Pleasuring Yourself

first_imgMIRANDA KAUFMANN finds out more about our oldest and most controversial habitAnn Summers has become a high street store, a similar outlet in America called Good Vibrations sponsors National Masturbation month, and the act is central to the plot of films such as the American Pie trilogy and episodes of Sex and the City. We could be forgiven for thinking that sex with someone you love (Woody Allen) is widely tolerated, even accepted.In South Africa, the Government recently ran a campaign to “Join the Arm Struggle and stop raping our mothers, sisters, wives and children: Masturbate, Don’t Rape”. It may be, however, that masturbation is the last taboo. In 1995, the US Surgeon-General was fired after suggesting at a press conference that masturbation should be taught in schools. When the Clinton administration was asked for the official policy on the matter, a spokesman replied that any young people who required a practical lesson in masturbation would be below the IQ requirement to enter school. I spoke to many people while researching this article. None of them wished to be credited with “additional research”.In 1921 Dr Ernest Jones wrote: “Modern Clinical psychology has definitely established that autoeroticism is a normal and quite universal phase of human development, and not, as used to be thought, an abnormal perversion of the sexual instinct”. “Self abuse” had previously been regarded as a disease. As late as the early Fifties a US Public Health Service pamphlet warned “self-abuse may seriously hinder a boy’s progress towards vigorous manhood”. It was thought to be the cause of many other health problems.These attitudes can be traced back to the early 18th century, when a certain quack doctor published Onania, in order to persuade the reading public to purchase his remedies. He lists the following frightful consequences: hindered growth, ulcers, consumptions, loss of erection as if they had been castrated, impotence… and in women: relaxes and spoils the retentive faculty, occasions the Fluor Albus (literally white flux), an obnoxious as well as perplexing illness attending that sex, turns complexion pale, swarthy and hagged, hysterics, consumptions and barrenness – at length a total Ineptitude to the Act of Generation itself. Some women, he goes so far as to claim, from the “Lustful and Excessive Abuse of themselves, have this Propension of the Clitoris, and are thus brought into a Resemblance of the Male Sex”. Early doctors were concerned that masturbation literally drained a man of his vital humour. By 1924 JFW Meagher concluded that “the somewhat popular lay idea that masturbation may cause imbecility, consumption, etc., is not only without foundation, but is ridiculous…to falsely tell a suggestible patient that he will surely die or go insane as a result of the habit does no real good”. So what cures were to be found for this vile disease?The author of Onania recommended his Strengthening Tincture (10 shillings) to combat discharge, or his Prolifick Powder (12 shillings) to cure infertility and impotence. Between 1856 and 1919 the U.S. Patent Office granted patents for forty-nine anti-masturbation devices. Thirty-five were for horses and fourteen for humans. The human devices, made for boys, consisted of sharp points turned inward to jab the penis should he get an erection during the night. A possible solution was marriage. Even Sheikh Ar-Tameeny agrees here. “Hasten towards marriage, the door to all goodness, success and richness”. It was not until the 1880s, with the advent of electricity, that doctors and midwives found help in the form of the vibrator. This was an improvement on the dildo, which had been known in ancient times: LYSISTRATA: … Since the day the Milesians betrayed us, I have never once seen an eight-inch gadget even, to be a leathern consolation to us poor widows…” (Aristophanes, ’Lysistrata’ 410 BC). Early models were developed in the 1880s. By 1906, the appliance looked rather like a hairdryer, and came with an impressive array of attachments. Between 1900-1920, vibrators were marketed in American periodicals such as Home Needlework Journal, Women’s Home Companion and Modern Priscilla. Slogans included “all the pleasures of youth…will throb within you”, “Such Delightful Companions”, “Aids That Every Woman Appreciates”, and aimed at the male consumer “A Gift That Will Keep Her Young and Pretty”. Sadly once these devices began to appear in certain films, they were taken off the market. Men have appreciated other aids in this field. In the 4th century BC, Praxiteles unveiled the Knidian Aphrodite – the first naked female statue.Pliny records that her derrière bore the stains of her appreciative male audience’s lust. Apple pie was not the first edible aid either. He had invented a new stunt, so he put it. “You take an apple and you bore out the core. Then you put some cold cream on the inside so as it doesn’t melt too fast. Try it some time. It’ll drive you crazy at first. Anyway it’s cheap and you don’t have to waste much time”. This is Philip Roth’s rendition : “Oh, shove it in me, Big Boy’, cried the cored apple that I banged silly on that picnic. ‘Big Boy, Big Boy, oh give me all you’ve got,’ cried the empty milk bottle that I kept hidden in our storage bin in the basement, to drive wild after school with my vaselined upright”.While Truman Capote was right when he said the nice thing about masturbation is “you don’t have to dress up for it.” If you prefer staying in to getting dressed up and going out, you may be in danger of practising auto sexual masturbation, a perversion for which no interaction with a lover can provide a substitute. This is by contrast to deprivation masturbation, which occurs as a social necessity, because society does not allow the unlimited expression of eroticism.I shall leave you with the words of Mark Twain. “To the lonely it is company; to the forsaken it is a friend; to the aged and impotent it is a benefactor; they that are penniless are yet rich, in that they still have this majestic diversion”.ARCHIVE: 0th Week MT2003last_img read more

