Two years ago, Jane Fonda pledged $12.5 million to Harvard’s Graduate School of Education to establish a Center to promote the ideas of feminist professor Carol Gilligan. Now Harvard has announced http://www.news.harvard.edu/gazette/2003/01.30/08?fonda.html that plans for the Center have been scrapped, and most of the money will be returned to Fonda. Harvard says this is because of a stock market slump and a lack of faculty leadership. According to The Chronicle of Higher Education, Carol Gilligan, who has since left Harvard for NYU, and was supposed to be advising the project, said she knew nothing about the decision. It’s hard to tell what’s really going on here, but it may well be that Harvard had trouble finding a feminist professor of authentic stature to replace Gilligan and manage the center. It’s not impossible that the discrediting of much of the research of Gilligan and her followers by Christina Hoff Sommers played a role. This could be a quiet way in which Harvard’s new president, Lawrence Summers, continues to make a difference.