Opinion » Minerva's Breakdown

Professor Mansplainer

One of the most annoying things we have to deal with in this modern age.

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Dear Minerva,

How do I deal with my professor always mansplaining over me and other female classmates?

Sincerely,

Mansplained in Vain

Dear Mansplained,

There is a difference between a man logically explaining something in a respectful manner and "mansplaining," one of the most annoying things we have to deal with in this modern age. We all know mansplaining when it happens because it employs condescending tones and language, and interruptions—for all intents and purposes—to shut one up. It is problematic because it serves to silence people and their perspectives. What is appalling is that this is happening in a place where learning and knowledge are supposed to be experienced. Understanding other people's experiences and positions on an issue or topic is necessary to the process. I would suggest you and some of your classmates who have experienced this mansplaining write an open letter to your professor about this issue—with cited sources to applicable, trustworthy articles about mansplaining, perhaps specifically in educational settings—and let him know his behavior is silencing the female experience. If it continues, take it higher up the organizational food chain. This is an opportunity to show that learning isn't a one-way street. Whatever you do, be polite, be accurate and be strong. He may be a professor, but he's also a person who needs to be accountable.

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