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Filming with the Devil

first_imgIt’s an old story: wife has affair, husband catches pair ‘in flagrante delicto’ and violently murders them, before fleeing for his life. Perhaps not. For this cuckolded husband and double murderer was also one of the greatest composers in Renaissance Italy, and is soon to hit our screens as the subject of a no-expensespared biopic by the controversial Italian film director, Bernado Bertolucci. Don Carlo Gesualdo, Prince of Venosa, enjoyed huge notoriety in his time due to his scandalous love life and his radical musical style which, sensuous and wild, changed the face of the previously restrained Italian madrigal. In a recent interview with L a RepubblicaBertolucci himself commented, “Gesualdo, with his prophetic fury, confused me from the first time I heard him. I experienced a carrier of emotions that was almost expressionist.” The great Italian conductor Claudio Abbado, long a fan of Gesualdo, stated in the same article, “Gesualdo knew how to transfigure suffering with previously unheard harmonies. He exalted dissonance, rendering it an instrument of expression of the strongest and saddest emotions. And in this way, he thrust past the boundaries of his time”. And yet, until now, both Gesualdo and his works have been almost completely forgotten. But not for long: Bernado Bertolucci, of Last Tango in Paris and Stealing Beauty fame, has finally admitted that he plans to complete what sources close to him say is a tenyear project, that will reveal the life and music of the unjustly forgotten Prince. The film is to be called Inferno e Paradiso, or Heaven and Hell. The release date is still under wraps, but reports in the Italian press suggest that the first scenes, or “ciaks” as they are called in his native Italy, are expected to be shot this month. So, what can we expect from the famoso Italian? Like his subjectto- be, Bertolucci is no conservative; his notorious film La Luna shocked the world with its theme of mother-son incest set in the world of opera. Last Tango in Paris, the story of two people who meet anonymously for sex in a Paris apartment, was no less stunning or provocative. And his latest release, The Dreamers, caused yet more headlines in September last year by famously including an incestuous relationship between a young boy and his virgin twin sister. When Twentieth Century Fox announced that they wanted to cut some scenes involving sex and nudity in preparation for The Dreamers’ release in America, Bertolucci was outraged, allegedly accusing Fox of having “amputated and mutilated” the film, and suggesting wryly that, “some people obviously think the American public is immature”. Will Heaven and Hell be as controversial as the Italian’s previous efforts? It certainly seems that the combination of Gesualdo’s colourful love life and Bertolucci’s track record will give ample opportunities for sparks to fly. Gesualdo’s unfaithful wife, Maria of Avalos, was reputedly one of the most beautiful women in Italy, and when the Prince killed both her and her courtly lover it caused shock-waves in Neapolitan society which were recorded in many a lamenting madrigal. However, his crime passionellewas forgotten astonishingly quickly, and in 1594, a mere four years after the dirty deed, he was married to Eleonora d’Este, of the powerful Ferrarese Este family. His return to grace coincided with a very fruitful period of madrigal writing which, with their deeply pained, repentant texts, seem to mirror his anguished guilt. Bertolucci,as ever, has a different and juicier interpretation: “It really distresses me that, from which ever way you look at events, you can’t escape the fact that Gesualdo’s most beautiful music was composed after he murdered his wife. It is as if his works were fertilized in the blood of his wife. Gesualdo loved music too much, Maria loved love too much. I am convinced that Gesualdo killed his wife because she stopped him from being creative, deep down, and that he found the pretext of adultery to free himself.” There’s clearly a lot more to the Prince of Venosa than meets the eye, and anyone wishing to find out more could do worse than to dig into either the second edition of Glenn Watkins’ masterly Gesualdo, or Dennis Arnold’s BBC Music Guidewhich somehow manages to compress most of the content of the Watkins’ tome into about fifty very readable pages. Those not wishing to burden themselves with literature can always skip straight to the real thing and put on a CD; Gesualdo: Madrigals, sung by the peerless French early-music group Arts Florissants and conducted by William Christie, is one of the best. As for Inferno e Paradiso: box office heaven or hell? Watch this space.ARCHIVE: 0th week TT 2004last_img read more

