Ben Oostdam's

page 39

1957 - 1960

This year, I took a 100 level course in "Economic History", presented by Dr. Cyril James. This was one of the best courses I ever enjoyed. As my termpaper topic I picked : "The Economic Impact on Western Europe of the Rise of Islam in the Seventh and Eight Centuries."
Of the 10 related reference books listed in the Redpath Library catalogue, one had been checked out, and six were unaccounted for ; the remaining three fortunately included two with opposite views: Pirenne and Patzelt.

Other termpapers I wrote this year were:
"The Bathurst Copper-Zinc District", for the course "Ore Deposits", and
"The Tyndall Limestone", for the course "Geology of North America".
This was a fine course, offered by Dr. Thomas Clark (who lived on to 100) and Dr. Stearn, which was based almost entirely on the Geosynclinal Hypothesis (James Hall, J.D. Dana, Marshall Kay) . Two years later this whole edifice was brought down by Seafloor Spreading (Dietz and Hess), leaving me much less confident...
I also greatly enjoyed Dr. Clark's course on Sedimentology, with as text Pettijohn's "Sedimentary Rocks" which I practically memorized.
I also applied to a dozen or more graduate schools, most of which accepted me thanks to Dr. Clark's fine letter of recommendation.
(I have to try and find the letters of acceptance so I can prove that I turned down Harvard's two fellowships...;o] )

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