From the editor

Double identity

Carrie Golus, AB’91, AM’93

“Most everyone is drawn like a magnet to a stroller, a park bench, or a photograph bearing a matched pair,” Nancy L. Segal, AM’74, PhD’82, writes in Entwined Lives: Twins and What They Tell Us about Human Behavior (Dutton, 1999). “Perhaps this is because near-duplication of body and mind challenges a cherished belief in the individuality of all people, posing a fascinating exception to the general rule.”

Segal, psychology professor and director of the Twin Studies Center at California State University, Fullerton, began her career as a postdoctoral fellow at the Minnesota Study of Twins Reared Apart. The landmark investigation showed that twins raised by different families often had inexplicable similarities and a shared twin culture.

“Investigators affectionately referred to the ‘Giggle Twins,’ sisters who laughed incessantly only when they were together,” Segal writes, “the ‘Jim Twins,’ brothers named Jim who shared interests in carpentry and police work; the ‘Fireman Twins,’ brothers who independently chose to become volunteer firemen; and the ‘Twins with the Seven Rings,’ sisters who both arrived at the study wearing seven rings, three bracelets, and a watch.”

For the photo shoot in “Multiple Choice” art director Tom Tian, AB’10, specifically asked the participants not to coordinate their outfits. One twin pair disregarded this request (and we were glad they did). The others supposedly didn’t coordinate. But you would never know from the pictures.


Kelly and Karyn Peyton, second-years and roommates last academic year. (Photography by Nathan Keay)