Board index » delphi » Greeks clubs in American Universities

Greeks clubs in American Universities

While all the discussion about the Greeks and Delphi was
going on in another thread, I was reminded of "Greek" clubs
at American universities. (I think they are called a "Fraternity"
or something like that, but I am not sure).

What is all that about then? What are their purpose? Is it
all hush hush? I heard there were "lady" equivalents... is
this so? Are they the same as the guys ones?

Just curious,
Kevin.

--
To reply to me directly, remove "Iam."
and just use "KevGow" at "GMX.net".
--

 

Re:Greeks clubs in American Universities


Quote
Kevin wrote...
>What is all that about then? What are their purpose? Is it
>all hush hush? I heard there were "lady" equivalents... is
>this so? Are they the same as the guys ones?

Are you familiar with the term "Burschenschaft"? A fraternity is similar,
although not exactly the same, AFAIK.
--
Rudy Velthuis

Re:Greeks clubs in American Universities


Quote
Rudy Velthuis wrote:
> Are you familiar with the term "Burschenschaft"? A fraternity is similar,
> although not exactly the same, AFAIK.

Nope, my German doesn't stretch that far yet. I'm
just a poor South African stranded in Mnchen.

Isn't "Bursche" slang for boy? My dictionary is at home...

--
To reply to me directly, remove "Iam."
and just use "KevGow" at "GMX.net".
--

Re:Greeks clubs in American Universities


Quote
> On Wed, 26 Apr 2000 17:41:22 +0200, Kevin <Iam.Kev...@gmx.net> wrote:
> While all the discussion about the Greeks and Delphi was
> going on in another thread, I was reminded of "Greek" clubs
> at American universities. (I think they are called a "Fraternity"
> or something like that, but I am not sure).

> What is all that about then? What are their purpose? Is it
> all hush hush? I heard there were "lady" equivalents... is
> this so? Are they the same as the guys ones?

You mean fraternities & sororities.  I guess they could be called 'clubs'.  
Purposes vary.  Some are academic, some are social, some are otherwise
constructed.

For a fun overview, go rent the film "Animal House"  :>)

Hmmm...  Aren't "Frater" and "Soror" Latin?  What's up with that?

--
Daniel J. Wojcik

http://www.genjerdan.com/

What's the difference between a woman and a computer?
A computer will accept a 3 1/2 inch floppy.

Re:Greeks clubs in American Universities


Quote
GenJerDan wrote...

"National Lampoon's Animal House", AFAIK.

Quote
>Hmmm...  Aren't "Frater" and "Soror" Latin?  What's up with that?

Hehe, I have always wondered why fraterneties in the US always used Greek
letters. Here in Germany, or also in the Netherlands, they don't (I have
never been a member though, but a large percentage of the guys studying
dentistry or law was a member of "Carolus Magnus". Here, fraterneties are
most of the time a bit too elitarian for my taste).
--
Rudy Velthuis

Re:Greeks clubs in American Universities


Quote
> On Wed, 26 Apr 2000 19:04:33 +0200, Rudy Velthuis <rvelth...@gmx.de> wrote:
> GenJerDan wrote...

> "National Lampoon's Animal House", AFAIK.

True, but most rentals places will put it under "A", unless they are very
anal.

Quote
> Hehe, I have always wondered why fraterneties in the US always used Greek
> letters. Here in Germany, or also in the Netherlands, they don't (I have
> never been a member though, but a large percentage of the guys studying
> dentistry or law was a member of "Carolus Magnus". Here, fraterneties are
> most of the time a bit too elitarian for my taste).

I much preferred my co-ed dorm.  That was where I learned to appreciate
baby-doll nighties.

No, wise guy.  Not -me- wearing them.  Sheesh.  

--
Daniel J. Wojcik
No man is an island...
...he's a peninsula.
--

Re:Greeks clubs in American Universities


When I entered the Computer Science & Engineering MSc program at USF in
1983, I was surprised of how many "Greeks" were in the campus!! The student
newspaper (the "Oracle" I think) was writing about all the "Greek"
happenings (parties, meetings, soprts etc).  Very soon, I found out that all
this had nothing to do with my nationality.
They were student organizations, and each fraternity (brotherhood so to
speak) with its sister sorority, was related with a group of people with
special interests or culture. They used to throw big parties with a lot of
beer. New students at the University were joining such a group in order to
meet people and participate in campus life. I remember that they were
organizing "Olympic games" with funny competitions (egg throwing, beer
drinking etc). They had their own dormitories where new members were living.
Even student politics had a lot to do with those organizations. I think that
fraternities and sororities are part of the American culture, especially of
the southern states.

Dimitris

Quote
"Kevin" <Iam.Kev...@gmx.net> wrote in message

news:39070E22.FE35FA26@gmx.net...
Quote
> While all the discussion about the Greeks and Delphi was
> going on in another thread, I was reminded of "Greek" clubs
> at American universities. (I think they are called a "Fraternity"
> or something like that, but I am not sure).

