April 6, 2017

"Once upon a time, explains Kipnis, female students celebrated their sexual freedom and agency."

"Today, students and faculty alike focus on their vulnerability. This, in her view, is a criminally retrograde story line, one that recasts women as pitiful creatures who cannot think and act for themselves — and it’s a story they seem to have internalized. Armed with Title IX and a new, academically fashionable definition of 'consent' — which insists that sex is never truly consensual between adults unless they both have equal power — women can now retroactively declare they never truly agreed to specific sexual acts, even whole relationships. 'We seem to be breeding a generation of students, mostly female students, deploying Title IX to remedy sexual ambivalences or awkward sexual experiences,' Kipnis writes, 'and to adjudicate relationship disputes post-breakup — and campus administrators are allowing it.'... 'There’s an excess of masculine power in the world,' Kipnis writes, “and women have to be educated to contest it in real time, instead of waiting around for men to reach some new stage of heightened consciousness — just in case that day never comes.'"

From a NYT review of "Unwanted Advances: Sexual Paranoia Comes to Campus" by Laura Kipnis

63 comments:

Michael K said...

Wait until the trannies take over all female sports,

Jupiter said...

'We seem to be breeding a generation of students, mostly female students, deploying Title IX to remedy sexual ambivalences or awkward sexual experiences,' Kipnis writes, 'and to adjudicate relationship disputes post-breakup — and campus administrators are allowing it.'

Boy, has she got that wrong. She actually imagines that all this claptrap is somehow related to sexual relationships. The assholes who dream this stuff up are not trying to help little Suzie get her wee-wee wet without any sads. They are trying to destroy Western civilization. They seem to be making progress. Kipnis is so stupid she doesn't even realize that she is the problem, not the solution.

Kevin said...

"Kipnis is so stupid she doesn't even realize that she is the problem, not the solution."

Credit that she actually sees the problem and is calling it out publicly. The backlash she'll face for doing so will likely be significant.

Many people see the symptoms first, and only through continued engagement realize the true cause of the issue later. In other words, after sifting through all the backlash, she'll start to see the issue even more clearly.

tim in vermont said...

I am just about ready to go ex-pat.

Kevin said...

I haven't read her book or the review, but I have to think the internet was a large force in bringing about the change she describes. The difficulty of keeping secrets and the ease of shaming others have both gone up exponentially.

I think that was likely the tipping point, which enabled the power seekers to gain power through collective representation.

YoungHegelian said...

This, in her view, is a criminally retrograde story line, one that recasts women as pitiful creatures who cannot think and act for themselves — and it’s a story they seem to have internalized.

Actually, I think the story line is that women are just too good for the wicked male world. There was a lot of Victorian "Angel of the Household" thinking that snuck into feminism via the suffragette & temperance movements, two movements that thought that female involvement in politics would make politics a more moral undertaking.

It's one of my hobby horses, & I've brought it up in this forum before, that modern American culture has no idea of what the feminine side of evil might look like. Women are just assumed to be more moral than men, even when they obviously aren't being so.

Achilles said...

If you realize their goal is to divide men and women and destroy the fabric of society rather than actually help women what they are doing makes more sense.

EDH said...

Beavis: Shut up, Butt-Head, your moms a slut.

Butt-Head: She may be a slut, but at least my name doesn't rhyme with penis.

buwaya said...

There isnt a genuine educational purpose to non-technological courses in American colleges anymore, and even a significant portion of the courses in the sciences are effectively useless timewasters.
The only remaining purpose of a residential college is networking, personal and professional, and this is being destroyed, as we see.
In the liberal arts self-education is a more sound approach and far more efficient.
The entire industry is ripe for replacement.

Jupiter said...

Kevin said...

"Credit that she actually sees the problem and is calling it out publicly."

Kipnis is just whining about a little Left Fascist doctrinal dispute. She wants to see Western civilization buried, but not in her backyard.

Fernandinande said...

buwaya said...
The entire industry is ripe for replacement.


The ludicrous outcome of Griggs v. Duke Power has done wonders for Big University.

Roughcoat said...

I'm so glad I'm not young anymore. (Ref: Maurice Chevalier & Hermione Gingold)

Francisco D said...

I appreciate Dr. Kipnis' willingness to speak out because she has already been investigated by Northwestern U. for triggering student snowflakes with her writing.

