The Weekender: ProInhibition At DU

Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.

Swatties, it’s been a long week of studying, agonizing over pass/fail forms, and crying over midterms—or at least, that’s what my week has comprised. So what better way to end the week on Saturday night than by pretending you don’t have a pressing course load to be studying for, abandoning your real stress, and heading down to one of Swarthmore’s most prestigious fraternity houses to simulate the stressful times of Prohibition? It’ll be much more fun than focusing on your real worries; instead, pretend you live in a time in which alcohol is illegal and the Great Depression is about to come crashing down upon you and take away everything you own. Just imagining that for a night will really put the threat of finals into perspective!

Prohibition will be everything you ever hoped for: a party celebrating a period of time in which alcohol was absent, but fun was no less abundant than it is now at Swarthmore! Swarthmore during the times of Prohibition was doubtless a thriving center of social life, and the past’s wild excitement will certainly be recreated tomorrow night. If you’re still unsure, read on for the reasons that Prohibition will more than just another frat party.

It’s simple: a themed party is immediately ten times more fun than any unthemed party. This statement cannot be challenged—it’s just the rules. Examples include DU’s Hootenanny earlier this year, during which country music provided the background for a house filled with flannel-clad college kids turned redneck for the night. Or who could ever forget Toga Party, once again hosted by DU, when we all stripped our beds of their sheets and wore nothing but badly draped togas that dragged all around the muddy floor throughout the night? Greek life went Greek, and the theme improved the party exponentially. Just last weekend, Paces hosted a Masquerade event where students again took the theme seriously, dressed in formal evening attire and masks. The overachieving nature of the Swarthmore student ensures that a themed party will be met with perfect adherence. Nobody came to toga party in real clothing! A safety pin was the worst way that anybody dared cheat while fastening their sheets around their body. And if you were at Masquerade without a mask and immaculate evening wear, I almost guarantee that you felt too uncomfortable to stay and rushed back to your dorm to bemoan your lack of formal attire.

So if a themed party is already more fun, a party with the theme of Prohibition is a guaranteed success. Everyone wants to think about legislative history and the illegality of alcohol on a Saturday night! It’s Swarthmore, after all—if you thought you could get a break from studying on a weekend, think again. DU is literally forcing you to learn things just by having a party. Now you inadvertently know that Prohibition was in the 1920s and that it made alcohol illegal in America! Welcome to Swarthmore, where nobody ever gets any time off.

Even if you didn’t have the pleasure of attending each and every one of the themed parties that have occurred since the beginning of the year, or since the beginning of your Swarthmore career, it’s not too late to start now. Our all-inclusive frats are publicizing Prohibition well, and it’s open to all who want to come. So make sure to stress out first of all about how to dress—it’s 1920s themed, so you’d better make sure to look like you stepped straight out of the Great Gatsby. This party will be even more elaborate than any that Jay Gatsby ever held, though—the refreshments and food provided, along with a likely superb music playlist, are bound to outdo any that could really have existed in the 1920s. In fact, Saturday’s Swarthmore soirée is bound to make any state school student supremely jealous. Past and present will combine to be a hugely entertaining event celebrating one of American government’s worst decisions of the 20th century and the innovative ways that citizens of our great country still enjoyed black market fun. DU will celebrate the spirit of Prohibition tomorrow night. Don’t miss it!

Disclaimer: Prohibition was a time in which alcohol was illegally manufactured and distributed on the black market. The fact that DU’s party has the theme of Prohibition does not imply or suggest that the fraternity will be serving alcohol to minors.

Correction: The Daily Gazette changed the title of the article from “Pro-Her-Inhibition” to “ProInhibition.”


  1. “The fact that DU’s party has the theme of Prohibition does not imply or suggest that the fraternity will be serving alcohol to minors.”


  2. “The fact that DU’s party has the theme of Prohibition does not imply or suggest that the fraternity will be serving alcohol to minors.”

    …but the fact that they serve alcohol to minors does imply and suggest that they’ll be doing the same this weekend!

  3. Can we talk about how DU throwing a 1920s theme party is appropriation of gay culture?

    not to mention the Prohibition theme appropriates a women’s political movement … to get people drunk

    • Is it appropriation of gay culture? I wasn’t aware of this, and would love to hear more details.

      As far as the appropriation of a women’s political movement, I think the Prohibition theme is more aimed at getting at speakeasies, where people did get drunk.

      • isn’t Gay the first thing that comes to mind when you hear 1920s Speakeasy Party? I just think of glory holes and high heels

  4. my favorite part of DU is the rape tunnel that you have to go through to get to the wonderful basement they have!

    if you make it past the staircase you’re bound to have a good time!

    talk about rape culture!

