I Was A Women’s Studies Minor Until My Professor Called Me Anti-Feminist

anti-feminist I was halfway through my college career when I decided I needed a minor to go with my English major. It wasn’t a requirement, but since I had been so inundated in literature and creative writing classes, I was ready for something else.

I had considered Art History, but after two classes, I realized my ability to remember anything outside of the most well-known artists throughout history was difficult. I can blame my excessive marijuana use for that. Next, I thought I’d try my hand at studio art as a minor, but when I realized that I didn’t have the ability to create the next David, I threw out that idea, too.

Finally, I decided to go with Women’s Studies. As a writer, I knew it would coincide nicely with my English major, it was definitely something in which I was interested, and I had heard great things about the professors in the department. So, that’s what I went with, and I was stoked.

I was a few classes into what I hoped to eventually declare as my minor, when I hit not just a bump in the road, but full-on roadblock.

For some reason, I was able to get into a few upper level Women’s Studies classes without having to take the introductory pre-requisite. But once the glitch was realized, I was forced to take the 101 course before I could proceed with what I hoped to be my minor. I was annoyed, but “rules is rules,” as they say, and I found myself in an entry-level class.

From the start, the professor didn’t seem to care for me. I wasn’t sure what I had done, but when I contributed to the conversation – which I did less and less thanks to her attitude – she would shoot down whatever I said. I could have told the class the sky was blue, but because it was I who said it, she would have argued that it was another color entirely. I was disenchanted to say the least.

So, when she told me toward the end of the semester that I was anti-feminist, I shouldn’t have been too surprised.

It was after I had submitted my final paper that the professor called me to her office. I didn’t find this to be strange, because as an English major we were constantly having one-on-one meetings with our professors. She asked me to sit down and proceeded to tell me how awful my final paper was.

We were given free-reign to choose our topic, and I had decided to tackle the fact that sometimes women accuse men of sexual harassment as a means of revenge, or to get what they want. I cited specific cases, one of which that hit home with me where a beloved teacher at my high school had been accused of coming on to two female students, only to have the two students take back their accusations and admit that they were angry for the grade that he had given them.

However, I was wrong — as she told me. My paper, according to the professor, was radical, uneducated, offensive, full of proof that women are never taken seriously and are often coerced into retracting their claims of harassment and abuse. And for me to think for one moment that a woman would ever lie about such a thing made me anti-feminist. Also, I should “be ashamed of myself.”

What the fucking fuck?

At the time I was angry, and too stunned to respond as eloquently as I would have liked. I was a sheltered 21-year-old attending an equally sheltered university in New Hampshire, and although I knew that my paper had proved my point, I lacked the backbone that I have now to stand up for myself. Instead, I cried right then and there, shoved my D- paper in my bag and ran to the bathroom to cry some more. I never took a Women’s Studies class again.

What happened in the professor’s office that day always bothered me. Admittedly, I do hang on to things longer than I should and, yes, I let things affect me deeper than what would be deemed reasonably sane, but this particular moment in my college career has yet to stop upsetting me when I think about it.

Now, a decade later, I can finally put into words what I would have loved to have said to that professor all those years ago: I was not wrong; she was wrong.

I believe that in being a feminist you need to accept that the female gender is not perfect – nor is the male gender, for that matter. Actually, and this may be shocking to some of you, human beings are not perfect.

People lie, people hate, people take advantage of situations, other people and even the kindness of those around them. People are conniving, manipulative and downright awful! Human beings are capable of some fucking horrific acts, and just five minutes with your eyes glued to CNN will prove this to be fact.

Of course, this doesn’t hold true for every human being, or even for the majority, but it does exist. Both men and women can be deceitful jerks, you guys. And if we’re just to assume that whenever a case arises that the woman in the scenario is completely and totally innocent every single time, we’re not only insulting our gender and our species, but feminism, too. To think that women are exempt from lying and corruption is not only ignorant, but practically anti-feminist in itself because it’s such a disservice to the cause. If we don’t accept that our gender is capable of lies and fuck-ups, and we believe that’s only the shit that men do, then we’re so wrong; we should be ashamed of ourselves.

I’m not sure if that Women’s Studies professor is still at the University of New Hampshire, or if I was the only one to be labeled anti-feminist by her, but I like to hope that since then she’s broadened her thinking. I understand that she’s teaching at a state university in a podunk town, but although that may be the case, she should at least take into account that most of us will leave the sanctity of UNH behind, and to not prepare us for the real world outside the safe walls of academia is irresponsible on her part.

I know I’m not anti-feminist. It may have taken me a long time to get to the point where I can call myself a feminist, but I’m here now. And with 10+ years of life experience since college graduation, I can say with confidence, that maybe Professor [name redacted] is the one who needs to re-evaluate her own inner feminist.

