Disappointed faculty rally around FemSex

To Fr. Scott Pilarz, Provost John Pauly and members of the Marquette community:

We write in the wake of the administration’s decision to disallow the Marquette Gender and Sexuality Resource Center’s sponsorship of the workshop FemSex. We wish to express support for FemSex, to affirm the GSRC’s importance as a space for uncensored discourse and to encourage a culture of transparent and collaborative decision-making.

The FemSex curriculum uses dialogue to promote the dignity of the individual person and respect among people. By affirming the worth and importance of female desire and fostering people’s understanding and appreciation of their bodies and sexuality, the curriculum also cultivates a campus climate in which the sexual assaults that brought Marquette under public scrutiny two years ago can become less likely. As such, FemSex directly supports the GSRC’s mission to “provide a space dedicated to the pursuit of dialogue, growth and empowerment around issues of gender, sex and sexuality.” The GSRC has not only the right but also the responsibility to host FemSex and similar programming.

We were gravely disappointed not only by the original decision to prohibit the GSRC’s sponsorship of FemSex, but also by the way that decision was made – at the request of a limited number of people and with no consultation of parties involved. Though we are heartened by the recent opening of conversation around this issue, we urge the administration to partner more proactively with faculty, staff and students. We also urge implementation of transparent, inclusive decision-making processes on these issues. If Marquette is to “be the difference” not just in letter but in deed, we must actively affirm each other’s diverse perspectives and discern improved ways of working together as a community.


Eugenia Afinoguenova, Lauren Applegate, Tara Baillargeon, Danielle Beverly, Amy Blair, Omega Burckhardt, Gerry Canavan, Roberta Coles, Ed de St. Aubin, Eric Dunnum, Ellen Eckman, Jenn Fishman, Leah Flack, Kristen Foster, Stephen Franzoi, Melissa Ganz, Barbara Glore, Beth Godbee, John Grych, Angelique Harris, Steven Hartman-Keiser, Heather Hathaway, Heather Hlavka, Jim Holstein, CJ Hribal, Andrew Kahrl, Astrida Kaugars, Laurieann Klockow, Lezlie Knox, Christine Krueger, Robert Lowe, Timothy McMahon, Jodi Melamed, Dawne Moon, Sameena Mulla, Kristy Nielson, Rebecca Nowacek, Debra Oswald, Tony Peressini, Anthony Porcelli, Sareene Proodian, Krista Ratcliffe, Heidi Schweizer, Mary Anne Siderits, Angela Sorby, James South, Peter Staudenmaier, Meghan Stroshine, Theresa Tobin, Robert Topp, Sarah Wadsworth, Elizabeth Wawrzyniak, Amelia Zurcher