In a review of two recent novels that feature professor-student affairs, reviewer Michelle Dean asks where is the frank discussion of power? She writes,
The professor-student romance debate similarly breaks down, for the most part, to two opposing views. In one corner you have your Roiphes and your Paglias, who style themselves as revolutionaries for celebrating the power dynamics of the status quo. In the other you have feminists more aligned with Andrea Dworkin who seem to believe one can remove power from relationships entirely.
(Presumably, she meant to write instead “feminists more aligned with Andrea Dworkin who seem to believe one can’t remove power from relationships entirely. At least, I’ve never read a word of Dworkin to mean that there was any such thing as sexuality without power. This is a woman who was closely aligned with Catherine Mackinnon, the woman who wrote “man f^(ks woman, subject verb object.”)
So what do these new novelistic treatments of professor-student sexual relationships have to say about them? Continue Reading »