Ann Sussman '77
I wanted you and the department to know that I've just co-authored a book for the Academic market (Routledge is the publisher) and dedicated it to Prof Rhoda Rappaport at Vassar, my advisor in the department more than thirty years ago!
The book blurb recently went online here:
The Dedication reads:
To Rhoda Rappaport, professor emeritus of History at Vassar College (1961-2000). Professor Rappaport imbued her students
with a passion for the History of Science, challenging them to recognize the significance of unconventional thinking and how it leads to cultural transformation.
I was not a typical History major - if there is such a thing - and only switched into the department at the very last minute in senior year, as I recall.
It was Prof Rhoda Rappaport who made it all happen. I took her popular history of science class as a sophomore or junior (?), loved it...and it slowly dawned on me that the biology major I had declared did not quite fit. Her influence, at the end, was quite profound. She not only helped me figure out how to get a degree from the department within three semesters - she also let me know that there's a place for people who think 'outside the box'. Sometimes, they make history and sometimes they write it! I regret that I was never able to thank Rhoda for taking an interest in me- nor did I ever share how important and profound her influence would turn out to be. I quite doubt that this book could have happened without her.
"You can't connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards," Steve Jobs famously quipped; my story, I now realize, bears that out, too.
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