    PS: bravo “The Weekender” you’re weekly insights into the swat social scene are impeccable

    • Is anyone, at all, going to reply to this? I would really appreciate some insight as to why someone thought this was acceptable (including the DG–though I’m not sure if they have say over article titles/censoring/how that works– so please forgive my ignorance).

  5. If you actually read the article it’s very obvious that ‘The Weekender’ is hardly being complimentary about DU or their Prohibition party. It seems unlikely that the article is associated with DU, they may well not even be aware of it. From what I understand they’re not avid readers of the Daily Gazette, people usually aren’t very nice to them on here. See “rape tunnel” above.

    On a separate note ‘The Weekender’ is a rag. It’s not funny, often offensive and the Daily Gazette needs to evaluate whether or not it wants to sully its high standard of journalistic integrity by publishing it weekly.

  6. I know that neither the author of this article nor anyone in DU came up with this title. Not sure what happened

  7. Ok. I’m not a DU liaison or anything, but I feel it’s my obligation (ob-li-gay-shun) to point out how heteronormative this theme is. Like why can’t it be a 2020 Gender-Inclusivity theme where we’re all happy and free and equal? Now that would be a fun idea.

  8. Ok, I’m glad you changed the title, but putting it as a “correction” without actually responding or apologizing is Not Cool.

  9. We appreciate all the comments we’ve received on this story regarding the title. You are the best gauge we have of what we’re doing well and what we’re doing poorly. We have changed it to “ProInhibition at DU” rather than “Pro-Her-Inhibition.” The Weekender is not affiliated with DU, and the title was an editorial choice. We hoped to make a pun on a fraternity serving alcohol in the name of a largely women’s movement, aimed at ending political corruption and domestic violence. We do not promote rape culture or hate women (seriously, we don’t). We’ve chosen to rename the article “ProInhibition” to illustrate the lively, cheerful atmosphere of 1920s Speakeasies and the irony of the name of the party. We hope all hers, his, and theirs will lose their inhibitions (if they want to) at the DU party.

    The Daily Gazette

    • Correction: You don’t intentionally promote rape culture. I’m sure you didn’t mean to, I’m sure you don’t hate women, but that’s often how rape culture gets promoted — by people not thinking things true or making bad jokes or just not knowing any better.

      I’m grateful(ish) for your fauxpology, but a real one would have been nicer.

          • Ugh, I regretted that as soon as I posted it. I’m sorry for the personal attack, which I should not have made.

            But I do object to the way your comment attempted to undermine my complaints and concerns. I’m insisting on a greater accountability by the Daily Gazette because I don’t think they have yet (as of writing this) 1) admitted wrong and 2) apologized for it.

            Rape culture is insidious and calling out rape culture is often hard to do because we’re too often accused of being oversensitive or humorless. I take rape culture personally because it’s affected me and my loved ones personally, and I’m not going to leave that metaphorical horse alone, as it were.

    • When you make an apology, you shouldn’t “explain the joke” and then say you don’t promote rape culture/hate women. That title DID promote rape culture, the comments make it clear that that’s how most people read it.

      A good apology would have stated that choosing that title was bad, because it promoted rape culture (even if it wasn’t your intent), and that you’ll be careful not to do so again in the future.

  10. i think we’re all over looking the fact that there is a serious issue with the DU rape tunnel.

    i think we should just take their house!

    why should they be allowed to have a house on campus, let alone a rape tunnel?

    • I agree, the DU rape tunnel is a serious problem and it must be addressed.

      I want to see some more transparency from the brothers of this “nationally chartered” organization. Is it part of the national requirements to have a RAPE TUNNEL within your fraternity house?

      Seriously, enough is enough. Honestly, at the very least, I’d like to see a group like the Thetas take over the DU house, but we definitely need some serious discussion on what to do with this rape tunnel bungalow.

  11. Honestly the problem with Swarthmore is that you all insist on finding aggression in everything ever written and being antagonized by things that are actually just inoffensive. The title was offensive. The article was not. Everyone attempt to take five seconds to breathe and read something without having a seizure due to your paranoid perception of whatever microaggression you think you see.

    • I hope you realize your comment just used the word “title” which contains the word “tit” in it. I know you may not actively be doing so, but you’re perpetuating the structural objectification of women by using words like that. A woman is more than just a “tit”. Check your privilege.

  12. While I do not attend Swarthmore, I also share some concerns about the rape tunnel. Although I have heard that DU has “sober brothers” on duty at their larger parties, I seem to only find trolls lurking around the rape tunnel waiting for their victims.

