The Quest | The Free Press of Reed College

Thesis Christ! Sammi Massey

Religion major Sharon (aka Sammi) Massey thinks that the scholarship on Syrian Jews in New York City has been missing a large chunk of historical analysis. She had heard and read in popular media about this community of Syrian Jews being fiercely insular, but these observations did not line up perfectly with what her Syrian […]

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Thesis Christ! Andrew Watson

Income inequality in the United States has been on the rise since the mid-1980s. Until that point, the gap between the rich and the poor had been slowly declining, as it had been theorized it should by Simon Kuznets in the 1950s. According to Kuznet’s theory, income inequality rises rapidly when an economy is developing, […]

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Thesis Christ! Patrick Sadil

Disembodied Singing Frogs Central pattern generators are clusters of neurons that allow an organism to sustain rhythmic behavior. Any activity that needs to be turned on, modulated, or just left on without conscious upkeep is controlled by these generators like a heartbeat that, though it speeds up and slows down throughout the day, must be […]

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Thesis Christ! Nathan Eisenberg

Modularity of Neural Plasticity In order to become a licensed London Taxi driver, one must acquire “the Knowledge” of London’s myriad grid of streets. The process usually takes three to four years, with the trainees having to pass a number of tests. The brains of those who do well on the tests and become licensed […]

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Thesis Christ! Aya Maguire

Feces Christ

Mapping Dark Matter Using Gravitational Lensing What we traditionally think of as matter, what we can see and touch, is really only about 5% of all matter in the universe.  The scientific community refers to this as baryonic matter, and in recent years has been able to conclude that the remaining matter in the universe […]

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Thesis Christ: Shantanu Chatterjee

When we talk about things that we must do, we are talking about actions that are prescribed. What is it that prescribes these actions? In philosophical literature, people refer to norms and normativity to explain why it is that people do what they do. It is a topic of debate in the field of legal […]

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Thesis Christ: Wendell Britt

Following the Chinese cultural revolution of the 1980s, an avant-garde literature movement emerged. Linked with postmodernism, it was “a literary Renaissance in which writers were experimenting because they could for the first time,” says Chinese Literature major Wendell Britt. His thesis, advised by Alexei Ditter, will focus on a number of short stories by Yu […]

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Thesis Christ: Brian Moore

Brian Moore

Economics major and and former Student Body President Brian Moore wrote his thesis on government policy change and whether or not this effects investments made by manufacturing companies. In times of economic downturn, Moore says, many say that the government should not try to change policy, as this creates an uncertain economic environment that possibly discourages investment. For instance, “if you’re a small manufacturer, and the government is considering regulating your industry, you’re less likely to invest until you know how that regulation is going to look, or how that regulation might effect you as a firm.”

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Thesis Christ: Clara Redwood


Clara Redwood’s ’13 thesis: “Creating Origami Crease Patterns for Curved 3 Dimensional Objects.”   Clara Redwood’s ‘13 thesis desk is littered with origami paper. Clara, the only girl who is strictly a math major in her class, is writing her thesis with Math Professor Irena Swanson on folding algorithms. Clara, of Buffalo, New York explains […]

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Thesis Christ: Frank Sosa

Frank Sosa

Eight years ago, scientists at Yale University tested seven capuchin monkeys to see whether they deviated from a basic economic theory: that, when faced with an economic choice, humans (or, in this case, primates) will act rationally. Unsurprisingly, they did. But the important finding from the study was that the capuchin monkeys deviated from the […]

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