The Christchurch Civic Creche Case

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2005 Index 1 (Jan-Mar)


Sunday Star Times
March 27 2005

It's not vanity
Letter to the Editor
by Brian Robinson, Hamilton

Lynley Hood has been accused of vanity, paranoia and being precious in asking Creative New Zealand to rectify their mistake in referring to her doctorate as an "honorary" award.

I am astounded by the criticism she has received.

Hood's award was an academic award for the scholarship involved in her books. The book "A City Possessed" however raised the subject of sex abuse hysteria and was not unexpectedly controversial.

The book was received with dozens of favourable reviews, and has been the catalyst for a high profile petition to review the conviction of Peter Ellis.

Nevertheless, there has been isolated criticism, consisting of personal attacks against Hood, including the labelling of her degree as "honorary"

Anybody who has earned such a prestigious qualification should be rightfully concerned that the qualification is not discredited.

Her concerns are even more understandable given the personal attacks she has already endured.

Those concerns should not be lightly brushed off by the literati as "vanity". The costs involved in rectifying the mistake are small. Of course the mistake should be rectified, and not in the begrudging way that it appears to have been.