilization probably fostered more rigid gender role restrictions. And the then ongoing epidemic of mother and infant birthing deaths, which ended recently, may have fixated emphasis on female reproductive responsibility.

The opportunity for women to be anybody is brand new. The emergence of self-definitive womanhood is one of the most critical new resources for civilized progress, far more important than oil and gas reserves or new technology. Self-definitive womanhood is going to play a leading role in “saving” civilization in the 21st Century.

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