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Study finds alcoholic schizophrenics more violent

first_imgSchizophrenics who also abuse alcohol or drugs are four times as likely to commit a violent crime than the average person.In contrast, among those who are clean the risk is only 1.2 times the average.Dr Seena Fazel, researcher from Oxford’s Department of Psychiatry said, “we found that the risk of violent crime committed by people with schizophrenia is a lot lower than people might expect.”The findings suggest that substance abuse treatment may help control the rate of violent crime among schizophrenics. Currently, up to 5% of violent crimes in society are committed by schizophrenics, among whom 30-40% are alcoholics and 10-15% abuse drugs.last_img

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Worcester dressed down

first_imgCherwell were told, “It came as a great shock to most of the college…and scenes in the Lower Library that day were those of confusion and disarray.” The Breakfast Club have since experimented with a “toned down Tie-less Ten Minutes” which has received no complaints, but according to high members of The Club, they still mourn the top-less environment they formerly enjoyed.An anonymous member commented, “I am a big fan of Half Naked Half Hour and a very keen participant. I’ve been taking part for a couple of years now without there being any issues. Contrary to the Librarian’s claims, it is simply a harmless piece of fun where a small group of cracking looking fellas try to add a bit of light to what would otherwise be a dull day of revision… Half Naked Half Hour is not a distraction for people unless they want it to be.”Chloe Cesar, a fresher at Worcester, told Cherwell she was not at all in shock about the new rules, saying, “I can see why the college decided to ban [half naked half hour]. For visitors to the library I expect it must have seemed a bit weird and I’m not surprised college took the action they did. It was just a bit of fun though for people who were revising so the restrictions are annoying, if not entirely unexpected.”A female Medicine finalist us, “I fully support the Breakfast Club. I think having a bit of fun during finals is a great way to boost morale…I personally have participated- other girls have as well- and this was purely my own choice, no pressure from the boys.”“I equally understand that if the library has received complaints, they should act upon them but if they’re from the student body, some people need to lighten up…a few topless bodies really shouldn’t be distracting at our age, and if it helps people work, then why ever not?” Several students interviewed on the subject by Cherwell claimed that temperatures in the Lower Library necessitated bare chests as it frequently became, “hotter than the Sun” due to a lack of air conditioning and sunshine “beaming through the tall windows and actuating the greenhouse effect for a good few hours.”Furthermore, members of The Breakfast Club have asserted that half naked half hours have never been more than the name suggests, for although, “There was once held a Three Quarters Naked Three Quarters of an Hour by a small rebellious offshoot of the Half Naked Half Hour followers,” this was soon “quashed by its founders.”While the email asserts half naked half hour, “may have seemed like a piece of harmless fun,” it goes on to say, “we ask you please to stop this kind of behaviour in the Library…If inappropriate behaviour continues, Library staff will refer the matter to the Dean.”When subsequently contacted, the Library staff at Worcester did not wish to comment further on the issue.The Breakfast Club are far from beaten however, and tell Cherwell that their other clothing conventions, “Beachwear Wednesdays, Suit Up Thursdays and Hat Saturdays have all had remarkable success and an amended motion is expected to pass through the next Worcester College JCR Meeting to cover the expenses of a business lunch for finalists who are dressed in appropriate attire on Thursdays.”A previous motion regarding an expenses account for anyone who “suited-up” to eat on a Thursday at Fire and Stone failed to pass at a JCR Meeting last week with a vote of 23 for, 32 against, and 16 abstentions. Unperturbed, The Club, very active in the filing of JCR motions, has vowed to try again.Julien Anani-Isaac, JCR President of Worcester declined to comment in depth on the matter but did say, “I don’t think widespread nudity is a problem around college.” An email sent last Wednesday to students at Worcester revealed that the Library Committee was imposing a ban on “half naked half hours” in the college library.The Breakfast Club, an ‘infamous’ group of students at Worcester, founded Half Naked Half Hour in 2009 and it has been observed regularly by members and other studiers since then. They describe themselves as an, “inclusive society at Worcester College of thirty or so members who really like a good breakfast” and “a great group of fun loving lads who just don’t want to let the monotony of finals get them down.”The student who is “technically the President of The Club” stated that the edict “has quite literally left our college in a state of chaos.”Between 3 and 4pm daily, up to forty students in the college Lower Library would (half) strip off, continue their work, and then re-dress thirty minutes later. The social norm was to be naked from the waist up so as not to cause offense.Another member of The Club told us, “Half Naked Half Hour has long been a tradition at Worcester College as a way of breaking up the monotony of a long day’s revision and using the opportunity to cool down during the hottest periods of the day.”“Participation has grown over the years to include most of the males who happen to be frequenting the Lower Library during the half hour of semi-naked fashion and a good few females too.”The email from the Librarians at Worcester admonished the practice as unacceptable, a “distraction to other readers”, and cited “a number of complaints” on the issue. The Library Committee also pointed out, “It is not appropriate for groups of people to organise social or other kinds of events in the Library without the permission of the Librarian.”The message further highlighted the fact that the library is used by visiting scholars or shown in tours to groups of visitors from outside the College.last_img read more

