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Student Strips Down To Underwear During Thesis Presentation At Cornell

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Student Strips Down To Underwear During Thesis Presentation At Cornell

Cornell is one of the most prestigious universities in the USA, full of some of the brightest minds of the youngest generation. But that doesn't mean it's adverse to a little bit of controversy every now and then.

On Saturday, Letitia Chai - a senior at the Ivy League school - was presenting her honor thesis in front of teachers and fellow students when she removed her clothes in front them, reports the Daily Mail.

She did so in response to Rebekah Maggor, her Acting In Public professor, who, according to Chai, had told the student earlier in the week during a trial run of her presentation, that the shorts she was wearing were too short.

Credit: Facebook
Credit: Facebook
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"The first thing that the professor said to me was 'is that really what you would wear?'" Chai said.

"She, a white woman, continued: 'Your shorts are too short'.

"The professor proceeded to tell me, in front of my whole class, that I was inviting the male gaze away from the content of my presentation and onto my body.

"She said I was making a statement by wearing my outfit. I told her that I sure as hell wouldn't change my statement to make her or anyone else feel more comfortable."

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Credit: Facebook/Lchai Thesis
Credit: Facebook/Lchai Thesis

According to Chai, a male international student in the class expressed agreement with the professor.

It was then that Chai said she decided to leave the room, followed by the professor, who allegedly asked Chai what her mother would think of her clothing, to which Chai allegedly replied: "My mom is a feminist, gender and sexuality studies professor. She's fine with my shorts."

Credit: Facebook
Credit: Facebook
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But it seems that not everyone agreed, either with Chai's actions or her version of events that she said cause her to remove her clothes in protest.

She invited students to do the same via her Facebook post, and, when she stripped down to her bra and underwear, a reported 28 of the 44 people in the class joined her.

On the other side of the coin, 11 students in the class issued a joint statement saying her comments didn't accurately reflect what happened in the room.

Maggor told the Cornell Sun: "I do not tell my students what to wear, nor do I define for them what constitutes appropriate dress.

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"I ask them to reflect for themselves and make their own decisions."

In their joint letter, the students said Maggor's comment did include an 'error in phrasing', but the main point was about noting 'the importance of professionalism in certain public speaking situations'. They also said the professor apologized repeatedly for her alleged choice of words.

Featured Image Credit: Facebook/Lchai Thesis

Topics: Viral, Clothing, student

Mischa Pearlmen
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