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    • Anon

      If you quit women’s studies because of one teacher, you should reexamine your drive to complete the curriculum in the first place. Some professors are difficult. Let me help you look at it another way: maybe your views ARE anti-feminist and some of your opinions are flawed or wrongly informed. Maybe your other professors were non-confrontational or didn’t want to tackle your statements in class even though they were wrong (some professors are nervous or lazy). Maybe this specific professor was trying to challenge you and teach you something. You can’t assume she specifically decided to “hate” you for no reason. And frankly, your final paper does sound like shit. It really strikes me that you were NOT the victim in this situation.

      • Amanda Chatel

        Oh, Anon, you sound like a real class act!
        I never once said that she hated me. I need more people in my life who can’t read. Can we be friends?

      • Lizzie

        Right. Because she obviously was your best friend : “From the start, the professor didn’t seem to care for me. I wasn’t sure what I had done, but when I contributed to the conversation, she would shoot down whatever I said.”

      • Amanda Chatel

        Of course we were BFF! That’s how my best friends and I act — you don’t?

      • Kim

        Wait, it’s been 10+ years since this issue, meaning you’re in your 30′s now and still acting/thinking like this? That’s kind of embarrassing since you have the emotional maturity of a high schooler and you obviously didn’t learn anything in college or life after that. Good job derailing/ignoring the OP’s very valid points about what was problematic about your article based on semantics and the fact that they’re anon simply because you didn’t like them. It sounds eerily similar to the time when you ignored a certain professors criticism and chose to focus on some imaginative idea that they had it out for you from the beginning (lol). You pretty clearly have difficulties accepting criticism, which will only hurt you in the long run, and apparently it already has since you seem so emotionally stunted. Grow the fuck up sweetheart.

      • ElleJai

        It’s comments like this on articles like this that make me not want to be a feminist. Why bother when we’re just going to oppress each other anyway?

        Polite discussion is just that, POLITE. Not swearing and patronising. PATRONISING. Which is already anti feminist IMO.

      • http://www.groverbeachbum.blogspot.com/ Neil

        Hilarious….anon here proves the rule. Never go against the mythology of the sisterhood. For merely acknowledging reality, you are obviously “wrongly-informed” (meaning, not willing to accept BS mythology as fact), and your factual paper can be labeled “shit” without needing to be read.

        Feminists would be f’ing hilarious, if they weren’t so “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” sad.

    • Tania

      I like how you state the clearly-not-anti-feminist topic of your paper and are still told that you were probably being anti-feminist anyway by Anon down there.

      • Me

        Her topic wasn’t anti-feminist per se, but it wasn’t feminist. Feminists spend a lot of time trying very hard to combat rape culture and people coming along and saying that rape “accusers” often falsely accuse, delegitimizes actual rape victims, who OFTEN are told that they’re falsely accusing their attackers. Unknowingly, college-Amanda was spouting opinions that form the basis of many angry and violent MRA groups.

      • http://www.facebook.com/sameurysm Samantha Escobar

        While I know what you mean (women getting called false accusers constantly) one of the most important things, to me, is to acknowledge the bad things people DO do because otherwise, the other side can say, “Here’s an example of false accusations that feminists refuse to acknowledge.” As long as she never said that this was remotely the norm — which she did not — then I don’t think it’s any different than just examining any other issue of female/male dynamics regarding crimes, accusations and falsehood.

      • sdrake
      • Kim

        Women lie about rape at the same rate that people lie about other crimes, but you NEVER see any articles or studies on those do you? The agenda is obvious.

      • sdrake

        If you NEVER see any articles or studies on people lying about other crimes, how do you know women lie about rape at the same rate that people lie about other crimes? LOL!!

      • Kim

        From these crazy things called statistics ;) LOL indeed.

      • sdrake

        You assert that there are no studies on people lying about other crimes. Then you say people lie about other crimes at the same rate as women lying about rape. How can you say the rate is the same if there are no studies showing the rates of people lying about other crimes? Where are your statistics?

      • Kim

        Are you stupid? It’s called hyperbole sweetheart, and if you think people bring up false accusations in relation to every other crime at the same rate that they do rape, then you’re completely clueless and clearly not any type of a feminist, so why are you here anyways?

      • sdrake

        So first it’s statistics and now it’s hyperbole. LOL! You claimed the rate is the same for women who falsely accuse men of rape as it is for people who lie for other crimes. But then you said there are no studies or articles on people lying for other crimes. Well, statistics are based on studies. So how can there be statistics if there aren’t studies first?

        In other words, you’re only guessing that the rates are the same for both, since you have no statistics to back it up, in spite of the fact that you say the statistics exist.

        There are reasons false rape accusations are especially high, much more than for other crimes, “sweetheart.”

