A USC Professor is the center of controversy after local news stations were alerted to a handful of topless photos available on her personal blog and website. (Add this to the reasons I regret not having attended George Lucas’ alma mater.)
Dr. Diana York Blaine, who teaches Women’s Studies and is arguably a C cup, reacts to the scandal with little more than a yawn.
The couple of conservative USC students who have dedicated themselves to attacking me clearly grew frustrated at my refusal to react to them, so they upped the ante and contacted the media about my nudie pics. One station bit, and voila, we have a scandal. It was fun watching the broadcasts about me throughout the day as I do what I am trained to do as a gender scholar, interpret media representations; it’s just in this case I was the subject!
Dr. Blaine also used the controversy to teach a class centering on “scandals” in literature, including, “Marquis de Sade’s Justine, The Scarlet Letter, Song of Myself, Leaves of Grass, Lady Chatterley’s Lover, Fear of Flying, The Bluest Eye, etc.”
Now that I have become the scandal du jour, or at least du yesterday, we can see what the dynamics of this incident reveal about our cultural values, how power is constructed through discourse and how it cannot be deployed monolithically but has slips and cracks where opposing voices come through.
When alerted to the naked photos of one its employees, a USC official said, “The University will not be held responsible for the content of personal Web pages. Personal Web pages shall not imply that they are representing or speaking on behalf of the University. ” (source: NBC 4)
In short, it sounds like the plan to tattle on the teacher backfired. The conservative USC students keep getting spanked by Dr. Blaine:
“Ummmm, let’s tell on her,” is in effect their motivation (which my husband has aptly branded “juvenile”), and that way we can get her in trouble with patriarchal authority, in this case the administration at USC. That will show her for disagreeing with us! Put her in her place!
In the meantime, Dr. Blaine’s blog receives more and more visits, and the self described “butt kicker” continues to punt some ass.