Scope and Content Note
Side A: Remarkable life's journey: Tabriz to Providence. "Armenian Horatio Alger." Influences of grandmother and teachers.
No master plan for life. Education is helicopter from burning village. Friend became famous thief. Classmates from College
Armenien, Beirut. Set of accidents. Thought would teach high school. Offer from Brazil. Armenian, French, Arabic, English,
and other languages. Opposed to studying in England. Friends in California. Applied to Stanford and Berkeley. Did miserably
on S.A.T.: day of earthquake. Admitted both schools. Chose Stanford because accepted there first. Tuition $750. Completed
B.A. two years (Class of 1958). Stayed with Armenian family in San Francisco. Exposure to American culture through movies
and music. Lived Stanford "Village," then Stern Hall. Apartment in Menlo Park. Lived with Ethiopian, one of few Blacks in
student body. Ford Foundation grant for two years' study in Europe and Asia. Selection of dissertation topic: history of Afghanistan.
700 pages, considered a classic, finished Ph.D. in 1964. Taught at San Francisco State, beginning 1959, then 1962 to 1968.
Instructor's salary $5,600, twice that offered by Stanford. Loved to teach. Won Danforth prize for distinguished teaching,
one of 10 prizes in nation. Recruited by University of Texas. Doubled salary and only sabbatical of career. Full professor
at 36. Stanford was small, intimate, a community. Close to numerous professors. Degrees in humanities and history. Adviser
was Wayne Vucinich. Met wives through International Center. President Wallace Sterling. Played soccer. Worked several part-time
jobs. Everthing I am owe to Stanford. Social life and dating. President of International Club. Invited join eating club. No
unpleasant experiences. Travels in California. Wife, Clare Russell, Class of 1959. Engaged days before her graduation. Married
1960. Visits to Iran. Father and sister. Tolerance toward Armenians. Helped Iranian students at Penn during hostage crisis.
Am American: not schizoid about citizenship. Unlike Harvard, Stanford does not cultivate alumni. Only recognition was Centennial
speech. No connections for New York Public Library.
Side B: Stanford graduates succeed on own. Three sons. Considered for presidency of Stanford, but declined. Commitment to
Brown. Fundamental changes made by faculty, not president. Leadership styles. Would choose Stanford again. Am East Coast person.
Stanford's greatness due to Sterling and Terman. Excellence in teaching and research. Recent controversies over federal grants
and Western Civilization. Unity of knowledge. Penn a great unversity but left provostship angrily. Lifetime dream be chancellor
of Berkeley. Agreement with Penn trustees. Presidents come and go. Assets of Brown. Not having fun: job for missionaries.
Tougher than New York Public Library.