THE UR-TEXT of Auto-Tune, the narrative that established the use of technology for pitch correction as a nexus of ethical debate, predates the digital age by half a century. That text is Singin’ in the Rain, the movie musical produced for MGM by Arthur Freed, the Tin Pan Alley tunesmith turned production unit chief, in 1952.
Derrick Bell has a flair for the dramatic exit. The one that made him famous was his highly publicized decision in 1990 to leave his tenured position at Harvard Law School, where he had been the first black scholar ever hired. Bell quit after Harvard refused to offer tenure to a black woman he supported. But Bell had done the same thing at the University of Oregon six years earlier. And he had made the same threat at Harvard ten years before that. And back in 1959 he had quit the first job he ever held, at the Justice Department, over a matter of principle.