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Sep 5, 2004 3:52 pm

Just When You Thought ...

Just when you thought it was safe to dismiss the lady professor of medieval history at Cambridge as a quaint anachronism, along comes Gillian Evans. After twenty years as a lecturer in medieval history at the University and a half dozen visits to court, she finally won her battle and was made professor two years ago. Their grudging acknowledgment of her work will bring Cambridge administrators no peace. This week, Professor Evans published Inside the University of Cambridge in the Modern World, which"lays bare the anger and tensions seething within the ancient university."
It details the muddled financial controls - or lack of - that failed to keep track of a growing deficit that would have brought a less well endowed university to its knees. She paints an avowedly partisan picture of a myriad of overlapping committees and officials who are unclear about their responsibilities.

The book delves into the arcane world of Cambridge administration where there are even two" committees on committees" as well as a council, a senate and a"dons' parliament", Regent House.

It sounds delicious. Far from quaint or anachronistic, it sounds very familiar. It sounds not at all uniquely academic. Thanks to Sharon Howard at Early Modern Notes for the tip.

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