21. Cicadas of 1970     


The seventeen-year cicadas (Magicicada septemdecem) that descended upon Princeton during the 1970 Commencement were nearly loud enough to drown out the graduation speakers.  Bob Dylan received an honorary degree at the ceremony and later used the surreal event as the basis for his song “Day of the Locusts,” which is quoted on the walls of the Frist Campus Center.

  • To learn more about Bob Dylan, see quotation #2.

  • To learn more about Princeton in the 1960s student protest era, please see quotation #2, and Café Vivian picture #106 and 122.

  • To learn more about recipients of Princeton honorary degrees, see quotation #2, 3, 8, 12, 25, and 35, and Café Vivian picture #14, 65, and 86.