Lynne Parcells

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April, 1986 issue of Nova, the issue that sparked controversy.

Lynne Parcells (April 14, 1937 - October 31, 1994)[1] was an American Mensan who edited several official and unofficial Mensa-related newsletters that were known for their literary and artistic creativity, and also for controversial political content.

As the editor of Western Michigan Mensa's newsletter, Nova, she got into a political controversy by inserting content from the propaganda of a white supremacist group, the Church of the Creator, in the April 1986 issue of the newsletter. This was done in the context of material that was intended to strongly criticize such groups and their beliefs, and to make readers aware that such virulent strains of opinion exist so they can fight back against them. However, seen out of context, this publication could give the impression that Parcells, Nova, or Mensa supported white supremacy, and some did jump to this conclusion. Shortly after the publication, some prominent Mensans including Harper Fowley and Rose Lee Crutcher were demanding actions ranging from her removal as editor to her expulsion from Mensa. Others, most notably Ralph Rudolph, supported her. This became known as "the NOVA affair", and led to her departure as editor, but no further sanction against her.

Afterward, she started The Insomniac, a publication which included creative writing and artwork as well as commentary on issues (including Mensa politics). Rudolph provided funding for this publication, which was independent of any official connection with Mensa. Later, she published the less-political publications, Devachan and Ambiance.

Notes and references

  1. Message #14665 in M-Grapevine list (requires list membership to access archives)

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