“I remember how the students rebelled against [compulsory Christianity]. For example, when you had to go to Vespers: students would wear t-shirts and shorts, and administration would say, “Well, you’ve got to wear a tie,” so students would tie a tie around their t-shirts. Or they would hold up a newspaper and read it. I mean, there were just these little ways of rebelling against this enforced Christian conformity.
Frank Goldsmith is originally from Marion, North Carolina, and following his graduation from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Law School, he practiced civil rights law in Buncombe County. He graduated from Davidson in 1967 with a degree in French and studied for a year at the Université de Montpellier, where he joined l’Union des Juifs de Montpellier. He is an army veteran and an active member of Carolina Jews for Justice (CJJ).
Summary: Frank Goldsmith ’67 reflects on his student years at Davidson, a period of time that preceded his eventual conversion to Judaism. Goldsmith speaks to how conservative Davidson felt in the mid-60s, the elimination of mandatory Vesper services, and the way the Religion department fostered critical inquiry with faith. A central figure in student activism at Davidson, Goldsmith also describes organizing with SSOC, his outrage with the Linden Affair as a young alumnus, and his later involvement with CJJ.