        Spare me the feminoid logic and support your statements with proof. If you can’t put up, then shut up.

      • Kim

        It was always statistics AND hyperbole dumbass, sorry if you’re too brain dead to detect it. For someone so obsessed with others backing up their opinions with statistics, why don’t you post some real ones to begin with. Because one of your links doesn’t work, one leads to a BLOGGER.com account with only one post, and that one and the 3rd one are a bunch of Men’s Rights Activism bs (should’ve known lol!). Like, I’m sorry if you’re weak minded enough to foll in line with that kind of crap, but don’t think you can come play with big boys/girls with a bunch of fake statistics to reinforce the delusion that men are some oppressed minority, who apparently oppressed themselves since men create and preserve all the laws in this country lmao.

      • 872now

        You can dodge the issue all you want with your juvenile name-calling but you still haven’t provided me with any proof that the rates are the same for both. Sorry if one of my links didn’t work but this one, http://www.mediaradar.org/rese… is not fake statistics, regardless of how much in denial you want to be in about the truth.

        Your blather is meaningless until you can back up your statement about equal rates. But my guess is you’ll continue with your childish behavior, “big girl,” since you have no documentation to support your claim. LOL!!!

      • sdrake

        You can try to dodge the issue all you want with your juvenile name-calling but you still have not provided the statistics you claim you have nor any proof whatsoever that the rates are the same for both.

        Sorry if my one of my links didn’t work but this one http://www.mediaradar.org/rese… is not “fake statistics,” regardless of how much you don’t like the fact that it contradicts feminist lies.

        My guess is you have absolutely nothing to back up your wild claim and will continue to deal with it by using ad hominems to try to divert my attention away from the fact that you have nothing but childish blather, “big girl.” I’m sure your next response will be just as meaningless as all your others… no proof, no statistics, no documentation… just more hissy fits.

      • Kim

        Lmao, that link doesn’t work either, but I already visited the link you posted from media radar and it has MRA scribbled all over it and those are false statistics used to back up a misogynistic agenda. Sorry to shatter your world. Now show me some stats that come from an actual CREDIBLE SOURCE like Rainn (look it up) and maybe I’ll give you the time of day. Or do you honestly believe that anything scribbled on the internet is true? Seems like it and I feel sorry for you, boo :)

      • sdrake

        Media Radar is NOT an MRA website. You only think it is because it’s probably the first website you’ve ever seen that is balanced for both men and women. To femi-narcissists, any publication that isn’t entirely geared toward women is an MRA sight. Sigh… “R.A.D.A.R. – Respecting Accuracy in Domestic Abuse Reporting – is a non-profit, non-partisan organization of men and women working to improve the effectiveness of our nation’s approach to solving domestic violence.”

        Further, if you bothered to read it as I have, you will find all kinds of information for women about domestic violence shelters and many other articles geared toward women. Much of the information about false rape accusations comes from law enforcement agencies and are not fake. Sorry to disappoint you but your refusal to acknowledge the truth is no argument against the fact that it is.

        Even if the actual rate of false rape accusations were say, 5% rather than 50%, (which is simply not the case) you still have no statistics to prove that the rates are the same as those for other crimes, which is the issue here. I’m not impressed with your feeble and repeated attempts to divert me from the real issue, which is your refusal to admit you don’t have the statistics you claim. This makes you a liar. Say it with me- L-I-A-R.

        “…and maybe I’ll give you the time of day…”

        Well aren’t I just so privileged to be conversing with a feminazi and a liar who just might give me the time of day if I behave like a good little boy!

        Lady, you have no statistics showing the rates are the same or you would have posted them by now.

        I see right through your game. You’ve been caught with your pants down and your lame attempt to push it off on me ain’t working. You’re a fraud and I’m not going to waste any more time indulging your fragile ego. Ta-ta.

        P.S. Undoubtedly, you will want the last word without the statistics you promised you have but cannot provide. So without reading your final post, I’ll simply not read it, print it out and use it as toilet paper, which is all it’s going to be worth. Have a good day.

      • Kim
      • http://www.groverbeachbum.blogspot.com/ Neil

        RAINN a credible source? A source for feminist mythology and cooked stats, yes.

      • Kim

        Have fun in jail when u get falsely accused bb. Dont drop the soap ;)

      • Pilgrimette

        You just embarrassed the shit out of yourself. “I believe X because of stats. Oh, I dont have have any stats? well then, I believe X because of *just so* socially constructed narrative. Then I’ll say it’s hyperbole and smugly disregard you in order to save face.”

      • Amanda Chatel

        Yeah, like what’s up with these trolls?! WHERE DO THEY COME FROM?!