Note that she is not a conservative who tries to "trigger" left wing activists by challenging their assumptions, like Milo, Ben Shapiro, David Horowitz, etc.. She is an old fashioned liberal with intellectual integrity - a vanishing breed.

Roughcoat said...


buwaya: yes.


tim in vermont: where are you thinking of going ex-pat? I'm genuinely curious. I can always find parts of America that I'll like or even love. The rest of the world is not so attractive to me in terms of a permanent living arrangement. Costa Rica, e.g., is appealing (I've been there) but still too Latin for my taste. Similarly Ireland where my family is from but it's also highly problematic. Australia and New Zealand, equally attractive and highly prolematic. Maybe I'm just too old and set in my American ways to go ex-pat. Not that that's a bad thing. My family on both sides has only been in America for three generations and I guess in a way we're still working on getting it right.

Todd said...

which insists that sex is never truly consensual between adults unless they both have equal power and they are both women because as everyone knows men are ALWAYS rapists

There, fixed it for you to reflect actual reality in higher ED...

Sebastian said...

"Today, students and faculty alike focus on their vulnerability. This, in her view, is a criminally retrograde story line, one that recasts women as pitiful creatures who cannot think and act for themselves — and it’s a story they seem to have internalized." True, but as others have noted, also false: in prog politics, vulnerability is a power tool.

"Armed with Title IX and a new, academically fashionable definition of 'consent' — which insists that sex is never truly consensual between adults unless they both have equal power — women can now retroactively declare they never truly agreed to specific sexual acts, even whole relationships." Right. Which tells us that the vulnerability shtick is not about vulnerability, it's about power.

"'There’s an excess of masculine power in the world,' Kipnis writes, “and women have to be educated to contest it in real time, instead of waiting around for men to reach some new stage of heightened consciousness — just in case that day never comes.'"" Prog women are contesting "masculine power" more effectively, and not just masculine power. It is about the transvaluation of values. The only thing retrograde is Kipnis' failure to recognize it fully.

Jupiter said...

buwaya said...

"The only remaining purpose of a residential college is networking, personal and professional, and this is being destroyed, as we see."

Well, no, there is still the credentialing. It is very difficult to get a good job without a college degree, simply because it is so easy to get a college degree if you are at all capable that no one will believe you are capable if you haven't got one.

Lewis Wetzel said...

"'There’s an excess of masculine power in the world,' Kipnis writes . . ."
This is simply an assertion. You couldn't prove it, you couldn't even define terms. What is "masculine power"? What is an "excess" of it? What is meant by "the world"?
This is what happens when you subject the real world to literary critical theory. You create nonsense.

Michael K said...

In the liberal arts self-education is a more sound approach and far more efficient.
The entire industry is ripe for replacement.


Yes. I encountered this a few years ago when my youngest daughter was in college. In her freshman general ed courses, she was being taught lies. I helped her with her final exam reviews and found in the review handouts that things were being taught that are just lies.

For example, she was taught that "The Silent Majority" of the 60s was made up of "white people who refused to accept the 1964 Civil Rights Act." No mention of Nixon or the Vietnam War,

This is not accidental.


tcrosse said...

If college women weren't so horny a lot of these problems would disappear.

Lewis Wetzel said...

What I want to see is structural criticism itself subjected to structural criticism.
You would learn, I think, that structural theory is itself a means of oppression.

Jupiter said...

Michael K said...
"Wait until the trannies take over all female sports,"

Actually, I think the feminists will be relieved. When your entire political, economic, intellectual and personal reason for being is rooted in the assertion that there are no meaningful differences between the sexes, female sports are, ah, unhelpful. As are war, work, thought, art, science, driving, ....

buwaya said...

On another aspect, this college leftist business may seem like a tempest in a teapot, but I think it is far more significant than most current political disputes, the budget say, or the Supreme Court.

As Glenn Reynolds is so fond of saying, culture is upstream of politics. Anyone who paid attention to Allan Bloom thirty years ago would have been well ahead in the prognostication game, the only hitch being the strength of the resistance, or the inertia of the cultural capital of western civilization.

My personal spark of hope was that the conservative Asian influence on US education would turn that vessel away from the rocks, but it seems the US system is far better at corrupting Asians than I expected.

