IMAGE:  April 2004
LINK:  Research
Research at Chicago  
LINK:  Features
Father of the Grid  
Where the action was  
Picture perfect  
Rock-solid mission  

LINK:  Class Notes
Alumni News  
Alumni Works  

LINK:  Campus News
Chicago Journal  
University News e-bulletin  

LINK:  Also in every issue
Editor's Notes  
From the President  
GRAPHIC:  University of Chicago Magazine

GRAPHIC:  ResearchCitations

A different classical tradition
Ancient Athens, often considered Western civilization’s ideal, had an ugly side: repressing women. But James Redfield, AB’54, PhD’61, the Edward Olson distinguished service professor in Classical Languages & Literature, notes that not all ancient Greeks shared this Athenian practice. In his new book, The Locrian Maidens: Love and Death in Greek Italy (Princeton University Press), Redfield points out that the Locrians, inhabitants of a Greek colony in Italy, gave women special religious rights that men could gain only through marriage.

IMAGE:  The box shows where a star cluster is formed.
Courtesy Richard Powell
and Richard Rees
The box shows where a star cluster is formed.

A star cluster is born
Astronomy & astrophysics professor Kyle Cudworth and his former student, Richard Rees, SM’88, PhD’95, now at Westfield State College, have provided the first observational evidence that globular clusters—groups of stars—can propagate. Cudworth and Rees, who presented their findings at a January 5 American Astronomical Society meeting, analyzed more than a century’s worth of astronomical data to show that an older cluster, NGC 6397, passed through the Milky Way 5 million years ago, leaving a new one, NGC 6231, in its wake.

Bacteria be gone
Keeping harmful bacteria at bay remains critical to preventing postoperative infection. Chicago researchers, led by associate professor of surgery John Alverdy, report in the February Gastroenterology that pacifying bacteria, rather than relying on antibiotics to kill them, safeguarded mice against lethal germs. After surgery the mice were exposed to Pseudomonas aeruginosa, an opportunistic pathogen; only mice who also received a high molecular weight polymer, which acts as a protective coating, survived. The coating prevents stress signals from reaching Pseudomonas and prompting it to attack.

Egalitarian bliss
Marriage works best when couples avoid traditional gender roles and fully share property, maintain Law School assistant professor Carolyn Frantz and a Tel Aviv University colleague in “Properties of Marriage,” a January Columbia Law Review article. The ideal marriage, they argue, is an “egalitarian liberal community” with total autonomy for both partners, including freedom to exit the relationship. Frantz also emphasizes the ongoing connection between law and marriage, noting that people want their “government’s legal stamp.”

The evolution of SARS
Scientists in China and at Chicago have traced Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome’s (SARS) evolution from its origins as an animal virus to its current form in human hosts, reporting their findings in Science Express, the online edition of Science. Study coauthor Chung-I Wu, professor and chair of Ecology & Evolution, analyzed genetic changes in SARS that let the illness spread from person to person, increasing infection rates. Last year SARS killed 774 people.

IQ isn’t everything
Persistence, dependability, and other noncognitive skills likely have as large a stake in work and school achievement as do more easily measured cognitive abilities. That’s according to James Heckman, the Henry Schultz distinguished service professor in Economics. In his forthcoming book with Alan Kruger, Inequality in America: What Role for Human Capital Policies? (MIT Press), Heckman argues that high IQs don’t always predict socioeconomic success. Employers and teachers, he found, most value dependability and consistency in staff or students.—P.M.




2007 The University of Chicago® Magazine | 401 North Michigan Ave. Suite 1000, Chicago, IL 60611
phone: 773/702-2163 | fax: 773/702-8836 |