      • ZanBrody

        I have no idea why people are hyperfocusing on small details vs. the overall theme, but I personally enjoyed this article. I guess like identifying “correct” feminism, it is subjective.

      • Breezy

        Girl it has been really hateful and trolly up in here lately.

      • Amanda Chatel

        Tell me about it… and not just on this post, but others, too. It’s scary!

      • Kim

        Lol, God forbid anyone disagree with you like EVER.

    • http://poorgoop.com/ Samantha

      As always, wonderful essay, Amanda. Your willingness to be honest about your experiences in finding feminism are some of my favorite things to read.

      I encountered a really similar problem in my first college women’s studies class. I grew up in a pretty conservative environment (an Evangelical Free church), and I had only just “discovered” feminism. My professor, instead of trying to open up discussions, would often mock my questions in class, in a way that fed into a lot of feminist stereotypes I’d grown up with. Having dealt with shitty leaders before (thank you, Evangelical church environment), I felt comfortable calling her out on it. Academic feminism, if you can call it that, is super intimidating, and I feel like they always put the toughest professors in the 101 classes.

      • Amanda Chatel

        Thank you! I’m glad you understood what I was saying… can’t say the same for the rest of the trolls up there. <3

      • April

        Ugh, because if anyone disagrees with you ever, they are clearly just a troll.

      • Amanda Chatel

        No.
        If anyone reads a post and inferes what isn’t there — like “Anon” who thinks I said the professor “hated” me, or like “Nona” who clearly doesn’t read this site on a regular basis and just wanted spout off, that’s trolling.

        Disagreements don’t warrant someone being called a troll. Ugh.

      • April

        I do think Nona’s took it too far. But Anon getting the impression that your professor hated you is not completely out of nowhere. While you never used the word hate, you talked about how she constantly shot you down, never seemed to care for you, and would have argued with you if you had said the sky was blue just because it was you who said it. To me, that passage seems like an eloquent way of saying that she really, really just didn’t like you from the start. Another word for really, really not liking someone is hate. Look at this comment board, and half the comments are you just being snarky at people who are bringing up their own view on your essay. Nobody here is threatening you or cursing at you. Nobody is saying something just to be inflammatory. They are reacting to what you wrote, which is what happens on blogs. Some people didn’t like your essay. Its ok, a lot of other people did. There’s just no need to instantly start attacking commenters on your own article because they think you wrote a bad paper in college once.

      • Amanda Chatel

        You’re totally right, April! I absolutely agree with you.

        However, Anon, Me and Nona are the same person… I’m just responding to someone who has changed their name three times to attack the essay I wrote three times. Opinions are awesome, but like come on… you have to admit that behavior is a bit a troll-like.

      • April

        Well, for all your snarkiness , apparently I was right since you’ve edited the troll line out of your original comment…

      • Kim

        That’s not the definition of a troll either, and how convenient that the only one who you called a troll is the one who disagreed with you.

    • LJ

      Maybe your professor was battle-scarred from having to deal with
      students who want to break them down, and instead of seeing you as a
      budding feminist grappling with new issues and trying to articulate
      them, they might have seen you as an antagonist. As an ex-WS instructor,
      I often had students in my classes who were only there for the credit
      and had little respect for the scholarship, and maybe it was a case of
      mistaken identity.

      • Just NO

        Sorry, college isn’t just some activist playground. People don’t go to college to become feminists. Most people go to college to gain skill in an actual field. Women’s studies seems less like a academic field and more like religious dogma. If a woman’s studies professor expects everyone in her class to leave a “feminist”, she’s not an educator, she’s a tyrant.

    • Nona

      This is a fashion and beauty site, not tumblr. It really seems petty and irresponsible of you to write a self-involved essay about one teacher who did you wrong many years ago. Get over it and start writing posts about things that actually matter to the rest of us who come here for snarky pop culture coverage. Your blogspot would be a better place for this garbage.

      • Amanda Chatel

        If you haven’t noticed, this website covers feminist topics on a daily basis… but if you think that “things that actually matter” are strictly “pop culture coverage,” then maybe this site isn’t a very good fit for you. TMZ might be more up your alley.
        Cheers!

      • AnotherSimpleMan

        Why are you allowed to post here, antifeminist – ANTIFEMINIST!!!!????

      • http://twitter.com/Tobi_Is_Fab Nerdy Lucy

        Why are you so whiny today?

      • kj

        ……..Petty and irresponsible?! Really? Really? REALLY?! OH GOD NO CHATEL YOU ARE KILLING MY GOSSIP BUZZ with your serious discussion of college/feminist politics AARGH.

      • Amanda Chatel

        I know, kj, I know. I’M SORRY I RUINED YOUR WHOLE WEEKEND WITH “THIS GARBAGE.” I’m the worst.