Bill Peschel said...

Don't forget that all of this was triggered by President Obama's Department of Edumacation, which expanded Title IX to allow for kangaroo courts to try men without due process.

(Although now women are getting bit. Coastal Carolina University recently disbanded its women's cheerleading squad over one ex-cheerleader's allegation that they were prostitutes, among other crimes.)

Rick said...

Jupiter said...
They are trying to destroy Western civilization


This seems to misunderstand their motivations.

Title IX radicals are interest group advocates. They don't care about principles or fairness, only about what supports their constituency. To justify the greatest level of advocacy possible they have perverted the meaning of freedom to mean "without consequence". This is consistent with other left wing activism which refers to employment as slavery (among other examples) in an effort to de-normalize the expectation of incurring any cost in a voluntary exchange.

The outrageous processes and rulings are all perfectly consistent with the "without consequence" construction. Their end-state goal is for any accusation by a woman to be treated as conclusive proof. Of course the public would never accept this as stated so they create hidden processes staffed by trusted acolytes to achieve it behind the scenes while their media and institutional allies protect the process by attacking anyone trying to expose them.

rhhardin said...

Whatever program feminism adopts, you have to sell it to women.

It changes accordingly.

The constant is that it will express needs.

Chris N said...

Old sexual agents bemoan the new ones....a lot depends on how you define freedom.

Lewis Wetzel said...

Here's the problem: if you believe that human culture is a narrative structure, and that this narrative structure is "wrong" in the sense that it embeds things like racism and sexism within it, you have no ability to criticize it. You can never know that your criticism is not part of that same structure of oppression. Your belief that you are able to stand outside the narrative and meaningfully critique it is a privilege that is as much a construct as "maleness" or "whiteness." There is no reason why the privilege of a social critic is more legitimate than the privilege of a rich white guy.

Rick said...

I'm put off by the "the real victims are women" BS. Men's lives are ruined while those doing it are celebrated and promoted but public policy people only care if women are negatively impacted.

We can see the outsized attention and donations breast cancer gets because it's identifiably female and thus political. Along those lines see Matt Damon's commercial about clean water. He says the program is critical to "bring clean water to women and their families around the globe".

Apparently there is no common humanity anymore.

buwaya said...

The whole Title IX and "rape" business is merely a symptom.
Its just a local, parochial expression of the world view the entire educational system is locked into.
The source of the damage is the content of the Liberal Arts courses, and even more so the content of teacher-training and educational theory courses that program the personnel running K-12.

Francisco D said...

tcrosse said: "If college women were not so horny ..."

Then I would not have enjoyed college as much. My moment of awakening came when I realized young women in college were just as horny as young men.

Bruce Hayden said...

It's going to be interesting. Muslims just took over from Blacks as being more aggrieved as victims. Not sure where the trannies, or even gays fit. Expect that Lesbians, at least, still outrank Muzzies, thanks to their over representation in gender studies depts. the problem for women here is that for Muslims, it is the males who lack agency. The theory seems to get hat they so lack physical restraint, that any unprotected female, esp showing any skin, should expect to be gang raped. They just can't help themselves. Which puts it on women to dress modestly, don't drink around Muslim men, and always be protected, either in a group or be with a guy.

The agency thing really bothers me with young women in college. I caught the tail end of the era where co-eds were protected from men in college. We went from no inter visitation to the two sexes sharing floors in dorms, in 4 short years. And, indeed, things hadn't changed notably between when I graduated and my Kidd I'd, some 40 years later. At least formally. Informally though, coeds were now binge drinking, then engaging in drunken hookups on a regular basis. I was surprised a decade of so ago when a friend told me that her daughter wasn't dating, but rather college aged young adults just hung out in groups she didn't mention (and may not have known about) the binge drinking and drunken hookups, which have replaced the dating that we had in college.

I just don't think that women, in general, do that well emotionally with drunken hookups. There used to be an informal bargain, with the guys getting their sex, in trade for some level of emotional commitment. No longer. They now get hornet, drunk, laid, and then regret the whole thing when the guys don't reciprocate. Of course guys look at sex differently. They are wired to get laid as often as possible, with as many females as possible. The women though are wired to look for commitment, since historically, sex, for them could lead to 9 months of pregnancy and a dozen or so years of parenthood. The stakes historically for women having sex were far, far higher than for men. So, women are, to some extent, wired to want commitment from guys when having sex with them. Which, of course, they aren't getting with drunken hookups. And, for many of them in college, that is their choice - drunken sex or no male companionship. Not pretty.

