Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Stanley Hauerwas at Harvard

"... Stanley Hauerwas was at Harvard to deliver a lecture and, being there early and still need to do some preparations, set out to find the library. Not finding it he stopped a student and proceeded to ask him, “Excuse me, where’s the library at?”

The student, looking incredulously at him responded, “Sir, at Harvard we don’t end our sentences with a preposition.”

Stanley paused for a moment and then rephrased his question in a more grammatically appropriate manner: “Where’s the library at, asshole?”"

(H/T: Inhabitatio Dei)

Stanley Hauerwas has clarified:

"I have discovered that there exist stories about what I have said in this or that circumstance that is not true. It seems I was in Cambridge walking across the Yard at Harvard trying to find my way to the library. I am alleged to have stopped an undergraduate and asked, "Can you tell me where the library is at." The student responded, "We do not end sentences with prepositions at Harvard." To which I responded, "Can you tell me where the library is at, asshole." I realize this is the kind of story that seems so true it should be true, but in fact it did not happen. Of course "did not happen" may be an inadequate way to understand "true.""
(Stanley Hauerwas, The State of the University: Academic Knowledges and the Knowledge of God [UK: Blackwell, 2007), p.133, n.24.


Alex Tang said...

LOL. Is it true?

Sze Zeng said...

Hi Alex,

Not sure, but according to Halden, it seems like it's true.

Alex Tang said...

It sounds like something he will do too

Sze Zeng said...

No doubt on that. It certainly sounds like him.