    • Zoe

      Your professor should have dealt with the issue better. While the point you make about women being flawed humans is true and important to recognize, I do think that you missed the point of womens studies in academia with your paper. Recognizing that false accusations happen is certainly not anti-feminist, however womens studies exists to theorize and understand the systematic oppression of women, not to list cases where women gamed the system to victimize men. Again, there is no issue with noting that false accusations happen, but its not final paper for womens studies 101 material. If you had looked at the overall issue of how rape is prosecuted and used false accusations within a larger framework, no problem. If you’re whole paper was just listing examples, then that’s a bad paper. I would guess that your professor took it as you entirely dismissing the way the legal system hinders actual victims from achieving justice, and therefore a sharp rejection of the class in general. Womens studies is an academic subject, not just feminist time at school, and as such for papers in that class you should focus on the topics and ideas within that subject.

      • fionarocks

        Hey Amanda, maybe if you posted the paper we’d have a little more
        context in this. I understand where you’re coming from but also see
        Zoe’s point. I’ve enjoyed your work on thegloss for a few years now and you have a pretty clear feminist voice…maybe posting it would help continue the discussion.

      • Amanda Chatel

        Oh, that paper is long gone! I’ve been out of college since 2001! Otherwise, I’d totally post it.

      • fionarocks

        Oh well:(

      • Amanda Chatel

        But I can assure you I didn’t just list out examples. However, I didn’t look into how rape is prosecuted, as Zoe suggested would contribute to a good paper, because it wasn’t about false accusations of rape, but about false accusations of sexual harassment. So with that in mind, I did exam the legality of it all, the effects that such actions have on the legal system and future cases, as well as the sad reality that comes when someone cries wolf, but then is forced at some point in their life to endure such a violation.

        So that’s the short version, darling!

      • fionarocks

        I didn’t think you would, I’m sure you did your research and am sorry she was so difficult.

      • Amanda Chatel

        <3

      • Kim

        It sounds like you only looked at the legality of it from the perspective of how the false accuser would hurt the legal system, and not the bigger FRAMEWORK that Zoe pointed out, about how the legal system works against victims. Your paper might not have been about rape but her point still applies; let’s not play dumb here and act like SH and DV victims are treated any better than SA victims — they face the same kind of victim blaming and doubt. If your paper didn’t acknowledge rape culture and how that plays out in a court room, which it sounds like it didn’t, then your professor was absolutely right for dismissing your essay. But I’m sure we’re both “trolls” for telling you a truth you didn’t want to hear.

      • feminists exploit rape victims

        As a stranger rape survivor, I hate that feminists write cute little papers about rape so they can get cookies from their feminist professors. To these arrogant and self-absorbed feminist academics rape isn’t a personal tragedy or violent crime that effects people’s lives forever, it’s a just another “feminist topic” for discussion. News flash: Not all rape victims are feminists and some rape victims are anti-feminists. Some of them are elderly or (gasp!) Republican or some other person that doesn’t spend all it’s time kissing the ass of the left.

        I sometimes think feminists just have their heads shoved so far up their own asses that they can’t see how offensive it is. Fuck feminism and women’s studies. Real rape victims don’t owe you snobby academic bitches anything. If you write about rape, I hope you have been raped. If not you are just another snot nosed bitch getting academic cookies by exploiting people’s personal tragedies so you can get a good grade.

        Women’s Studies should be defunded. Rape victims don’t owe academic feminists anything but scorn.

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      • fionarocks

        No, thanks.

      • Tusconian

        I have to agree. While I would like this attitude of “women never do anything wrong because of feminism, and you are BAD if you disagree with the prescribed doctrine for any reason” I don’t think that paper sounds like the most appropriate vessel in the most appropriate setting. Especially since one of the cases was a second hand account regarding a person the author cared for personally. That doesn’t only bring up the issues faced by other examples (women being coerced into saying they were lying, general lack of firsthand knowledge) but also just isn’t the same as researching a topic, and should result in a reduced grade. “Why A Select Few Women Suck, As Told By Me” with personal experience as a reference in a Women’s Studies class sounds either clueless or like an active attempt to be controversial.

        I’m curious about the previous incidents though.

      • Just NO

        I find it funny that without seeing the paper, you sycophants assume it was the author’s fault. Typical feminists – completely unable to stand criticism of any sort. No, no it must ALWAYS be the fault of someone else, never the sainted feminist

        It’s immature and embarrassing. The best thing feminism can do for itself is start taking responsibility for the bad behavior of self-identified feminists. The professor was in the wrong because she allowed political ideology to color her viewpoint and she punished the student for her own emotional reaction to her paper.

        I’m an educated woman, but the more I read about women’s studies the more it seems like a hotbed of emotionally charged, intellectually shallow posturing. Glad I stuck to respected disciplines rather than getting a degree in “perpetual feminine victimhood”.