> What is all that about then? What are their purpose? Is it
> all hush hush? I heard there were "lady" equivalents... is
> this so? Are they the same as the guys ones?

> Just curious,
> Kevin.

> --
> To reply to me directly, remove "Iam."
> and just use "KevGow" at "GMX.net".
> --

Re:Greeks clubs in American Universities


OK, potential frat members participating in this group are invited to
flame... I attended Univ. of Michigan, Ann Arbor 1989-91. In my perception
there were 2 main types of "greek" societies:

(1) Academic ones, which are basically open to all students of a certain
academic discipline (oftentimes grade averages apply to select a top few
percent of the student body so as to achieve a certain elite status). Apart
from such relatively objective selection criteria, these clubs are rather
harmless and do not indulge in wild beastly stuff like in the movie
mentioned
elsewhere in this thread. They are another form of "academic society". I
myself was (am, but hardly care anymore) a member of Tau Beta Pi which is an
engineering club basically spanning all US universities, with literally
100,000's of members.

(2) "Social" ones; these are the REAL REAL "frats" (short for "fraternity").
These frats are basically an organised way to maintain class segregation by
making sure that upperclass students will never accidentally have to mingle
with lowerclass colleagues. The most "elite" fraternities hand-pick their
new members and often this selection is made months before students actually
arrive on campus for the first time. Not officially, but as a matter of
practicality. These deals not seldom go through rich and influential
parents' circles. Members of elite frats help each other "upwards" not only
in the college community but also in real world after graduation, wearing
secretive rings, socks, ties and other stupid stuff to remind them that they
are "special". One of the worst (and, to the outside world, most visible and
disgusting) things about these clubs are the entrance rites, socalled
"hazing" of freshmen, which involves all sort of humiliating nonsense like
making the newbies eat excrements, sit in dark cellars for days without food
or water, crawl {*word*192} on a leash like dogs across campus, and other glorious
actions which emphasize the level of class maintained within these clubs.

Sorry this is perhaps off-topic (except the Delphi / greek connection) but
don't get me started about fraternities.

Kristofer

Quote
Kevin <Iam.Kev...@gmx.net> wrote in message

news:39070E22.FE35FA26@gmx.net...
Quote
> While all the discussion about the Greeks and Delphi was
> going on in another thread, I was reminded of "Greek" clubs
> at American universities. (I think they are called a "Fraternity"
> or something like that, but I am not sure).

> What is all that about then? What are their purpose? Is it
> all hush hush? I heard there were "lady" equivalents... is
> this so? Are they the same as the guys ones?

> Just curious,
> Kevin.

> --
> To reply to me directly, remove "Iam."
> and just use "KevGow" at "GMX.net".
> --

Re:Greeks clubs in American Universities


On 26 Apr 2000 09:39:26 -0800, GenJerDan wrote:

Quote
>For a fun overview, go rent the film "Animal House"  :>)

I thought that was a documentary...
--
Ray Lischner, author of Delphi in a Nutshell
http://www.tempest-sw.com/nutshell

Re:Greeks clubs in American Universities


Quote
Kristofer Skaug wrote in message

<956774169.25500.0.pluto.c3ade...@news.demon.nl>...

Quote

>OK, potential frat members participating in this group are invited to
>flame... I attended Univ. of Michigan, Ann Arbor 1989-91. In my perception
>there were 2 main types of "greek" societies:

First of all, its a "fraternity" and not a "frat" because you don't call
your "country" a "****" <--- you should be able to fill in the blank if you
sound it out.

Quote

>(2) "Social" ones; these are the REAL REAL "frats" (short for
"fraternity").
>These frats are basically an organised way to maintain class segregation by
>making sure that upperclass students will never accidentally have to mingle
>with lowerclass colleagues. The most "elite" fraternities hand-pick their
>new members and often this selection is made months before students
actually
>arrive on campus for the first time. Not officially, but as a matter of
>practicality. These deals not seldom go through rich and influential
>parents' circles. Members of elite frats help each other "upwards" not only
>in the college community but also in real world after graduation, wearing
>secretive rings, socks, ties and other stupid stuff to remind them that
they
>are "special". One of the worst (and, to the outside world, most visible
and
>disgusting) things about these clubs are the entrance rites, socalled
>"hazing" of freshmen, which involves all sort of humiliating nonsense like
>making the newbies eat excrements, sit in dark cellars for days without
food
>or water, crawl {*word*192} on a leash like dogs across campus, and other
glorious
>actions which emphasize the level of class maintained within these clubs.

I believe the fraternity experience various both by the specific
organization that you join, but the experience also various depending upon
the specific university that you are attending.  I will not deny that "some"
of what you have mentioned does go on, but I seriously doubt that eating
excrement is typical.  Furthermore, based upon my experiences, hand-picking
new members months ahead of time did not happen.  We held several events
during a week long "rush period" at the beginning of each academic term to
recruit new members.  Anyone and everyone was allowed to attend.  Also,
deals never went "through rich and influential parents' circles."  But I
went to different university and am a member of a different fraternity, so
that in itself could explain the dichotomy.

