|Cover of the Fall 1954 Coraddi|
After the resolution was presented, a vote was taken. The resolution passed by a vote of 21 to 17 (with one abstention). But, after the vote was taken, Dr. William Mueller, faculty advisor to the student legislature and professor of English, spoke to the group. He states that "one's sense of taste is closely related to his sense of morals ... One purpose of education is to enable a person to acquire the kind of taste and judgment which allow him to distinguish between a work of art and something that is cheap and tawdry ... It is my conviction that the contents of Coraddi is art; it is my opinion that it is good art. When we judge a picture, we must also take into consideration whether our final judgment is more a reflection of the picture or ourselves." Following Mueller's speech, the group decided to hold a second vote.. By a vote of 18 to 21, the student legislature chose not to pass the resolution and not to reprimand the staff of the Coraddi for their publication.
|Chancellor Edward Kidder Graham|
In his censure to the Coraddi staff, Graham stated that "it is my considered judgment that, even under the most liberal interpretation, the issue of Coraddi in question clearly exceeds the limits of good taste." He continued, "freedom of the press is inevitably hedged about by the relationship and the responsibility of the press to the social and academic groups in which it exists. The strongest protection for a free press is the judgment and the responsibility of those privileged with freedom, and the present censure is directed first of all toward an apparent confusion in the minds of the Coraddi staff with respect to the all-important difference between freedom and license." Graham concluded by noting that "a wide range of opportunity for the self-expression of the artist is not only recognized but insisted upon by the Woman's College. Nevertheless, art galleries, exhibitions to which people may go on this campus, booklets designed for people who are (or should be) interested in art, and comparable places are the right setting for uninhibited realism. Such opportunities exist on this campus in abundant measure without involving an undergraduate publication for general distribution."
|Coraddi editor Debbie Marcus|
In the aftermath of the censure and resignations, the Coraddi was unable to publish a Winter issue during the 1954-1955 academic year. But Graham's decision was upheld by the UNC Board of Trustees (the group now known as the Board of Governors). And he wrote privately the following month that disagreement with his decision was limited to "excitable aesthetes and a few other disciples of freedom."
Also of note is the career of Lee Hall, the artist who drew the controversial piece. Hall graduated from Woman's College on schedule in 1956. She later went on to serve as dean of Visual Arts at the State University of New York-Purchase before being appointed president of the Rhode Island School of Design in 1975. She held that position until 1983.