      • OhOk

        Exactly what Zoe said. She didn’t need to call you names, but you didn’t do the assignment. False accusations are an interesting topic in criminal or employment law classes, but not so much women’s studies because it’s really an examination of liars and opportunists that you happened to have put in a gendered context. The narrow focus on sexual harassment probably got under your professor’s skin because people are constantly claiming women lie about or imagine these violations when the fact is that these instances are the minority. In addition, it sounds like anecdotal evidence was your main source of material. Anecdotes are great for English majors, but not social scientists.

      • Hilary

        Yes, Amanda. You said something that was slightly negative towards women, so you “didn’t do the assignment”.

        FFS.

        And so the lies and whitewashing continues.

    • Sami Jankins

      I have strong opinions on professors using their bias in grading papers. If the paper is well written, has facts that can be backed up, and effort was put in… you have to grade it as such. A D- is a grade given to people who didn’t care. That’s what is given to students who submit next to nothing. The professor clearly just didn’t want you to pass which I find inexcusable in academia (at that age especially, it can derail someone’s entire career goals).

      • Tusconian

        One of her examples was a personal anecdote, which in a class like that, is typically unacceptable. Honestly, even if her paper was otherwise 100% perfect, lacking scholarly sources to back up your argument is how to get a C…..at most. I know some professors who wouldn’t even grade it. Combined with the fact that it is a really inappropriate topic for a women’s studies class, Amanda is actually quite lucky, IMO, that she didn’t completely fail.

    • http://www.facebook.com/Sunshine.Paradis Danielle Paradis

      LOVE IT. I think we need to acknowledge that false accusations happen, and why. Because sometimes they happen due to a society that teaches women sex is wrong, and so they ‘cry rape’ because they are afraid from being caught by their parents. Also, some women are controlling.

      I never want false rape charges to be the entirety of the conversation, but realistically they need to be a part of it. We can’t live with our head in the sand. I never get over anything so I feel you on the old grudges ;)

      • Psych Student

        I agree with you! The sex negativity women get all the time is determental to them. When women are told that they shouldn’t have sexual desires, it encourages them to lie about having them. If we look deeper into why false accusations happen and how we can work to reduce the cause of them and make progress rather than just closing our eyes and pretending they don’t exsist.

    • Maria

      Hey Amanda, I really would have liked to read that paper. I don’t think that topic is anti-feminist, in fact I think it’s very important to address this problem AS A FEMINIST. Most of my male professors seem to feel the need to distance themselves from female students in order to prevent situations and accusations like this. It’s still mostly men who are allowed to really bond with their teachers and thus have a much easier way into the academic world. If a male student seeks a conversation with a male teacher outside of the classroom, he’s dedicated and studious, a female student is perceived as a threat.

    • I beg to differ

      To say that sometimes women lie about sexual harassment is like trying to beat a rotting horse corpse. To go further and say it’s something that not enough people talk about or something feminists refuse to admit really does warrant a D-. People are not only aware of the harlots, jezebels and temptresses that cry wolf, (sarcasm), that’s often their first thought when they hear of a sexual harassment case.

      Most feminists know that, which is why don’t sit around writing about the minuscule percentage that lies about harassment or rape. That doesn’t make them ignorant or implicit in a global cover-up. They’re just not perpetuating a very harmful, very rampant stereotype, which you are. I can see why someone would call that anti-feminist. Instead, most feminists spend their energy trying to get people to talk about “legitimate rape” or “legitimate harassment.” /sarcasm

      The fact that you’re freaking out and calling everyone disagreeing with you a troll is really weird and indicates refusal to self-reflect.

    • http://twitter.com/PortraitOfMmeX Madame X

      I am not saying the prof handled the situation well, but I can’t say I am inclined to side with you, here. If what you got out of that was that feminists need to admit women aren’t perfect, you didn’t learn very much and I’m not sure you have a very useful idea of what feminism means.

    • S.

      You wrote a paper about women who lie about rape for a women’s studies class and then got upset that your professor didn’t care for it? Your paper seems like a puerile attempt at getting a rise out of your professor. Which is exactly what you got.

      It would be the same as someone writing a paper on how sometimes during the colonial period of some commonwealth country the colonized people exaggerated the racism and persecution they suffered. Might be true in a few cases, but it is so far outweighed by the suffering experienced by the majority of people that it seems almost racist to bring it up.

      I’m surprised your prof gave you a D-. She ought to have given you an F. Or an F-. If there is such a thing.

      • AnotherSimpleMan

        Yes, what use is oldspeak in a Women’s Studies course? His paper had no bellyfeel, no newspeak. It was malquoted crimethink on paper.

