Annaleigh Curtis on trigger warnings and unusual phobias

Really super-thoughtful and interesting.

I wouldn’t expect the world to give me grasshopper trigger warnings. How could I? But if something like 1 in 5 or 1 in 3 students also had a grasshopper phobia, it would be a whole lot more reasonable to expect others to know this and take it into account. It takes work to build a classroom—or a society—where everyone can participate meaningfully. Part of that work is taking into account your students’ life experiences, to the extent that you can know what they are. Whenever I meet someone new and expect that we might be in a situation together where we’ll encounter a grasshopper, I give them a sort of reverse trigger warning. I tell them that I have this phobia, and that I might suddenly start acting weird, running away or suddenly stopping in my tracks. I try to prepare them for my own erratic behavior. We can’t expect this of trauma survivors, but we can work on the assumption that any college classroom contains a few of them. Providing basic trigger warnings about sexual assault, given that knowledge, is the minimally decent thing to do in creating an environment where everyone can succeed.

Read the whole thing.

Debate on Prostitution at

There’s a video of a debate about prostitution up at The Institute of Art and Idea’s website: “Victims and Conquerors”. (I haven’t watched it myself.)

From the site:

Camille Paglia famously claimed “the prostitute is not the victim of men but rather their conqueror”. Is the demeaning of prostitution strangely part of the patriarchy? Is it time to revere the prostitute as an outlaw who controls sexual contact? Or would this demean us all?

The Panel

Niki Adams of the English Collective of Prostitutes joins commentator and author of Life at the Bottom Theodore Darlymple, and Catherine Hakim to examine one of society’s last taboos.

Some of the site’s other debates may also be of interest:

“Rethinking Feminism: Is there a universal goal for women’s rights?”

“In Place of Prejudice: Can rationality provide a basis for morality?”