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“Rapid deterioration” of finances in Oxford University Hospitals

first_imgWhile the trust has promised to impose stricter controls on expenditure and focus more efforts to employ more staff on its payroll, a health watchdog announced plans to keep a close eye on the new measures.Dr Holthof told The Oxford Times: “The trust is strengthening cost controls in the organisation in order to redirect the spending on delivering patient care.“These measures do not affect the staff employed by the trust but will affect agency staff. We will accelerate the recruitment of medical and nursing staff on our payroll in order to reduce our monthly expenditure on agency staff.”Non-pay expenditure should have been at £357.6 million but increased to £375.2 million throughout the year.Rosalind Pearce, Executive Director of Healthwatch Oxfordshire, said: “This is a significant overspend, and we recognise that the management of Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is going to have to make some difficult decisions in order to address it.”Chairwoman of Patient Voice Jacquie Pearce-Gervis said: “This is obviously very disappointing news. Patient Voice hopes that the control measures being put in place will not affect patient care in any way.” Oxfordshire’s hospital bosses have warned employees that there will be a “rapid deterioration” of finances after Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (OUH) revealed it had overspent by £24m from 2016/17.A statement from the Hospitals’ Chief Executive Bruno Holthof, Chief Executive to the trust’s 12,000 staff, said that “immediate and significant” change was needed, and that there were actions in place to “control both staff pay and non-pay expenditure”.Since he released the statement, Dr Holthof has confirmed the measures would not affect current employees, but agency staff.A report into the trust’s financial performance, which includes the John Radcliffe, the Churchill, the Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre and the Horton General Hospital in Banbury, found that it had overspent on staff pay by £5.5 million and £19 million on non-pay-items such as medical supplies and stationery.The report also listed a number of reasons for the overspend, including a savings shortfall of £13.6 million, increased expenditure to reduce the number of delayed transfers of care patients, and a rise in urgent patient referrals in the winter.last_img read more

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Oxford Dictionaries announce Word of the Year 2018

first_imgThe word ‘toxic’ has beaten out runners up, including ‘big dick energy’, ‘incel’, and ‘gammon’, for the title of Oxford Dictionaries’ Word of the Year 2018.Defined by the dictionary as “poisonous; relating to or caused by poison; very bad, unpleasant, or harmful”, the organisation believes the word represents “an intoxicating descriptor for the year’s most talked about topics.”Justifying its selection in a press release, Oxford Dictionaries said: “In its literal sense, toxic has been ever-present in discussions about the health of our communities and our environment with ‘toxic substance’, ‘toxic gas’, ‘toxic environment’, ‘toxic waste’, ‘toxic algae,’ and ‘toxic air’ appearing as common collocates in our corpus data.“Even ‘toxic slime’ has made the headlines – not to mention the continued discussion around the toxicity of plastics.“But, it’s not just the physical that has been described as toxic this year.  Alongside the literal sense of the word, data shows that people have reached for the word to describe workplaces, schools, relationships, cultures, and stress.“Politically, the #MeToo movement has shone a spotlight on ‘toxic masculinity’ while, more broadly, the word has been applied to the environment for debate fostered by the Brexit vote and by the rhetoric of leaders across the globe.“Online, social media platforms, from Twitter to Facebook, have come under fire for the toxic impact they have on our mental health.”Contestants on the shortlist, including ‘big dick energy’, ‘incel’, ‘gammon’, ‘overtourism’, ‘techlash’ and ‘cakeism’ were also considered, but President of Oxford Dictionaries Casper Grathwohl argued: “Reviewing this year in language we repeatedly encountered the word ‘toxic’ being used to describe an increasing set of conditions that we’re all facing.“Qualifying everything from the entrenched patriarchy to the constant blare of polarizing political rhetoric, ‘toxic’ seems to reflect a growing sense of how extreme, and at times radioactive, we feel aspects of modern life have become.”   Oxford Dictionary’s Word of the Year in 2017 was ‘youthquake’ while ‘post-truth’ topped the list in 2016. The organisation has selected a Word of the Year every year since 2004, with the inaugural winner the noun, ‘chav’.last_img read more

