Unwanted Advances

Unwanted Advances

Sexual Paranoia Comes to Campus

eBook - 2017
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"From a highly regarded feminist, cultural critic, and professor comes a polemic arguing that the stifling sense of sexual danger sweeping American campuses doesn't empower women, it impedes the fight for gender equality. Feminism is broken, argues Laura Kipnis, if anyone thinks the sexual hysteria overtaking American campuses is a sign of gender progress. A committed feminist, Kipnis was surprised to find herself the object of a protest march by student activists at her university for writing an essay about sexual paranoia on campus. Next she was brought up on Title IX complaints for creating a "hostile environment." Defying confidentiality strictures, she wrote a whistleblowing essay about the ensuing seventy-two-day investigation, which propelled her to the center of national debates over free speech, "safe spaces," and the vast federal overreach of Title IX. In the process she uncovered an astonishing netherworld of accused professors and students, campus witch hunts, rigged investigations, and Title IX officers run amok. Drawing on interviews and internal documents, Unwanted Advances demonstrates the chilling effect of this new sexual McCarthyism on intellectual freedom. Without minimizing the seriousness of campus assault, Capons argues for more honesty about the sexual realities and ambivalences hidden behind the notion of "rape culture." Instead, regulation is replacing education, and women's hard-won right to be treated as consenting adults is being repealed by well-meaning bureaucrats. Unwanted Advances is a risk-taking, often darkly funny interrogation of feminist paternalism, the covert sexual conservatism of hook-up culture, and the institutionalized backlash of holding men alone responsible for mutually drunken sex. It's not just compulsively readable, it will change the national conversation." -- Publisher's description
Publisher: New York : Harper, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, [2017]
Copyright Date: ©2017
ISBN: 9780062657886
Branch Call Number: eBook
Characteristics: 1 online resource
text file
Additional Contributors: OverDrive, Inc

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m
mynovelesquelife
Jun 15, 2019

RATING: 3 STARS
2017; Harper/HarperCollins
(Review Not on Blog)

This is a difficult book to rate for me. Laura Kipnis does a great job in laying out her thoughts and evidence to support sexual paranoia on campuses. This is an "easy" book to read, as it is not bogged down too empirically. I think she is right to a point - that the IX may need to be looked at further, but I do not know if "paranoia" is the correct world. I think that there may be cases in college campuses were women may be calling wolf on sexual harassment against them. However, I think the majority of the cases are real. I think women are becoming braver and are actually coming forward and proceeding with cases. It is a difficult subject and I am glad that it is being discussed. Dialogues like these will be the only way we can make any changes.

***I received an eARC from EDELWEISS***

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lukasevansherman
Mar 02, 2019

"Lately I've been thinking that future generations will look back on the recent upheavals in sexual culture on American campuses and see officially sanctioned hysteria."
Laura Kipnis is a professor at Northwestern who got herself in trouble with an essay called "Sexual Paranoia Comes to Campus," which you can find online. This book is both an expansion of that essay, a polemic about the climate on campus, and personal story about her travails. Although she identifies as a feminist and a liberal, she is wading into dangerous waters and it's to her credit that she manages to find flaws in our current mores without blaming victims or suggesting that sexual assault isn't a problem. However, If you do question anything, you risk of being lumped with conservatives, the anti-PC gang, and the current secretary of education. Her worry, like a lot of free speech is advocate, is that dissenting views and opinions are being shut out and small mistakes can be magnified into career ending blow ups. For further study, Jon Krakauer's "Missoula" and the documentary "The Hunting Ground."
New Yorker article on Kipnis:
https://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/laura-kipniss-endless-trial-by-title-ix

spl_merley Feb 08, 2018

Kipnis dives into the murky and danger filled waters of feminism, sexuality and University administrative reach with her deft voice, brutal wit and a certain amount of fearlessness. She weaves together the story of several hearings under Title IX investigations of sexual misconduct to raise questions about the systems, frames and controls that are shaping conversations about sex and the expanding definition of sexual assault on campuses in the US. While very readable this is a challenging read because Kipnis demands that we not give into easy answers but rather grapple with how equality, responsibility and regret intersect with power and politics and justice.

b
Bookafterbook
Aug 12, 2017

A well intentioned effort lacking in plausibility. A personal view of college life from a tenured professor, and self-confessed student seducer. Not convincing and not serious enough to sway.

s
seastory
May 26, 2017

The notion that women cannot stand up for themselves and must be shielded from harm would, of course, have been commonplace in the 19th century. It's surprising to see it revived today, and used to justify a reign of terror in universities. Laura Kipnis has written an important book and, despite being a university professor, she has made it accessible to all; her tone is almost conversational.

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spl_merley Feb 08, 2018

spl_merley thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over

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