Marquette drops female sexuality workshop

Feb. 26, 2013 at 5:05 PM
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MILWAUKEE, Feb. 26 (UPI) -- Marquette University in Milwaukee has pulled its sponsorship of the controversial and student-led workshop "FemSex", officials said.

The 12-week workshop, modeled after programs at other colleges, is designed to explore social forces through the lens of female sexuality, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel said Tuesday, but noted critics point to activities in the program, including coloring anatomical images of vaginas and referring to vaginas by a previously offensive term co-opted by feminists, as objectionable.

The controversy comes two years after Marquette, a Catholic college, rescinded the offer of a deanship to a lesbian scholar, calling her writings incompatible with the school's "Catholic mission and identity."

Sponsorship of "FemSex," the Female Sexuality Workshop, initially approved by Marquette's leadership, was withdrawn by its president, the Rev. Scott Pilarz, and Provost John Pauly last week, the newspaper said, who forbade the workshop from continuing in the school's Gender and Sexuality Resource Center, a space founded for "the pursuit of dialogue, growth and empowerment around issues of gender, sex and sexuality."

An unidentified workshop organizer said the program continues at an undisclosed location, and the group is seeking "to be housed under an academic department to procure academic freedom."

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