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Oxford professor disinvited from conference

first_imgA spokesperson for Exeter College wrote in a statement on Saturday “In May 2019, Exeter College, Oxford, agreed to provide the venue for the Women’s Liberation at Fifty conference, in enthusiastic celebration of all that the feminist movement stands for, and in recognition of the symbolic importance of the former Ruskin College site, which now houses Exeter College Cohen Quad. Exeter College has played no role at any stage in the taking of decisions about the programme or its speakers.” Neither Oxford International Women’s Festival nor the conference appears to have issued any public statement on Todd’s disinvitation, and she is still listed as a speaker on the programme published online. A photograph circulated online seems to show a programme used at the event with Todd’s name covered by tape. “The claim that some people ‘naturally’ feel feminine is ahistorical, since it overlooks that what is understood as ‘feminine’ or ‘masculine’ has changed over time.” The 1970 Women’s Liberation meeting is regarded as an important landmark in feminist history, which kickstarted the second wave of feminism.  However, trans rights organisations as well as many others regard this concern as transphobic and WPUK as a transphobic group. The student advocacy group Trans Action Oxford told Cherwell: “Trans Action Oxford had no role in the decision to disinvite Selina Todd, and did not call for it. Our stance on giving platforms to bigots like Todd is clear: at a time when trans people are under vicious attack in the press, it is dangerous and irresponsible. Todd is a transphobe, and she is regularly given a platform by the press to spread her hatred. To claim she is being ‘silenced’ is laughable, and we call for trans voices to be uplifted and our oppression highlighted in place of her hatred.” Lola Olufemi, a feminist writer, had posted on Twitter on the previous afternoon that she was withdrawing from the conference “because of their clear links with Woman’s Place UK […] They have no place in my vision or understanding of the political possibilities that feminism offers us.” A statement from Olufemi was read at the event, which said that she had withdrawn because “the organisers had clearly not done enough to investigate speakers’ links to Woman’s Place UK— a clearly transphobic organisation— or to ensure that members of this group would not be in attendance.” In another tweet, referencing a trans man who said he was happy after transitioning, Todd wrote: “Here are lots of success stories as we #transawaythegay. Emmett wasn’t allowed to be a lesbian and had to wear skirts and makeup. But when he realised he was supposed to be a boy and started taking testosterone, his church accepted him. All better now!” In a statement for Cherwell, Todd said “ I am shocked to have been no-platformed by this event, organised by Oxford International Women’s Festival and hosted at Exeter College. I was asked to participate in October 2019, and I explained to the organisers that some trans activists may object to my being there. In fact, trans activists had already tried to shut the conference down because they claimed second-wave feminism was inherently trans-exclusionary.” The protection accorded to Todd comes after attacks on other feminists who oppose the proposed changes to the Gender Recognition Act. Julie Bindel was attacked by a protestor after giving a talk on violence against women at the University of Edinburgh last year.  “Exeter College is committed to the open and respectful discussion of ideas and to providing a supportive and inclusive environment in which the rights and dignity of all its staff and students are respected and valued, and in which people can work and study, without fear of discrimination or harassment.” Cherwell has previously reported on remarks made by Todd that were criticised for being transphobic. She has previously retweeted a parody account called ‘British Gay Eugenics’, which claims that young people are being pushed towards transgender identities as an alternative to being gay or gender non-conforming. She retweeted a tweet from the account which joked: “Please join our MASSIVE thanks to @stonewalluk, @ruth_hunt, Gendered Intelligence, & Mermaids UK for helping #transawaythegay. Parents, there is an alternative to having an embarrassing gay son or lesbian daughter! All it takes is timely intervention!” In footage of the event posted anonymously on YouTube, one of the event organisers is seen explaining that they were forced to disinvite Selina Todd due to threats from other speakers to pull out if she was involved. Prior to this, the organisers are seen reading out a statement from John Watts, Chair of the History Faculty