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EAFAF Statement: Screening and Discussion of Adult Human Female

Edinburgh Academics for Academic Freedom (EAFAF) are sorry for the continuing delay to rescheduling our screening and discussion of the film Adult Human Female. University managers have assured us that they are committed to enabling this event to go ahead. However, they have imposed several conditions which are proving very difficult to negotiate. In particular, they have insisted we use a specific lecture theatre which is very heavily booked in advance and which has had no availability on any of the dates we have attempted to secure. We are still waiting to find out whether there is going to be any availability of this venue in late March or April.

We have also been required by management to limit the audience to 100 people, who will need to be University of Edinburgh staff and students. We do not think this is the right approach: we think managers should deal with the censorious and unacceptable behaviour of the small number of students who stopped the original screening from going ahead rather than impose limits on the size and nature of our audience. However, in order that our event can be rescheduled and held on campus, we have had to accept this condition.

This means that when we do manage to reschedule our event, most of our original attendees will be disappointed, as the audience will necessarily be much smaller than before. We are sincerely sorry to disappoint so many people.

We are dismayed that it is so difficult to discuss women’s rights at the University of Edinburgh. We think the points of conflict between rights on the basis of sex and rights on the basis of gender identity need to be carefully and respectfully discussed, and we think universities should be a place where this discussion can happen. We do not think that gender-identity theory should be regarded as unassailable on our campus, and we deplore the actions of those who try to stop discussions with which they disagree, whether by smears, slurs and monstering, or, as we saw in December, by physically preventing people from gathering.

We remain committed to rescheduling our discussion and screening of Adult Human Female: please be assured that we are working very hard behind the scenes to try to make this happen despite the onerous conditions imposed by the University of Edinburgh.

8 replies to “EAFAF Statement: Screening and Discussion of Adult Human Female”

  1. Lynne says:

    I am sure the university has already been reminded of its role in terms of public engagement and sharing of knowledge. This seems to me to be an excellent opportunity for both. I worked for the university – retired three years ago. So bitterly disappointed in their current stance on debate. So bitterly disappointed also in the apparent inability of students to think critically and to understand that protest is a right in a free society ( which was hard won and currently at risk again)and the most powerful protest is evidence based, not a game or a prank based on lack of criticality. Thank you for trying in the teeth of such institutional fear.

  2. Archie Flockhart says:

    Disappointed as an Edinburgh graduate to hear this. But if it’s any comfort, I’m sure I am not the only person who would not have been able to attend the original screening but who has now seen the very good documentary online, largely as a result of the coverage of the event.

  3. Andrew Anderson says:

    Lynne is quite right. The University has failed again to stand up for freedom of speech. I don’t understand why it’s so feeble. You can’t both be committed to freedom of speech and allow a malignant minority to suppress it. No effort needs to be made to allow unchallenged freedom of speech; the test is when someone wants to suppress it. It’s a test that the University is failing again and again.

  4. Steve says:

    Hi Andrew. This minority you refer to here at Ed Uni is no more malignant than your comment. Steve. (Current Ed Uni Under Grad.)

  5. Lorna says:

    This film is anti Trans propaganda. No Trans people will be given the chance to speak at the film screening and no Medical professionals who work with Transgender people are speaking either. Only anti Trans bigots. Would a film opposing any other minorities rights be allowed to be shown?

    I am a Feminist who stands with the Trans community and this is not a Women’s Rights film. It is a Right Wing anti Trans film trying to pretend it’s about women’s rights.

    1. jhearn says:

      1) The film is about women’s rights and lesbian/gay rights, and seeks to explain and begin to address the conflicts of rights with gender-identity theory. It’s appropriate to platform critical perspectives of gender-identity theory (a contested set of beliefs) in a university. Our panel is made up of the local contributors to the documentary, and the film-makers.
      2) Multiple events platforming gender-identity theory uncritically go ahead on campus. This calendar year alone, for example, transactivists Katy Montgomerie and Mridul Wadhwa have been platformed, with no critical voices included. Not every event has to feature speakers with a range of perspectives – though we think every event should allow critical questions of the speaker, which has not usually been the case with the gender-identity activist events.
      3) That said, we would love to do an event featuring speakers who advocate for gender-identity theory, and those who are critical of it. We’ve tried in the past, but speakers advocating for gender-identity theory have refused to participate, saying that there is no debate. If you’d be willing to help us organise an event bringing speakers with opposing perspectives together, and/or you have ideas for speakers who would be willing to participate, please do contact us.

      1. Lorna says:

        Would you love to do an event critical of ethic minority rights with people arguing both sides? Or people arguing against rights for disabled people with people arguing both sides? Or gay rights?

        No, Trans people are the only people it’s okay to question their rights. Disgusting

        1. Shona mackinon says:

          Not to mention , the unique infringement on womens rights brought about by men in dresses but who cares about that aeh?

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