D.D. Driver said...

Maybe we should bring back the chastity belt. It could be a wifi connected device with a breathylizer. If the student blows a .08 or higher, the belt wouldn't come off. And she could have a secret password so that consent is never ambiguous. We have the technology.

Todd said...

D.D. Driver said...
Maybe we should bring back the chastity belt. It could be a wifi connected device with a breathylizer. If the student blows a .08 or higher, the belt wouldn't come off. And she could have a secret password so that consent is never ambiguous. We have the technology.

4/6/17, 11:02 AM


Sorry, still no go.

https://reason.com/blog/2017/03/14/female-drake-u-student-initiates-sex-wit

The student, "John Doe," was expelled for sexual misconduct—ostensibly because he engaged in nonconsensual sex with a female student, "Jane Doe."

Jane Doe admitted to initiating the oral sex on John Doe without his consent.

She went to another fraternity house, uninvited, and climbed into bed with an unsuspecting person. She "jumped on top of him," and he told her to leave, according to the lawsuit.

She then headed to a different bedroom, removed her shirt, and initiated oral sex on a third person. She spent the night there, and went home in the morning

Roy Jacobsen said...

I'm still waiting for someone to explain all the benefits to individuals and to society of this "sexual freedom and agency" (aka rampant promiscuity). Anyone care to enlighten me?

buwaya said...

There is no benefit at all, it is merely the indiscipline that comes with decadence. Most of these kids have no purpose, no sense of obligation, and tremendous personal insecurity.

Owen said...

buwaya: what you said. I don't quite know how to rank the collapse of higher education in the larger series of catastrophes, crises, and premenstrual cramps that our society is facing today. I tend to rank it highly, as apparently you do also.

Why? Well, because it gets put in our faces so frequently. There are many, many schools. And they are highly wired, i.e. their effective cross-section in our available awareness. Lots of self-promoting activists with excellent media skills; lots of barely-older observers and reporters in the media world. Combine that breadth of channel with the ease of stirring up highly-photogenic trouble, and you get a very toxic brew.

What happens next? Well, schools are a business. They like to collect money and deliver product in a predictable way. So when the SJWs show up, the first priority is to buy them off or calm them down. Because the SJWs have such excellent media presence and skills, and offer the highly-photogenic of Brave Hot Chicks Offering Soft Drinks To The Power Tools, the school managers almost always capitulate.

This supine negotiating posture leads to more of the same. Big surprise.

The trouble is, schools represent not just the current class and the local operation, but all the accumulated social capital, the hopes and fears of all the years, as donors and parents and applicants pour their substance into the project. So the fires lit by the SJWs are like the fires lit in a coal seam, burning deep underground and for generations, consuming far more than we want to acknowledge.

Thus my sense that as a cultural and social risk factor, the ongoing collapse of higher education has been grossly underrated.

Professor Althouse got out just in time...

buwaya said...

Owen, I guess my point isn't well made.
The photogenic scandals are just symptoms, epiphenomena.
So are the co-opted school administrators, and the twitter mobs.

The real problem is as Alan Bloom said, or perhaps you may want to go back to Buckley, the fundamental intellectual corruption of the heights of the educational system, the teachers of the teachers of the teachers, who teach the leadership of this society.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

We seem to be breeding a generation of students, mostly female students, deploying Title IX to remedy sexual ambivalences or awkward sexual experiences,' Kipnis writes, 'and to adjudicate relationship disputes post-breakup — and campus administrators are allowing it

That's irredeemably sexist when I say it, though. I'm glad Kipins found the "this hurts women" angle on this mess--I'm pretty sure that's the only part our betters on the Left will even pretend to give a shit about.
Ruining the lives of tons of guys who didn't really do anything wrong? Too bad, suck it up.
Possibly harming women by altering their worldview and setting back the cause of self-empowered feminism? Whoa, slow down, maybe this is something worth talking about!

Well, it's progress I guess.

Owen said...