Board, in response to Todd’s disinvitation. He said: “We cannot accept the exclusion of our respected colleague Selina Todd from speaking at this event. As an academic department we simply cannot accept the no platforming of people who hold and express lawful views.” In this same footage, audience members including prominent feminist Julie Bindel are seen questioning the decision to de-platform Selina Todd, and asking for a show of hands to gauge support for her. Samira Ahmed, the presenter who recently won a pay discrimination case against the BBC, also reportedly criticised the decision to no-platform Todd during her scheduled talk at the same event. “Between October 2019 and February 2020 I helped the organisers to get support from Oxford History Faculty and to find media contacts. I was stunned to receive a phone call at 6pm on the evening before the conference telling me that I had been no-platformed because of pressure from trans activists and Feminist Fightback.”  The event organisers did not respond to our request for comment. The event, which took place at Exeter College as part of Oxford International Women’s Festival, marks 50 years since the first Women’s Liberation meeting was held at Ruskin College, Oxford. Todd, whose work specialises in the history of feminism and class relations in Britain, had helped to organise the event and was due to give a brief introductory address. Bindel told The Independent in June that the attacker had screamed at her “saying that I was scum, I was a c***, I was filth,” before attempting “to punch me in the face but was dragged away by security.” “I believe that UK law should remain as it is, with sex a protected characteristic under the 2010 Equality Act, against the claim of some trans activists that people should be able to define themselves as men or as women simply by describing themselves as such.”  Outlining her perspective on trans rights, Todd wrote on her website: “As a gender critical feminist, I have seen my views misrepresented on social media and elsewhere. So here, I explain my views. By ‘gender critical’, I mean that I believe that men and women are defined by their sex, not by culturally constructed gender norms. You can’t change sex – biologically, that is impossible.” “I refute the allegation that I am transphobic.”   Selina Todd has attracted controversy for her involvement with Woman’s Place UK (WPUK), an organisation set up in 2017 to highlight women’s concerns about proposed changes to the Gender Recognition Act. These changes would make any person’s legally recognised sex a matter of self-declaration, and some feminists are concerned that this would undermine legal protections based on sex as a protected characteristic. Selina Todd, who teaches modern history St Hilda’s college, had her invitation rescinded from a feminist conference where she was due to speak on Saturday 29th February. In January this year, Cherwell and other news outlets reported that the University had issued Selina Todd with security personnel at her lectures, after she received a tip off from two students that threats had been made against her.  The event organisers explain themselves first by arguing that Selina Todd’s talk wasn’t important anyway, and then saying that they had proposed a “compromise”: Todd was “welcome” to attend the event as an audience member but not to give her scheduled address. “However, the organisers decided that as a historian of feminism and working-class women, they would like to invite me, and were open to many different points of view being expressed at their event. I was delighted. I am deeply interested in the history of the WLM [Women’s Liberation Movement]— my first academic article focused on it— and my parents met at Ruskin shortly before the first conference was held there.”  In December 2018, Rosa Freedman, a law professor at the University of Reading, said that she had received phone calls making death and rape threats and had urine poured under the door of her office, in retaliation for her public views on gender issues. “The notion that people can ‘feel’ like a woman or like a man is highly socially conservative, implying as it does that being a woman rests on dressing or behaving in a ‘feminine’ way. Being a woman rests both on certain biological facts and on the experience of living in the world as a woman, from birth, an experience that is shaped by particular kinds of oppressions. A movement that claims to be advocating a liberating kind of ‘fluidity’ is in fact reinforcing and promoting highly conservative gendered stereotypes.” After around fifteen minutes of heckling from the audience, one of the event organisers ends up saying that she would invite Todd back to the conference, except that “I don’t have her phone number.”last_img read more