Yes, even after the college years, fraternity members will help other
fraternity members.  This practice dates back to the original reason why
fraternities were established:  people wanted to befriend/establish life
long friendships with other like people that shared common goals and
interests, and they wanted to work together to accomplish those goals.
Meeting someone in the "real world" from your own fraternity is not so
foreign.  The fact that they belong to the same fraternity implies that they
share certain humanly virtues with yourself.

Alvin

Re:Greeks clubs in American Universities


Quote
Alvin Lee <alvin...@home.com> wrote in message

news:StMN4.35567$k5.993589@news1.frmt1.sfba.home.com...

Quote

> Yes, even after the college years, fraternity members will help other
> fraternity members.  This practice dates back to the original reason why
> fraternities were established:  people wanted to befriend/establish life
> long friendships with other like people that shared common goals and
> interests, and they wanted to work together to accomplish those goals.
> Meeting someone in the "real world" from your own fraternity is not so
> foreign.  The fact that they belong to the same fraternity implies that
they
> share certain humanly virtues with yourself.

This is exactly the point - fraternity people often seem to be so convinced
of their own right and in my experience often have extremely intolerant
attitudes towards people who don't belong to the "clique". In many ways it's
organised homophobia for people who don't like to have to deal with
differing ideas, values, lifestyles. Even outside of fraternities it is
normal that people have an affinity towards fellow humans with similar
values and ideas; this is an instinct, a social "law of nature". But the
fraternity institutions make this so blatantly and unashamedly visible and
promote segregation and "exclusiveness", as if no one had ever heard of the
ideal "all men are born equal". That's in the end my deepest problem with
fraternitites, I think they're a shame to humankind.

Kristofer

Re:Greeks clubs in American Universities


Quote

>This is exactly the point - fraternity people often seem to be so convinced
>of their own right and in my experience often have extremely intolerant
>attitudes towards people who don't belong to the "clique". In many ways
it's
>organised homophobia for people who don't like to have to deal with
>differing ideas, values, lifestyles. Even outside of fraternities it is
>normal that people have an affinity towards fellow humans with similar
>values and ideas; this is an instinct, a social "law of nature". But the
>fraternity institutions make this so blatantly and unashamedly visible and
>promote segregation and "exclusiveness", as if no one had ever heard of the
>ideal "all men are born equal". That's in the end my deepest problem with
>fraternitites, I think they're a shame to humankind.

>Kristofer

There is a clear demarcation between a group of individuals that work
together to achieve common goals and a group of elitist individuals focused
on preaching their intolerant doctrines to the world.
Sure "all men are born equal", but to follow this to the letter is rather
naive.  Also, you are also missing the influential powers of environment.
It is not so hard to believe that we are all more equal when we are just
from the womb, then we are 40 years down the road.  During this time we are
developing skills, ideals, values, etc... In order to be most successful,
individuals cooperate to achieve commonly held interests.  I think you are
forgetting that fraternities and sororities alike actually do a whole lot of
philanthropic work.  Furthermore, one can also make the comparison between
being a member of a fraternity and being a citizen of a given country.  Are
you also saying that claiming that citizenship to a particular country is
being to "exclusive?"  Are countries a "shame to humankind," as well?

Alvin

Re:Greeks clubs in American Universities


Quote
Alvin Lee <alvin...@home.com> wrote in message

news:KG8O4.36495$k5.1022213@news1.frmt1.sfba.home.com...

Quote

> There is a clear demarcation between a group of individuals that work
> together to achieve common goals and a group of elitist individuals
focused
> on preaching their intolerant doctrines to the world.

Didn't say they were preaching, necessarily; they're just excluding everyone
else who they feel "don't belong"... and make no secret of the fact that
they think themselves to be "pretty good guys".

Quote
> Sure "all men are born equal", but to follow this to the letter is rather
> naive.  Also, you are also missing the influential powers of environment.

Oops but this environment is being cherished most by those who maintain it
and profit from it - namely elitist groups. If it weren't for such groups
the environment would - at least in principle - be less discriminating.

Quote
> I think you are forgetting that fraternities and sororities alike actually
do
> a whole lot of philanthropic work.

I know that, they do fundraisers for the homeless etc. But I think this is
primarily a measure to soothe their own social conscience (what's left of
it), rather than a real social mindset.

Quote
> Furthermore, one can also make the comparison between
> being a member of a fraternity and being a citizen of a given country.
Are
> you also saying that claiming that citizenship to a particular country is
> being to "exclusive?"  Are countries a "shame to humankind," as well?

Well, for some reason all Earthlings are born with one citizenship or
another but I for my part never made any effort to "claim" any particular
citizenship. But you're right, countries and nationalism are instantiations
of the same principle on a global scale.  And I am not holy in this respect,
I do the same as most others (cheer for my country at sports events, etc).
But I'm not particularly proud of it.

Kristofer

Other Threads