"Normal girls – more interested in abs than in labs, more interested in pecs than specs, more interested in triceps than tripos – will abjure their lecturers for the company of their peers, but nonetheless, most male lecturers know that, most years, there will be a girl in class who flashes her admiration and who asks for advice on her essays. What to do?
"Enjoy her! She's a perk.
"She doesn't yet know that you are only Casaubon to her Dorothea, Howard Kirk to her Felicity Phee, and she will flaunt you her curves. Which you should admire daily to spice up your sex, nightly, with the wife...as in Stringfellows, you should look but not touch."
Kealey has expressed his irritation that women have failed to 'get' the article, which was intended to be humorous, or semiotically playful, or both, or something:
"Because transgressional sex is inappropriate, the piece uses inappropriate and transgressional language to underscore the point - a conventional literary device. At a couple of places, the piece confounds expectations, another conventional literary device, by employing the good ol’ boy language of middle aged male collusion."
Anyway, the T.H.E editor says that it's the humourless feminists are to blame for denying Dr Kealey (with, Laura Woodhouse points out, his 45 peer-reviewed papers, 35 scientific articles and two books) his right to free speech. Of course, feminists haven't called for Kealey to have his tongue cut out of his fatuous head or, indeed, even asked for a retraction, they've merely called him out on his pathetic sexist jerkery,but even so:
"If we cannot have freedom of speech and robust debate in the academy where can we have it?"
...yep, that would be the same 'academy' which is still cutting funding from women's studies courses all over the country. Clearly some speech is freer than others.
This pile of festering bollocks has not deterred feminists across the country from taking a stand, with Feminist Fightback offering to treat Dr Kealey to a seminar on respect for women in education and the NUS leading a campaign against misogyny in higher education, with Women's Officer Olivia Bailey collecting stories of personal experience of sexism at university which will be published anonymously over the next few days (send yours to olivia.bailey[at]nus.org.uk).
But wait, there's more! Today, another male academic has been
"The idea of fertility as a medicable condition, requiring powerful drugs or even surgical interventions to prevent a woman’s body from doing exactly what it does naturally, is basically and ultimately the idea that femaleness itself is such a condition. [The institutionalised sexism of the Saudi government]is arguably as bad, but I don’t see how they are actually worse than saying that a woman’s reproductive organs cannot feel pain, as must be the case if the preborn child is simultaneously a part of those organs and unable to feel pain. In fact, if such is held to be the case, that at the physical core of her femininity a woman is insentient, then it strikes me as no wonder that there is wife-beating, with stoning not far behind.
"No one did more work than the then Cardinal Ratzinger on the Catechism of the Catholic Church, which magnificently presents the inseparability of the sanctity of life, sexual morality, social justice, and the pursuit of peace. When he comes here as Pope, let that be his theme.
"Today, condoms are practically thrown at children...and women must poison themselves in order to be available at all times for the sexual gratification of men."This, from a commentator who claims to be a liberal voice, tiptoes merrily down misogyny lane into the steaming ditch of the completely sodding bonkers, but there it is, prominently placed in a national broadsheet. A woman's pure untainted fertile reproductive system is not only the core of her personhood, it is sentient, yes, sentient of its own accord, able to independently process subjective perceptual experiences. Well, I for one can't remember the last time I had a conversation with my uterus. It strikes me that David Lindsay, who is in his own special, mad Catholic way actually trying to speak on behalf of women, may have heard of the core feminist text 'The Vagina Monologues' and made some misplaced assumptions about the content.
Oh, and also, the contraceptive pill is a horrible poison that prevents women from doing 'what comes naturally', and the Pope should make it stop, because women don't enjoy sex anyway, they only use contraceptives to satisfy male desire like the manipulative little SLUTS they are. Jesus saves!
This matters. It matters that high-profile academics and commentators, who hold the keys to learning, to advancement and to power, hold these views and see it as their god-given right to express them no matter who they hurt. It matters, because these words do hurt. They hurt more than these men, who clearly find it exceptionally difficult to understand that women are people just like them, can possibly understand. It hurts, as a person who loves books and science and learning with a bone-crunchingly hard passion, to be told that my brain is merely incidental to my body, that what my teachers and superiors, most of whom are male, obviously, are interested in are my curves, my tits and my arse and my magical sentient uterus.
And they wonder why women fail to put themselves forward for top jobs after university. They wonder why only 30% of women science graduates, compared to 95% of men, go on to do research or get jobs in their field. They ask why so many women in higher education and beyond feel like frauds in academia, in business, in the arts, in science, why women lack confidence, why we fail to put ourselves forward for promotions and pay rises. This sort of thing is fucking why. And you may like to think it's all in good fun, but I'm not laughing. I'm not laughing at all.