Karmenife Paulino and the Reclamation of Wesleyan
Suffering from intense anxiety after being sexually assaulted on her college campus, Karmenife Paulino uses art to reclaim her power at Wesleyan University.
I am familiar with how rape culture can permeate college campuses, even causing faculty to miscarry justice. My alma mater, Baylor University has been gaining national attention for it's lack of action on behalf of sexual assault victims. The stats on ESPN and other outlets do not include the survivors that felt there was no point in filing reports. Sadly, is a marginalized group holding at least 7 of my close acquaintances.
In her interview with the Huffington Post, Paulino addressed the theme of interpersonal accountability in her first project, having herself tied up by performers dressed like the friends who ignored her accusation:
"The audience then had to decide: am I going to help her or am I going to watch her writhe in pain? On a campus, that’s really what it’s like. People know what happened and they don’t do anything. We’re all a part of rape culture.”
Too often do affluenza teens get away with using higher learning institutions as their playgrounds. The student who assaulted Karmenife comes from a family so wealthy they have their name on campus buildings. I definitely salute this WOC for reclaiming HER campus HER way.