Buwaya: thanks, I wasn't very clear, in part because I wasn't focused on the level that you describe.

You get a permanent paid-up membership in Pundit Club for "epiphenomena."

On the merits, yes, Bloom and others diagnosed this well. Maybe it was easier for them, back then: the battle lines were more clearly drawn, or the two (or more?) poles of the debate were more strongly defined. Conservatives (defined very broadly) were less cowed, ashamed, confused. There was a belief that most people, or at least a lot of people, still "got" the values being debated.

But 50 years of Prog acid have dissolved a lot of structure.

Your reference to "teachers of the teachers" reminds me of the hidden importance of machine tools. The rise of Connecticut River Valley industry at the birth of the United States was due to inventions such as cotton gins and assembly lines with cheap water power. But it was also due, more deeply, to a culture that valued not just products and the tools that made them, but the tools that made...tools. A meta-mechanical culture.

This also loomed large before WW2 because our critical strategic shortage, with the longest lead time, was not tanks and guns and bombers. It was machine tools. Lathes and their operators. Boring and cutting tools, bits, chucks, jigs, templates, patterns and the talent to use them.

I look at higher education and I wonder what machine tools of the intellect are left to us.

tim in vermont said...

My family has been here three hundred years, almost, but Ireland would be nice, or rural France, maybe even England or Wales.

I am genuinely sick of the media environment here.

buwaya puti said...

Owen,
As an old machine tool man, I agree completely.

Lewis Wetzel said...

If men have all the power, women can only get power if men allow it. There is no outside power to appeal to. The sexual revolution has resulted in more women being sexual available to men, and thanks to birth control and legal abortion, fewer consequences of sexual contact for the men.

ALP said...

HS class of 1979; first academic experience was as a fine arts student in the early 80's. I was a complete fag hag, spending my drunken evenings on the gay dance floors. One year, my gay male friends and I challenged each other to compete for the most hookups (one night stands back then). Needless to say, I've got some regrettable sexual unions in my past. However, it is so clearly the fault of getting drunk and stupid - we just chalked it up to a temporary stupidity and...MOVED ON.

I also fell asleep at the wheel twice - obviously passed out at the wheel. If a feminist today does that, does she blame the CAR?

Roughcoat said...

Becoming an ex-pat would be, for me, tantamount to spitting on my whole past and I just can't do that. My Irish and German great grandparents came here for very good reasons and I think those reasons are still applicable. I'd love to be wealthy enough to live for half of every year in Ireland or rural France but I just couldn't make a permanent thing of it. The rest of the world is just too different, for better and ill, from America. When you travel extensively you really and truly get to understand that the idea of American exceptionalism is real. America is my hope and I still love it. I still large part of it, in fact many most of it, is wondrous, and those parts that are in trouble are still redeemable. So, no ex-patting for me.

ALP said...

Buwaya:
"In the liberal arts self-education is a more sound approach and far more efficient."

True THAT! I have had this debate so many times, arguing that one could simply avail themselves of their public library, covering history, philosophy for a true liberal arts education. Yet so many people confuse "education" with "credentials backed by an accreditation process". And it just doesn't "count" unless you've spent tens of thousands of $$$$ getting there.

Roy Jacobsen said...

"If men have all the power..."

That premise is, at best, shaky.

Steven said...

"sex is never truly consensual between adults unless they both have equal power"

If they actually believed this, they'd say that Bill Clinton was a rapist many times over as governor and president, so Hillary was an enabler of rape, and thus too morally-compromised to even consider electing.

285exp said...

The progressives are always so surprised when the monsters they unleash start eating them.

Michael K said...

"I'd love to be wealthy enough to live for half of every year in Ireland or rural France "

I used to have a plan to retire in rural France. Half of England's middle class is there now.

I'm too old now.

I had a patient a long time ago who had a great plan and lived it. He retired at 65 and he and his wife moved to Crete. They didn't speak a word of Greek but they told me they had no trouble at all. Then they moved to Paris for a few years and then, when he was about 77, they moved back the US and bought a place in Leisure World. He was worried about getting sick in another country. He had a colonoscopy and the GE guy found the smallest colon cancer I've ever seen. His luck had held.

I was standing at his bedside visiting when my wife called hysterical to tell me the Challenger had blown up. I thought for a second her car had blown up.

tim in vermont said...

