Teaching the history of sexuality: more men but less rape, please?

Yesterday, I read the comments on the teaching evaluation forms my students filled out last semester for the pilot course in the History of Sexuality in America class I co-taught with a colleague.  (We covered just about 1492-2011.)  The comments were overwhelmingly positive with only a few outliers.  Even people who liked the course complained that there was too much reading, but I and my co-instructor always get that on our teaching evaluations.  (Here’s an easy solution:  read through the syllabus on the first day of class, and drop the class if you don’t want to read all that!  It’s win-win for everyone that way.)

We had one suggestion–and only one–from a student who suggested that next time we might consider offering the course with one man and one woman professor, instead of two women.  Right–because our male colleagues are just lining up to teach this course, and it will be soothing and more objective if a male professor is in the room.  Continue reading

This feminist is down with Tim Tebow

Thou Shalt Not Rape

No, I haven’t renounced my longstanding ressentiment and mistrust of football at any level of play, from Pop Warner through the NFL.  It’s an appalling waste of money that pretty much sums up nearly everything that’s wrong with our culture, in universities and in the nation at large:  profligacy, the wage gap, male supremacy, obsession with inconsequential trivia, anti-intellectualism, and the abuse of women.  But, I’ve go no problem whatsoever with Tim Tebow.  I don’t care about his public religiosity (although it’s not really my style).  I’m impressed that a nice-looking, successful, and wealthy young man has taken a vow of chastity before marriage, not because I value chastity in particular, but because this is also effectively a vow not to abuse women sexually and not to rape them.

Even by comparison to most other professional or college athletes, football players have particularly poor records of abusing women, raping them, or even as we learned last year about Tebow’s teammate Perrish Cox, raping an unconscious woman, and denying it even after a DNA test of her fetus indicated that he was its father.  Continue reading