Oct. 7, 1999
Vol. 19 No. 2

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    In the News

    Joseph Kirsner, the Louis Block Distinguished Service Professor in the Gastroenterology Section in Medicine, made the front page of the Chicago Tribune’s “MetroChicago” section Wednesday, Sept. 22, when the doctor of the University of Chicago Hospitals received the honor of having a portion of Maryland Avenue––58th Street to 59th Street––named Dr. Joseph B. Kirsner Drive. The street naming came as the gastroenterologist celebrated his 90th birthday. Kirsner, who has taught for 64 years, has trained more than 200 of the field’s leading specialists. Fourteen former students are department chairs at medical schools and another 41 are professors, the story reported.

    Sander Gilman, Professor and Chairman of Germanic Studies, the Henry R. Luce Professor of Liberal Arts in Human Biology and author of Creating Beauty to Cure the Soul and Making the Body Beautiful: A Cultural History of Aesthetic Surgery, was quoted in an article that appeared in the Sept. 19 issue of The New York Times. The story reported on the increase in elective, cosmetic surgeries and the fact that they have gone from private operations to public attractions now being viewed on Webcasts. “With so many people getting this surgery, soon you will have a community of people who define themselves by refusing to get it. The most powerful statement will be remaining unchanged.”

    Richard Epstein, the James Parker Hall Distinguished Service Professor in the Law School, wrote an op-ed about the federal government’s racketeering and fraud lawsuit against the tobacco industry that claims the industry concealed the health hazards of smoking and the addictive effects of nicotine. In the opinion piece, which appeared in the Friday, Sept. 24 issue of The New York Times, Epstein claimed that the government’s suit lacks what any successful civil fraud claim requires––differential knowledge. Epstein wrote, “No matter how it is sliced, litigation is not the way to deal with the regulation of tobacco.”

    Stories about the David and Alfred Smart Museum of Art’s recent $5 million bequest from Paul and Miriam Kirkley of Carol Stream, Ill., appeared in the Friday, Oct. 1 Chicago Sun-Times and the “Tempo” section of the Chicago Tribune. The gift puts the Smart Museum into the top 5 percent of American art museums in terms of acquisitions endowments.

    Mark Krupnik, Professor in the Divinity School, wrote an op-ed that appeared in the Saturday, Sept. 25 Chicago Sun-Times. Krupnik’s commentary dealt with the imbalance of our tax code and how the working poor and college students carry too much of the tax burden compared to those Americans in higher tax brackets.

    Dali Yang, Assistant Professor in Political Science, was quoted in The New York Times about China’s governmental and economic state as the People’s Republic of China celebrated its 50th anniversary on Friday, Oct. 1. Yang also was quoted in a story published in the Friday, Sept. 24 Chicago Tribune about a controversial parade held in Chicago’s Chinatown in celebration of Communist China’s 50th anniversary. The story, which reported that parade supporters were mainly older residents of Chinatown, also stated that many opponents of the parade compared it to the 1978 Nazi march in Skokie or to a hypothetical parade in Miami’s Cuban community for Fidel Castro’s regime. Yang said that comparison is too strong. “I don’t think you can compare them because a very substantial portion of the Cuban community is against Castro in Miami.” Yang also noted that China, unlike Cuba, does a lot of business with the United States.