I woke up to a message from a colleague, asking for advice and expressing her outrage. She recently learned that a former student, who had studied for her Masters Degree under my colleague’s supervision, has been driven out of her PhD program due to a sexually harassing professor. What to do? I offered the standard package of advice, knowing this young woman will most likely go quietly for fear of retaliation and career-ending retribution if she reports this professor. All of which leads me to consider #TheMissingWomen. From the actresses who left the film industry due to Harvey Weinstein; the musicians/composers/singers run out and ruined by Russell Simmons; the hostesses/servers/sous-chefs who gritted their teeth and let their pot of rage simmer on low; the hotel maids who escaped groping guests; to the young women who leave academia to avoid sexually harassing professors whose power over them makes or breaks careers — how can we begin to measure the missing women who leave their careers of choice (or necessity) because they have been ground down, groped, sexually harassed and driven out? This is about sexual assault and harassment, to be sure. It is about the violation of bodily integrity and personal dignity, with equal certainty. It is also about the loss of employment, career aspirations, dreams and economic security. How can we begin to measure the economic fallout for #TheMissingWomen?
It is gratifying to hear positions and names — and facts — spoken in open court.
We had a great day in court yesterday, and for the first time facts of the case were discussed in open court. Thank you Phil Gordon, Elizabeth Rodgers, Linda Correia, and the articulate and inspired Lauren Khouri. I am so fortunate to have all of you in my court.
Tomorrow, April 3rd, my Title IX case appeal will be heard in the First Circuit Court of Appeals, Theidon vs. Harvard University, Presidents and Fellows of Harvard College, case no. 18-1270 at the U.S. Federal Courthouse in the Seaport, in Boston. Irony? In another courtroom tomorrow , here in Boston, judges will hear the case against parents in the College Admissions Scandal. Entitlement and privilege on trial? Perhaps. Clear to me that some university professors consider sexual access to students to be part of their compensation package. For professors of the previous generation: even if you were silent then, you need not be silent now. Join us in speaking about about sexually harassing professors. Academia is slow on the #MeToo front. Say something. #TimesUp.
My appeal in my case for denial of tenure based on gender and after I spoke out in support of student complaints of harassment and sexual violence will be argued first case out at 9:30 am. tomorrow in the First Circuit Court of Appeals, Theidon v. Harvard University, President and Fellows of Harvard College, case no. 18-1279, at the U.S. Federal Courthouse in the Seaport, in Boston. There will be an oral argument of 20 min. per side. It is a public hearing and I will be there. It appears the judge has denied Harvard’s motion to substitute names with numbers — may I tell you how I relish hearing the names of the professors and administrators responsible for the retaliation ring out in a court of law?