The Seven Sisters and the Failure of Women's Education Founded by obstinate intellectuals, protective of academic respectability, the Seven Sister colleges have failed to produce a significant number of alumnae whose achievements approach their male equivalents. This casual history studies these school's chronic problems and concludes that their survival depends on imagination and initiative rather than on foundation grants and cross-listed courses. Funding and status have caused difficulties from the beginning and the curriculum offerings have been officially conservative in ""safe imitation"" of Ivy League programs. But the failure of their graduates to achieve political and economic clout, to get a legitimate share of academic positions, to seek recognition for their work is the major issue, easily explained in the context of our society but distressing and wasteful nonetheless. Baker, a Smith alumna, offers no concrete proposals but suggests the areas where these schools could take the lead: curriculum (especially women's studies), faculty hiring, and the women's movement itself. Despite the frivolous title, this is a serious attempt to consider the direction these colleges should take in the future. Not conclusive but good for discussion at an afternoon tea.