Now the dating sites are filtering for education credentials, so autodidacts get ruled out, even on Tinder. What a world, what a world.

Lewis Wetzel said...

Buwaya:
My personal spark of hope was that the conservative Asian influence on US education would turn that vessel away from the rocks, but it seems the US system is far better at corrupting Asians than I expected.
My experience with Asians in Hawaii, and from working with many "asianeers" from California, is that they are get-along, go-along people (standard disclaimer about ethnic generalization here). PC is just another set of rules you have to follow to become successful.

"In the liberal arts self-education is a more sound approach and far more efficient."
The undergrad survey courses are valuable. The rot doesn't set in until grad school (or so I've heard). Scientific knowledge accumulates, knowledge in the arts does not, other than for some of its technical aspects. We don't use the English language more effectively than we did five centuries ago. Impressionist paintings aren't objectively "better" than renaissance paintings.
Why do we keep handing out PhD's in English lit? In the past the arts prepared a gentleman for a life in society. Now it's a job-training program. Or arts students seem to think so.

buwaya said...

" so autodidacts get ruled out,"

I wouldn't think so - men don't care what womens credentials are.
Do they? If so human nature has changed a lot.

Oh, you mean women care what MEN's credentials are.
That seems a bit silly. The truly important thing is his 1042.

buwaya said...

Er, 1040
I have been struggling with a 1042, is my only excuse.

buwaya said...

"The rot doesn't set in until grad school (or so I've heard)."

No, the rot, for the Liberal Arts, is in in undergrad, even in the University of California, and I understand Cal State is a wasteland.

This is the UCLA department of classics, serving 44,000 students, grad and undergrad.

http://classics.ucla.edu/faculty/

16 out of 4000 faculty, and 26,000 headcount in "administration"
They cover ALL of Greek and Latin language, and all western literature from Homer to Augustine (or maybe Erasmus, its that bad)

Michael K said...

" so autodidacts get ruled out,"

The new trend is to "certificate" courses. My daughter took a few after her Masters. "Project Management" and that sort of thing.

She is off doing something else now. Big time Art.

n.n said...

Female chauvinists' war on men, women, and babies, too.

Roughcoat said...

I spent three weeks in Crete over 30 years ago and it seemed longer than three week, but in the best sense, as if time stood still. What an enchanting place. I mean, I felt as if I were literally enchanted, in a kind of dream world were time had slowed to a crawl or even stopped altogether. The poem "Land of the Lotus Eaters" comes to mind, appropriately. I came THIS close to just staying there, quitting my job and not going home. I had about $4000 in traveler's checks, a fortune in early 1980s Greece, I could have lived like a prince on Crete for over a year. In the event I chickened out and used my round-trip plane ticket to go home and return to my wretched job as an advertising copywriter in Denver. Probably for the best, all things considered.

mockturtle said...

If men have all the power, women can only get power if men allow it.

Lewis, through the millennia women have exerted power through physical beauty or by force of personality and intelligence. Women have about as much power as they, themselves, desire. Most simply don't want the responsibility that comes with it.

Gahrie said...

I'm still waiting for someone to explain all the benefits to individuals and to society of this "sexual freedom and agency" (aka rampant promiscuity). Anyone care to enlighten me?

Apparently it has something to do with overturning Dred Scott and Reconstruction.......

tcrosse said...

'There’s an excess of masculine power in the world,'

Tempered by the fact that Women have monopoly control of the supply of Pussy.

walter said...

Heh..that might be a little better phrasing than "toxic masculinity".

Zach said...

Is it just me, or does all of this "power" analysis start to sound like a paranoid conspiracy theorist's idea of power?

Actually ordering someone to sleep with you or threatening repercussions if they don't is a hopelessly reductionist view of human relationships. The actual factors at play are something closer to soft power -- prestige, social position, kindness, commitment to the relationship, future prospects...

You can call all of those things power, and you won't be wrong, exactly, but why would you do it? Would Romeo and Juliet be a better depiction of a relationship if every scene talked about who had the whip hand, and what the consequences for disobedience would be? That sounds more like 50 Shades of Gray, which is nobody's idea of insightful or realistic.

Shouldn't a good theory of social interactions have *more* explanatory power than some guy in tights trying to think up rhyming couplets?