    This is an issue that must be addressed!

  13. Hey guys,

    Salma here. As I’m sure you’ve all heard by now, The Not Yet Pansexuals will be catering DU’s (what we at TNYP have become keen on referring to as) “Proexhibition of the tunnel of chicanery, LOLs, and rape”. We were pretty proud of ourselves for coming up for that one! But ok, now that the ice has fissured, I’d just like to point out one line we at TNYP take offense to, “Welcome to Swarthmore, where nobody ever gets any time off.” Ummm take out “any time” and what do you get? Subliminal messaging much? Gross.


  14. Ok, I never go to the frats, and I’ve never heard of the rape tunnel before. Could someone explain what it is?

      • They’re satirizing the anti-Greek life position. By claiming DU has a rape tunnel (which they do not), they suggest that anti-Greeks are exaggerating the rape-culture at the fraternities.

  15. First of all, I’m a huge rape tunnel fan and I’m pretty distressed by all the negative attention that the DU rape tunnel is garnering. I’ve seen a lot of rape tunnels in my day, and the one in Swarthmore DU is one of the finest I’ve ever had the privilege to see. You all should step back and take a long hard look in the mirror if you have a problem with DU’s rape tunnel, because its truly an honor to be able to see such a fine example.

  16. I think if we wanna talk rape tunnels, the field house tunnel and basically every stairwell ever are now apart of the conversation

    But honestly though, this column is never funny or cool. Quit it.

    • So the DU rape tunnel apologists finally begin coming out of the woodwork! Let the mansplaining commence! The fact is that other stairwells and tunnels are not constantly crawling with creepy frat brothers.

      • Yeah, I have to agree with “Outraged” on this one. Like I said above, I’m pretty much an authority on rape tunnels, and the field house tunnel pales in comparison with the DU rape tunnel. It’s like comparing the 2012 NY Jets with the 1985 Chicago Bears: the comparison just doesn’t hold up.

  17. OMG DU parties are like, so amazing! Seriously, I don’t even know why anyone else throws parties on campus!

  18. I don’t understand why the rape tunnel is getting all the love in this debate. Rape attics have been around longer and have a much better reputation. If DU really wants to be on the level of their national charter they should ditch the out of date rape tunnel and move on to a more classic and philanthropical rape attic. You know what they say, if things get erratic, head on up to the attic.

  19. Rape, rape, rape, rape, rape, rape, rape. IS THAT ALL YOU PEOPLE THINK ABOUT?! Show a little class and mix it up a bit. Maybe bring into the discussion: DU’s Foyer of Fisting, Dungeon of Defecation, Bedroom of Bollocks Binging, or AT THE VERY LEAST Sofa of Solicitation. C’mon people; it’s 2013. Wake up.

  20. RIP to all the brave swatties who dared to venture down the dastardly tunnel de rape’s corridors. You shall not have squirmed in vain.

  21. So after reading all of this about the rape tunnel, I went to DU last
    night to check it out. To say the least i was not impressed. I saw nobody getting raped. I saw nobody getting harassed. All of you need to take these posts seriously. This isn’t a forum for trolls!

    • All of this talk about trolls has me incensed!! I am a troll and I am damn proud of my heritage! I’m sick and tired of reading all of these posts denigrating trolls; we are a prestigious and industrious race! End the negative connotation connected win troll so that maybe my children can live in a world free from these insensitive judgements.

      -Xaryc Slimesbourge IV
      Troll University of Gondor, class of ’04

      • Why would there be a troll city in Gondor, a city of men. That makes no sense. Check your privilege please…

        • I think your comment makes my argument all the more salient: trolls are not welcome in the areas of men, and this needs to change!

          Also, Gondor is not a city, but an entire region. We trolls inhabit the sparsely populated hills of Ithilien.

          Now go back to your posh lifestyle, troll hater, and may the gods frown on you in times of prosperity!

          Xaryc (pronounced Zark)

  22. As The Weekender I feel that I need to comment on this thread. I say I say goddam you guys are a bunch of trolls. This thread reminds me of the highway from fort worth to dallas… no curves. I think you should all eat your own hats and maybe next time dont comment like such trolls. I say I say you guys need to be taught a lesson. This isn’t a forum for nonsensical jibberish I’ll tell you that much.

    The Weekender

    • The majority of comments on this article are not people trolling; they are people simply lamenting how poorly written this article is and how little sense it makes.

  23. Rape attic > rape tunnel. I destroyed the pathetic rape tunnel. Hey rape tunnel, you are so 2003 bro.

    I’m full to say the least. See y’all at margaritaville!!

    Rape attic out

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