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Columbia University Tag

Ah yes, Mattress Girl. You may be familiar with Columbia University student Emma Sulkowicz, who carried her mattress around campus in protest after claims she was allegedly raped. Sulkowicz never pressed charges and the university dismissed the case against the alleged offender. By carrying her mattress around, Sulkowicz made national headlines and also earned credit for her performance art. Over the past few months, Sulkowicz's version of events have been challenged by Nungesser's accounting. Nungesser shared his side of the story and provided screen shots of text and Facebook messages to corroborate his recollection of the contentious tale. Following months of defamation due to Sulkowicz's claims, Nungesser recently filed suit against Columbia University in an effort to clear his name. Sulkowicz continued to carry her mattress as a protest against campus rape. At Columbia's graduation this morning, Sulkowicz's mattress made it's final appearance. To a chorus of cheers and applause, Sulkowicz carried her mattress across the stage with the help of three other gals.

I think we have the 2015 Phrase of the Year: Trigger Warning. But now they've gone too far. Ovid's Metamorphoses, which is part of the core curriculum at Columbia College (Columbia University) is described as follows:
The Metamorphoses (Latin: Metamorphōseōn librī: "Books of Transformations") is a Latin narrative poem by the Roman poet Ovid, considered his magnum opus. Comprising fifteen books and over 250 myths, the poem chronicles the history of the world from its creation to the deification of Julius Caesar within a loose mythico-historical framework. Although meeting the criteria for an epic, the poem defies simple genre classification by its use of varying themes and tones. Ovid took inspiration from the genre of metamorphosis poetry, and some of the Metamorphoses derives from earlier treatment of the same myths; however, he diverged significantly from all of his models. One of the most influential works in Western culture, the Metamorphoses has inspired such authors as Dante, Boccaccio, Chaucer, and Shakespeare. Numerous episodes from the poem have been depicted in acclaimed works of sculpture and painting by artists such as Titian. Although interest in Ovid faded after the Renaissance, towards the end of the twentieth century there was a resurgence of attention to his work; today, the Metamorphoses continues to inspire and be retold through various media. The work has been the subject of numerous translations into English, the first by William Caxton in 1480.
Not all is well with The Metamorphoses at Columbia University.

You might remember Emma Sulkowicz, the Columbia University student who vowed to carry her mattress around campus in protest of her alleged rapist who remained on campus. Sulkowicz turned what she says was a horrible tragedy into performance art; performance art that will suffice as her senior thesis. Sulkowicz chose not to press charges, but to pursue allegations through Columbia's 'justice' system instead. A few months ago, Sulkowocz's alleged rapist, German student Jean-Paul Nungesser, provided his side of the story to the The Daily Beast. Nungesser's story, which was corroborated by Facebook and text messages provided to The Daily Beast, deviated significantly from Sulkowicz's version of the sordid tale. Though charges levied against by Nungesser were dismissed by Columbia University, he was judged harshly by his peers as a result of what appeared to be false accusations. When Nungesser's shared his version of events, I wrote:
Nungesser was judged in the court of public opinion because of what appear to be patently false accusations. He was hounded by the press and his peers. Meanwhile, Sulkowicz was praised for her bravery and artistic expression. And the compulsion to vilify the accused, in spite of evidence to the contrary, has yet another notch on its belt.

Remember Emma Sulkowicz, the Columbia student who's carrying her mattress around as long as her alleged rapist is allowed to remain on campus? Her alleged rapist is speaking out. Sulkowicz made national headlines with her harrowing tale of a consensual sexual encounter turned rape. After her alleged rapist was cleared by Columbia's internal justice system, Sulkowicz filed a police report with the NYP, but chose not to pursue the matter through the actual justice system saying she'd heard they'd mishandled cases, she didn't feel safe or comfortable chatting with them, and she was displeased by how long it would take for her case to get to court. Her accused rapist, Paul Nungesser, shared his story exclusively with The Daily Beast in what they're describing as, "dramatically at odds with the prevailing media narrative."

Columbia University has been the focus of heated arguments over the university's handling of sexual assault complaints. In recent days, the names of alleged "rapists" have been scrawled on bathroom walls and in flyers, as reported at The Columbia Spectator, The NY Daily News, and The Columbia Lion, and Jezebel, which provided this redacted image: Also this week, a former Columbia student went public with her story of an alleged rape: Against this backdrop of claims that sexual assaults are not addressed adequately by administrators, there has been substantial pushback at many campuses that the definitions of sexual assault and consent used on campuses are overly broad and that males are not given sufficient due process protection: Earlier today in federal court in New York a Complaint was filed by a former Columbia student alleging that he was unfairly found to have committed a sexual assault based upon allegedly flimsy and inconsistent evidence, without due process protections. The Complaint is embedded at the bottom of this post. The heart of the Complaint is that the sex was consensual, as evidenced by the lack of contemporaneous complaint and a delay of 5 months in complaining:
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