        Time for joycamp for you!

    • Evenaar

      Some commenters seem to think it’s their job to analyse if the actual, 10-year-old paper was up to the assignment or not. I think that’s not the point here, as some have pointed out, a teachers’ job is to educate. If you are teaching a 101 class in particular, you should be ok with some people having different or not-fully-formed ideas about your topic, in fact, this is something to be welcomed, as it is exactly where your job comes in. Who cares if the paper was feminist or anti-feminist? What’s important is that if you have taken it on to teach a new generation about feminism, you don’t dismiss critical thinking, you help improve it instead.

      • Amanda Chatel

        Thank you.
        I had so much learning to do at that point in my life. I’m not saying my paper was perfect or even remotely great. The purpose of this essay was to point out how the situation was handled and how it affected the budding feminist in me. I was 19 years old at the time — what the hell did I know about life at 19? (Of course, I thought I knew everything then.)

        This essay was meant to be about her reaction, not whether or not I deserved the grade, whether or not I strayed from the topic (which was an open one and the same topic was tackled by other students), or even a grudge of sorts. I’m starting to realize that I either didn’t convey the intended focus of the piece as accurately as I should have, or some commenters are just stoked to tell me how they’d grade me if they had the power to do so.

        Now back to this Law & Order marathon…

    • Elizabeth

      while i don’t know how you wrote your essay, i can say that this is absolutely a valid topic. There is certainly a cultural perception that sexual harassment victims are all liars and attention seekers, so shouldn’t we examine why women do lie? and who are these women? calling them out for giving other victims a bad name doesn’t seem anti-feminist to me in the slightest. I’ve never taken WS course, but it seems to me like that would actually be a pretty important conversation to have!
      anyways, great article, and great topic

    • AnotherSimpleMan

      Hahahaha! You thought feminists were about fairness and reality – feminism is about ideology and dogma. Woa – what a surprise….0__o …NOT!

    • Kerry Hitch

      as Allen answered I am amazed that a mℴm can prℴfit $4564 in a few weeks ℴn the cℴmputer. did you see this web page …………. Rich6.ℂom

    • sdrake

      Nothing wrong with being an anti-feminist and more and more women are waking up to the realities of the feminist agenda, as their sons, brothers, nephews and male friends become victimized by anti-male legislation such as VAWA.

      Feminism is about maximizing self-interest rather than advocating fairness and justice. Feminists do not want equality and whilst they will not dare admit it in public, it is plainly clear that they want gender supremacy and hide behind a false banner of egalitarianism when it suits them. They manipulate, deceive and distort people’s perceptions for their own twisted sense of entitlement.

      By failing to recognize and support action to address men’s problems, they are partly responsible for perpetuating those problems and also their eventual devastating consequences.

    • Marissa

      Some people say I can’t be a feminist just because I’m pro-life..

    • Kim

      How is what she said wrong or ignorant in any way? There are actual statistics to back up what that the OP is saying, and your essay was only based on anecdata. You accused someone else of not being able to read above, but yet you seem to think the OP insinuated that no women lie about sexual harassment ever…which they didn’t. Yes, it happens, but it’s rare and it happens at the same rate that people lie about other crimes…but did you write an essay about that? Nope, and no one ever does, because we live in a rape culture and your essay and way of thinking are part of that system.

    • Kim

      I completely agree with your professor; that is not an appropriate subject for a women’s study class, not to mention it sounds like it was full of anecdotal evidence, and it’s a shame you haven’t figured that out by now especially since you’re in your 30′s and had plenty of time to actually study feminist theory. Because I can somewhat excuse a young, naive, and not terribly bright 21 year old for that kind of backwards thinking, there’s no excuse for a grown woman who’s college educated to still hold that mindset. You still seem awfully oversensitive and emotionally stunted since you have a difficulty accepting criticism and acknowledging when you’re wrong.

      • JLH1986

        From what I gathered the point of her article wasn’t “I was given an unfair grade in college”. It was that the point of feminism is to LIFT women up, to embrace women as is and not make them conform to society’s sense of propriety. Whether or not the paper was or wasn’t appropriate the professor did NONE of those things, and if you’re preaching feminism then that’s your job. If the writer’s paper was totally and incomprehensibly off topic, then the professor should have said I’m not sure I made the assignment clear. Or mentioned respectfully that her paper was off the mark. The professor could have asked her to verbalize a more clear understanding of the paper and then explained why the paper fell short. And ok, so 10+ years later it still impacts her, because it shaped her thoughts going forward. Maybe some girl in high school called you names and you still feel it today. People feel what they feel. To be honest if a professor had spoken to me that way I’d probably still be hurt by it today, the simple lack of professionalism from the professor would be enough for me to remember. We ALL have that first tear of rough criticism, where someone is so over the top critical (whether or not we were in the right isn’t relevant) that it sticks with us. This sounds like this was hers. Time to change your cranky pants.

