By Shirley Marchalonis
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Additional info for College Girls: A Century in Fiction
212). The seniors who know the way the college operates and have long since decided they will stay and get their degrees, whatever it costs them, share an enormous cynicism. And the younger students learn, painfully. When first-year Hilda, totally and naively honest, forces a classmate to Page 132 report herself for cheating because the handbook tells her that is the right thing to do, she finds that no one wants to know. The student government representative shrugs it off, and the violator of the honor code has no idea what cheating is.
Montgomery's Anne Shirley leaves Green Gables for college in Anne of the Island. 24 Redmond is a good, small liberal arts college where everyone can know everyone else; there are no sororities, and learning, at least for Anne and her friends, is respected. The small-town formality of the time separates men and Page 126 women students in their living arrangements, but otherwise they interact in the same friendly manner. There are college activities and loyalties, but for students like Anne and the friends she has chosen, these are simply pleasant adjuncts to the purpose of learning.
Now the physical campus seems remote from the enclosed space that had once nurtured eager young women. Rebecca's college career and her attempts to learn, think, and question produce a series of confrontations, for as a perceptive and intelligent young woman she is in constant opposition to the image-driven administration. Within months the place has become hateful: "The deadly monotony of classes and study-study and classes-chapel, classes and study.... And Rebecca studied all night long. Night after night-night after night-and wondered how many ages she could stand it.
College Girls: A Century in Fiction by Shirley Marchalonis