Dankprofessor’s Weblog

A weblog examining sexual politics in higher education and beyond.

Sex and love between students and professors

Well once again Professor Mark Bourrie’s response to the dankprofessor is a non- response.
Here it is unexpurgated, uncensored.

“Dank indeed.
I’ve answered your worthless critique many times.
All you seem to care about is rationalizing
your seduction of your students. You are scum”

Bourrie’s usage of the scum rhetoric strips away his cloak of professionalism.  No attempt to use professionalism here as a rationalization for his attitudes toward professors who have been intimate with their students.  No attempt here for Bourrie to engage in any minimal form of academic or polite or enlightening discourse.  His tactics are those of a hatemonger- objectify and dehumanize those who are on the other side.  “Create” them in whatever terms the hatemonger wishes.  No matter that Dank has never seduced anyone, Bourrie can still create and communicate Dank as a seducer without any need to cite supporting evidence since Dank is a creation of Bourrie’s imagination.  Bourrie can imagine Dank and other professors who are intimate with students in what ever terms he wishes.  Of course, such tells us more about Bourrie than it tells us about Dank, et .al.  The fact that he homogenizes us, makes us all the same, allows no possibility that some of us seduce and some do not, is quite damning of Bourrie.  As the philosopher Martin Buber would likely state, Bourrie lives in an I/it world, a world of impersonal categories, a world that is never allowed to transcend into an I/thou framework, a framework where there is personalization, where individuals are experienced as unique beings, where relationships are explored, where people can be appreciated and even loved.  It is also a world that has been described by the anthropologist Mary Douglas, as a world of dirt and pollution and scum; a world infected by those who have engaged in violations of what is considered to be sacred.

In this world which Bourrie has created, there is no love.  Bourrie along with many others
whose opposition to student professor relationships mainly has an anti-sexual dynamic, cannot comprehend that there can be a loving relationship between a student and a professor.  The idea that a mutual love of knowledge can lead to love, a passion for each other is out of their world.  The idea that some of these relationships become long term and lead to marriage, and even marriage at times without divorce is not considered.  I think that I am on pretty firm ground when I believe that Bourrie has never given any consideration to the possibility that some of the professors and administrators he riles against at Concordia for not advocating student professor bans may very well have fallen in love with and married a student.  And I am also quite sure that Bourrie has never entertained the possibility that some of his students may very well be the children of persons who were once in student professor relationships.

The mundane world of love, marriage and children is not there for Bourrie as applied to student professor relationships. Well, this mundane world is and was part of my world, and Bourrie’s writing me off and others like me as scum is not just beyond good taste, it reflects a descent into indecency and degradation.  It reflects an attempt to pull his readers into his pornographic imagination.

And more must be said about love.  It is striking that Mark Bourrie and his confreres say nothing about love, and nothing about falling in love.  Such is striking since their often avowed goals is to preserve fairness and objectivity when it comes to grading.  But never once does Bourrie say that the professor who has fallen in love with a student, a love which may be only known to the professor, should recuse oneself from grading the loved student or go to his supervisor to insure said love should not bias the grading process.

And as for barring student professor relationships that entail friendship without sex, Bourrie in his recent posting discounts such relationships as being different, not applicable.  But, if ones goal really is to protect fairness in grading, one must know that at times close friendships, loving friendships can produce bonds that could threaten the fairness of the grading process. But Bourrie and apparently many others do not care about love and friendship interfering with grading.  What they care about is sex and furthering their anti-sexual agenda.  The fairness in grading appeal helps them to rationalize their goals, and that is too stamp out sex between students and professors. 

As long as universities are not replaced by online education, there will be love and sex between students and professors.  Such has become and will unfortunately continue to be at least into the near future, the love that dare not speak its name.  And dankprofessor blog readers can be assured that the dankprofessor will continue to speak its name. Such is my pledge.

April 14, 2009 - Posted by | attractive students, Canada, Concordia University, consensual relationships, dating, ethics, grading, higher education, love, Mark Bourrie, passion, sex, sexual harassment, sexual policing, sexual politics, sexual rights, student professor dating

3 Comments »

  1. An understanding of love is an understanding of the self as a human being; such is true wisdom. If a person can’t understand how two people (stripped of all society’s pigeonholing and appropriating of titles and judgments), just HUMAN BEINGS exposed to each other through academia, might come to fall in love, this person has either never fallen in love (and so should not judge that which they do not understand) or does not understand themselves and, I dare say, is not very wise. As I’ve said before, I’m a respectable female university student and I concur with the Dankprofessor’s reasoning on this issue.

    Comment by P.J.D. | April 14, 2009 | Reply

  2. Something that’s been occurring to me recently is how muddy everything gets when you actually have to think about actual people. Take grading bias, for example. I’ve never dated a student and never even considered it, but what about when I know a student is having a horrible hard time? What about the fact that, sadly, I just plain like some students more than others? Of course I try to be absolutely fair and unbiased anyway, but what about students I already know and maybe have *higher* expectations for?

    It’s pretty darned hard for me to look into the eyeballs of my older male colleagues and tell them that they AND their wives are scum.

    Incidentally, I’ve seen a lot of people saying, “oh, it’s ok if TAs get involved with their students, but not professors”–just some thoughts on that. When I was a TA at University of Wisconsin, the professor never did the grading or got to know the students personally. It was the TA who had 100% of the responsibility for grading–all we had to do was hand in a list of which students got Ds or failed and why. Since a lot of the TAs were in their late twenties or early thirties and the students we taught were usually traditionally-aged freshmen, you could argue that the potential for things going FUBAR was greater, not lesser, than if the student had gotten involved with the lecturing professor (though that would have been extremely unlikely.)

    Comment by DCP | April 26, 2009 | Reply

  3. […] has been demonized over and over again by moral zealots and the morally perverse.  To argue as Mark Bourrie has argued that professors involved in these sorts of relationships are “scum” and Erik […]

    Pingback by HOT FOR TEACHER at the University of Minnesota « Dankprofessor’s Weblog | May 2, 2009 | Reply


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