UNIVERSITY OF SASKATCHEWAN
Saskatoon, SK, Canada
Canadian artist Jaime Black aims to raise awareness of Canada’s missing or murdered Aboriginal women by putting up an installation art piece at the University of Saskatchewan. The REDress Project was launched in 2010 in Black’s hometown of Winnipeg, and has since spread to college campuses and other public spaces across the country. Black collects donations of red dresses from the public, and then hangs the clothing from trees and buildings. The Native Women’s Association of Canada has estimated that over 600 Aboriginal women have gone missing since 1994, and the United Nations has recently launched an inquiry to investigate the issue.
The hijab debate is making headlines again after a female student was asked to take off her “thing” by a geography lecturer at the Sorbonne. After refusing to do so, the student was asked by the lecturer to leave the class. In 2004, the French government passed a law that prohibits wearing or openly displaying religious symbols in schools, but did not include universities. In 2010, another law banned the full-face veil often worn by Muslim women, known as a niqab or burka, but did not include the headscarf. Although the names of both the student and lecturer have not been released to the public, the university president, Philippe Boutry, apologized to the student, citing the lecturer’s misunderstanding of the 2004 and 2010 laws.
UNIVERSITY OF WARWICK
Coventry, England, UK
The University of Warwick men’s rowing team’s naked calendar is up for sale — and this time, for a good cause. Since 2009, the Warwick Rowers have posed nude for the calendar, but when they discovered those buying the calendar were mostly gay men, the team established a charity called Sport Allies. According to their website, proceeds from sales go to support the charity, a “programme to reach out to young people challenged by bullying, homophobia or low self-esteem.” The university’s women’s rowing team also annually produces a naked calendar whose proceeds go to Macmillan Cancer Support.
ISTANBUL AYDIN UNIVERSITY
Law professor at Istanbul Aydın University, Hayrettin Ökçesiz, was fired last month after he filed a public complaint against Turkey’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, stating that after the Aug. 10 elections, the politician was acting as the country’s president, prime minister and party leader at the same time, which violate government regulations. The university claims Ökçesiz acted against the Higher Education Board’s Institution’s Administrator, Instructors and Civil Servants Disciplinary Regulations, which prohibit scholars and academics from making statements to the press about non-academic issues without prior consent from their university. Ökçesiz plans to file an appeal at the European Court of Human Rights, asserting that his termination is an issue about academic freedom.