Open Forum

Bates Magazine welcomes letters of 300 words or fewer. Letters may be edited for style, grammar, length, clarity, and relevance to College issues and issues discussed in Bates Magazine. Mail or e-mail letters to Editor, Bates Magazine, Office of Communications and Media Relations, 141 Nichols St., Lewiston ME 04240.

Minute Made
Just a note of appreciation and gratitude for your article on Bates people at 9:47 a.m. on Nov. 3, 2005 (“Just a Minute,” Winter 2006). It was wonderful to see/read about the great diversity amongst Bates grads. 

Ruth Hirsch ’76
Jerusalem, Israel

A slide show featuring all participants in the 9:47 project is online at — Editor

Residual Effects
I enjoyed the article “Uncovering Berlin,” (Spring 2005) particularly the students’ reports on their experiences there. 

In their comments, professors Hochstadt and Tobin refer to “a residue of buildings, monuments, and architectural styles…on the streets of Berlin.” This choice of the word “residue” — “a small amount that remains after most of something is gone,” is, I believe, to be a poor choice, not because I disagree with the visual effect they were responding to and trying to characterize, but because it implies that the city is more or less dead and gone, and no longer developing new styles, new monuments, and new buildings. This couldn’t be further from the truth.

We live, for example, in a 100-yaar-old wool yarn factory just behind Karl-Marx-Allee, where Melissa Simones ’06 lived. The building was completely renovated and modernized. A unique rooftop story was added, resulting in something entirely new and attractive. This area of Friedrichshain is full of these old factory buildings (workers’ apartment house on the street and factory building behind). They were all built 100 years ago and used primarily for woodworking (piano factories, etc.). Today they are being turned into offices, apartments, and studios. Architecture — building, rebuilding, renovation — in Berlin is quite alive. This results less in residue, I hope, and more in a vibrant, ever-changing, evolving city. 

Kevin Pfeiffer