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Magdalen College reopens to tourists despite delayed student returns

first_imgStudents and university leaders have previously expressed frustration at higher education’s omission from the original roadmap. Many were further disheartened by the 17 May date. In response to the announcement that Magdalen would reopen to tourists, Abigail Howe, a Second Year English Literature student at the college, told The Telegraph: “The roadmap has been done in such a way that university students’ return has been prioritised below people having a walk in the college grounds.”  Magdalen College, Oxford has reopened to tourists, despite the fact that not all students will return to the college grounds until mid-May. Under current government guidelines, “outdoor hospitality venues” and “outdoor attractions” have been allowed to open from 12 April. Meanwhile, the government stipulates that “[higher education] providers should not ask students to return if their course can reasonably be continued online” and that students on non-practical courses “should continue to learn remotely and remain where they’re living until in-person teaching starts again, wherever possible”. King’s College, Cambridge, is also accepting visitors during timed slots. Writing on their website, the College said they were “delighted” to open parts of their grounds from 13 April. For a reduced price of £5, members of the public can visit the wildflower meadow and the Xu Zhimo garden. The College also plans to open their Chapel to tourists from 17 May. Magdalen is currently the only Oxford college to reopen to the public. Christ Church remains closed to visitors “at least until the end of the academic year”, although they have advertised the opening of their new takeaway café on 1 May, as well as their shop which is currently open.  Magdalen College has been contacted for comment. Visitors can explore the grounds of the college, including its deer park, for a reduced price of £6 for adults and £5 for Over 65s, children and students from other institutions. Oxford students can visit for free.  In relation to Magdalen’s policy under the new University guidance, Ms Howe told Cherwell: “Magdalen’s returns policy has been really sympathetic and considerate to my knowledge. However, the fact they are legally able to take in tourists before all students can return does highlight the absurdity of the government’s roadmap and the way students have been consistently disregarded by the government.”center_img Image Credit: Ed Webster / CC-BY-2.0 On 13 April, the government announced that in-person teaching for students on non-practical courses would resume “no earlier than 17 May” giving universities just over a month to prepare for this change. Meanwhile, the government’s original roadmap out of lockdown, detailing provisional “unlocking” dates for other sectors, including 12 April for outdoor hospitality and attractions, was announced on 22 February, giving such sectors more time to prepare.  A spokesperson for the Department for Education told Cherwell: “All university students who have not yet returned to campus and in-person teaching will be able to do so alongside 17 May, at the earliest. The timing aligns with Step 3 of the Government’s roadmap, where restrictions on social contact and indoor mixing will be further eased and aims to limit potential public health risks associated with student populations moving across the country.” The Department did not provide comment on the specific reopening of colleges to the public. Magdalen College advertised that they were “open to visitors” on 12 April,  while their students on non-practical courses were not informed of return dates until the following day. Writing on Facebook, Magdalen college advertised that the first 20 visitors would receive a “free Magdalen calendar”. last_img read more

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“READERS FORUM” FEBRUARY 14, 2019

first_imgWe hope that today’s “READERS FORUM” will provoke honest and open dialogue concerning issues that we, as responsible citizens of this community, need to address in a rational and responsible way?WHAT’S ON YOUR MIND TODAY?Todays“Readers Poll” question is: Do you feel that former Vanderburgh Sheriff Eric Williams will do a credible job as a new member of the library board?Please go to our link of our media partner Channel 44 News located in the upper right-hand corner of the City-County Observer so you can get the up-to-date news, weather, and sports.If you would like to advertise on the CCO please contact us at City-County [email protected]:  Any comments posted in this column do not represent the views or opinions of the City-County Observer or our advertisers.FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailSharelast_img read more

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Gas Pipeline Upgrades Underway in Evansville

first_imgJANUARY 26TH, 2018  BRITNEY TAYLOR EVANSVILLE, INDIANA Vectren crews are replacing gas mains in Evansville. This is part of the company’s effort to replace about 1,300 miles of pipeline throughout Indiana.Vectren is spending more than five million dollars to retire more than eight miles of gas main and service lines in Evansville alone.In the last 10 years, about 60 miles have already been replaced within the city – with 130 miles to go.Streets affected during the first project include South Rotherwood Avenue, East Mulberry Street, Bellemeade Avenue, East Gum Street, Runnymede Avenue, and South Englewood Avenue.To view an interactive map displaying all street in Evansville where construction will take place in 2018, click here.Evansville is one of nearly 75 cities in Indiana undergoing this type of pipeline replacement.Britney TaylorWeb ProducerMore Posts – WebsiteFollow Me:TwitterFacebook FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailSharelast_img read more

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