Casting stones 1

January 14, 2005

I was appalled to read Peter Leapman's response (Letters, January 7) to Meg Barker's article on sexism and sexual relationships between lecturers and students (Soapbox, December 10).

His letter read like a judicial decision on a rape case from the Sixties ("she was wearing a short skirt; she was asking for it"). If anything, Barker's personal expertise and research into non-traditional consensual sexual relationships would make her more qualified to comment on issues regarding sexual relationships and power imbalances. Responses such as Leapman's show the all-too-real discrimination faced by people of alternative sexualities when they have the courage to express them.

Does he think middle-aged lecturers cheating on their wives with their nubile young students is a superior moral stance to responsible, fully consensual non-monogamy?

Melanie F. Wright
Essex University

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