Peter Pouncey

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Peter Pouncey

Peter Pouncey PhD '69 is a British classicist who served as the ninth Dean of Columbia College. Pouncey was born, a son of missionaries, in the British concession of the Chinese city of Tsingtao.

Pouncey, who might have been the most quotable Dean of Columbia ever, was quoted by the Spectator saying of the Deanship that "anyone who really wants the job is crazy and should therefore be disqualified."[1] Shortly thereafter, he was named Dean.

Pouncey went on to serve as president of Amherst College between 1984 and 1994 before returning to Columbia's faculty. He currently holds an adjunct position at the Heyman Center for the Humanities, and is a member of the Society of Senior Scholars.

In 2005, he published his first novel, Rules for Old Men Waiting, a very sad story about an old man waiting to die after his son and wife died.

It's often forgotten that Deans of Columbia College were and are also scholars, and Pouncey was no slouch, winning a Lionel Trilling Award for his study of Thucydides. He is known for his incredible hair, witty British quips, and half-serious grandiose plans to resurrect the British Empire.

Pouncey Report

In 1975, he issued a report recommending the merger of the College, General Studies, Barnard College, and the undergraduate division of SEAS into one dedicated undergraduate school for all students, downsizing GSAS enrollment, and forcing more GSAS faculty to dirty their hands by teaching undergraduates. [2] This went well beyond Carl Hovde's calls for merging SEAS and GS with the College in 1970. Later that semester he instigated a Columbia College Faculty vote on taking the College co-ed, much to chagrin of the central administration and Barnard.[3]

External links

Preceded by
Carl Hovde
Dean of Columbia College 
1972-1975
Succeeded by
Robert Belknap (acting)


References

  1. http://spectatorarchive.library.columbia.edu/cgi-bin/columbia?a=d&d=cs19720106-01.2.2
  2. http://spectatorarchive.library.columbia.edu/cgi-bin/columbia?a=d&d=cs19750909-01.2.3
  3. http://spectatorarchive.library.columbia.edu/cgi-bin/columbia?a=d&d=cs19751126-01.2.2
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