Class of 2019 selection: 'Whistling Vivaldi'
President Christopher L. Eisgruber's Princeton Pre-read selection for the Class of 2019 is "Whistling Vivaldi: How Stereotypes Affect Us and What We Can Do" by Claude Steele, one of the nation's leading psychology scholars and the executive vice chancellor and provost at the University of California-Berkeley.
Copies of "Whistling Vivaldi" were distributed in June to members of the Class of 2019, the faculty and some administrative staff. University community members who would like to request individual or group copies may contact Brandon Gaines in the Office of Finance and Treasury at 609-258-2527 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Learn more about 'Whistling Vivaldi'
"Whistling Vivaldi" presents some of the most important social science work done in the last quarter-century, and speaks directly to issues that are important to our nation and our campus community. Professor Steele describes a series of inventive experiments — including some involving Princeton students — that enabled him to develop and test his hypothesis about how negative stereotypes affect us in times of stress. All of us, no matter what our backgrounds may be, will recognize ourselves in some of Professor Steele’s examples.
— President Christopher L. Eisgruber
"Whistling Vivaldi" documents, with strong and persuasive empirical evidence, both the deleterious consequences of stereotype threat and the power of simple, corrective interventions to overcome it. This book offers a compelling account of both the problem of stereotypes and the solution to their influence.
— Deborah Prentice, Dean of the Faculty and the Alexander Stewart 1886 Professor of Psychology and Public Affairs
Listen to Claude Steele discuss "Whistling Vivaldi" on National Public Radio.
The Princeton Pre-read tradition
The Pre-read program, initiated by President Eisgruber in 2013, introduces incoming freshmen to Princeton’s intellectual life.
Members of the incoming class join together to read and discuss a book that President Eisgruber selects and sends to freshmen prior to their arrival on campus. Freshmen then participate in Pre-read discussions with student leaders during Orientation Week and with President Eisgruber in the residential colleges and elsewhere on campus over the course of the academic year. Other University community members also are encouraged to read and discuss the Pre-read selection.
The Pre-read builds upon another Princeton tradition, the Pre-rade, in which freshmen exit the Opening Exercises ceremony and march onto campus through FitzRandolph Gate to be welcomed by upperclassmen and alumni. Together, the Pre-rade and the Pre-read symbolize the rich blend of residential and scholarly life and community spirit that characterizes the Princeton experience.