The Dark Secrets of Barth and Williams College: A Comedy in Two Semesters, by Glen Weissenberger
The Dark Secrets of Barth and Williams College is a rabbithole into a world where common sense characters are helpless in the face of hyperbolic depravity. Get ready to be transported to the seedy underbelly of Lutheran academia. The journey is no less hilarious than you might imagine.
At Barth and Williams College, Professor Theodore Roosevelt Thompson is adored by his students and respected by his peers, but the board of trustees endlessly questions the legitimacy of Thompson’s courses on future studies. Nevertheless, when the college president dies during the fall semester of 1968, the board begs Thompson to serve as interim president. Reluctantly, Thompson agrees to assume the post out of a sense of duty. In his new position, it isn’t long before he discovers the college’s extensive involvement in organized crime. As he methodically uncovers the corruption, Thompson’s personal life becomes a struggle. Thompson’s Korean girlfriend, Park Mi-kyung, wants to marry him. Thompson is genuinely enamored with Mi-kyung, but he has a phobia concerning marriage which he has intellectualized in his political and philosophical publications. As the intrigue at the college grows dangerous and tensions with Mi-kyung reach a breaking point, Thompson is challenged to take actions he sought to avoid as a college professor leading a sedentary and cerebral life.