      • Kim

        Lol. Here’s the thing, there are a lot of different points made in this article and the authors comments and my post isn’t solely addressing the overarching theme of the article, although I think that’s a bunch of BS to try and make her feel better about what she did wrong. The authors comments not just in the article but in the comments section where people questioned her about her essay make it clear that she still doesn’t get what she did wrong. And at the end of the day, if the author realized this, do you think she would’ve written this article? Nope, probably not. At least if she had and acknowledged that she was wrong from the get go, I wouldn’t have taken such an issue with it.

        As for the professors critique being “unprofessional”, that’s a matter of opinion. Just because she let it get under her skin doesn’t autmoatically make it unprofessional, because it certainly wasn’t a personal attack. The professor was truthful, honest, and right. The author was 21, not 12; 21 is an ADULT and more than old enough to know the basics of feminist theory.

        If feminism is about “lifting each other up”, why is the author taking pride in the fact that the professor now works in a “podunk town”? That sounds way more mean spirited than anything the professor said to her.

        Also there’s a HUGE difference between bullying and constructive criticism from a professor. Have you ever even been to college? It doesn’t sound like it. One day when you graduate HS and go maybe this will all start to make some sense to you.

        “Time to change your cranky pants.”

        Ah, this childish remark makes it clear why you would side with someone as petty as the author of this article lmao, carry on :)

    • FayFay

      lovely article. i took a quiz at school that would tell me where i was on a continuum of feminism, and i got “hostile misogynist.” Well. I’m not. There you go.

    • Ryan

      This whole comment thread is full of perfect examples of the subject of your paper, Amanda; women do not lie, ever, and if you so much as insinuate otherwise then you are a woman-hating anti-feminist pig (if male) or a self-hating traitor (if female).

      You can’t counter one extreme (“all women are liars and teases”) with another extreme (“women never lie and can do no wrong”) and hope to get anywhere. You have to acknowledge the entire truth of the situation; do rape and sexual harassment happen? Yes, all the time, and something must be done about it. But false accusations are also real.

      It sounds like the professor from this story had that kind of kneejerk, reactionary, absolutely contrarian attitude that is so sickening and harmful to any and all “causes;” you’ve already decided your position and no one’s going to get through to you no matter what.

    • http://www.fewmets.org/ unclesmrgol

      If you want to do everyone a big favor, name the professor and the college.

      • http://www.fewmets.org/ unclesmrgol

        University of New Hampshire. Google “University of New Hampshire Women’s Studies” to get the short list of suspects.

    • kaimcn

      It sounds like you weren’t actually a Women’s Studies minor scared off by an angry feminist. From your post you hadn’t declared the minor when you took the class? The headline is misleading. We can’t read the paper (nor do we need to!) but it sounds like a professor who maybe had issues with you gave you a fair grade on a paper that missed the mark in the course and so you gave up on women’s studies. That’s ok, I don’t think you need to study it to be a feminist or to help women.

      From your description of the paper it sounds like you didn’t learn much in the class. I say that because instead of looking at the larger culture that contributes to sexual harassment and assault you used your experience write a position siding with the people who have the most power, men in literal positions of power over women. This is what society teaches us every day; my understanding of women’s studies is that it’s to challenge and unlearn those lessons. Your professor would want you to demonstrate that you learned how to challenge male privilege and your paper failed to do that.

      2% of sexual assault accusations are false according to the FBI. It
      sounds like your paper pounced on that 2% (or sexual harassment
      equivalent) to prove women are liars. Do some women lie? Absolutely! But
      not as many as are assaulted or harassed and don’t report it (as you
      and I know).

      As for her treatment of you in class, it sounds unfair. Some profs are unfair in their treatment of students. It sucks and usually our only option is to avoid that prof while we study. (Almost like a women harassed at work who has to avoid her harasser in the halls. Power exchanges can suck.) But if your questions in class were as “devil’s advocate” as your final paper I can understand why she may have been frustrated with them. Consider the prof whose passion is women’s studies who every semester faces students who want to challenge what she knows/believes to be true with “well women are lying sluts sometimes”. It happens and often. Should she start every semester fresh to face that abuse? Maybe, but shouldn’t she also trust her experience?

      From your description, you clashed with a prof in a 101 class, got a mark that seems fair for the class and decided not to pursue the subject. You’re still a feminist but you’re also hurting over a bad mark over 10 years ago. I’m not sure an article painting you as a victim of an angry feminist is helpful to anyone, it just reinforces another anti-woman stereotype. I hope the discussion in the comments (some of which has been hurtful and divisive and I mean that from all sides) is more helpful.