An account of sordidness and redemption by the Dartmouth fraternity member whose Rolling Stone profile blew the whistle on the frat's inhumane hazing practices.
Always trust the brotherhood. Always protect your pledge brothers. What happens in the house stays in the house. Before attending Dartmouth, the worst thing Andrew Lohse had ever done was skip school to attend a John McCain rally. Growing up in suburban New Jersey, he was the typical American honor student: straight As, on the lacrosse team, president of the Model U.N. He dreamed of following in his grandfather’s footsteps and graduating from the Ivy League. When he arrived at Dartmouth, however, he found not the prestigious college of years past, but a wasteland of privilege and moral entropy. And when he rushed Sigma Alpha Epsilon, the fraternity that inspired the rival house in Animal House, Lohse’s once-perfect life, as well as his goals, began to crumble around him.
Lured by free booze and friendly brothers, Andrew pledged Sigma Alpha Epsilon, and soon his life became a dangerous cycle of binge drinking and public humiliation. From chugging vinegar to swimming in a pool of human waste, Lohse’s pledge class endured cruelty and psychological coercion in the hopes of obtaining a bid. Although Andrew succeeded in joining the fraternity, the pattern of abuse continued - except over time, he became the abuser. Told by a contemporary Holden Caulfield, this is a shocking expos of America’s most exclusive institutions and a cautionary tale for modern times.
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