22 Nov 2005

O Tempora, O Mores

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The New York Sun has discovered a recent undergraduate fad spreading from Yale (& Brown?) to Columbia: Naked Parties.

Columbia undergraduates are staging parties with one basic ground rule – all guests must part with their clothes upon arrival. The invitation circulating around Morningside Heights bans three additional items: cameras, masks, and “spikey things.”.. A student who attended the party in the spring, Richard Lipkin, said about 80 to 100 naked people – including a fair number of law and business school students – were concentrated in one apartment. Clothes were dumped near the entrance. Women slightly outnumbered men, and people were generally – if not exclusively – good looking, the type who are often more willing to flout culture’s restrictions on nudity.

Mr. Lipkin said he had no recollection of the music that was played.

“It was surprisingly comfortable,” he said. “Most of the people were quite comfortable. Everyone was pretty mature about it. I don’t think anything inappropriate went on. … People were definitely networking, but there wasn’t anything bad going on.”

A novel published last March by recent Yale graduate Natalie Krinsky (Timothy Dwight, 2004) features an account of her fictionalized heroine attending one.

5 Feedbacks on "O Tempora, O Mores"

Maggie Gallagher

What! Naked parties where “nothing bad happens” and participants are “maturely” networking!!!

This is indeed a scandal.


Things were different in our day, Maggie, but parties were also usually smaller.



One more confirmation that I was born too soon.

George Grenley

Why, in my day, we streaked! Yessirree Bob, we got exercise. These young whippersnappers nowadays just stand around and chat! It’s a scandal, all right.

Did I mention that it was snowing? And we had to streak uphill? Both ways? In July?

Of course, “my day” was thirty years ago…. 8-(


Jeremy Pierce

There is indeed a naked party at Brown that’s been going on for at least 15 years. I started there in the fall of 1992, and it sounded as if it had been going on for a while already. It’s invitation only. No one even knows where or when it will be except the planner until the invitations go out. I think I only met one person who admitted to receiving an invitation, and that person chose not to go. I don’t even remember who it was. It wasn’t a huge affair. It usually got a writeup in the paper after the fact, though, so everyone knew that it happened even if they didn’t get invited.

I didn’t know about the Yale one. I’m inclined to think the Brown one was earlier, simply because no one ever acknowledged that there was another one at Yale. Maybe they just didn’t know about it, though.


are there any naked parties at new england schools, like harvard, mit??
and if so, do you know who i can speak to about them.
thank you! kelly

Never Yet Melted » This Year’s College Fad, Same as Last Year’s: Naked Parties

[…] A bit over a year ago (22 Nov 2005), the New York Sun was reporting on the spread of Naked Parties from Yale (and possibly Brown) to Columbia. […]


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