Kristine Herman SOPP Oral History Interview

Antioch College
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00:00:14 - Growing Up and What Brought Her To Antioch

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Partial Transcript: That's a great question. Well, I'm originally from Wisconsin. I came from a long line of teenage parents and I just knew I wanted to leave home at an early age and a friend of mine was doing a college trip with her parents to Antioch and they knew the then president Al Guskin and I just hopped in the backseat of their car and went on this road trip with them from Wisconsin to Ohio, to see this college that my friend did not end up going to. But I remember going, oh my God, this is exactly where I need to be. Like, this is where I see myself. So, you know, I landed there in 1990. I was 17 years old when I entered my first year of Antioch, and it was just 100% aligned with who I was and where I needed to be spending my college years. It was could not have been a more perfect union for me.

Keywords: Al Guskin; Ohio

00:01:21 - Campus Life and Conversations of Consent Prior to the SOPP in 1990

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Partial Transcript: So I arrived in the fall of 1990, which was an explosive time. So when I arrived initially, definitely not, you know, the first month or whatever...

Keywords: Consent; Rape; SOPP; Sexual Assault

00:04:15 - What Brought on the Need for an SOPP

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Partial Transcript: understanding was that there was just an unacceptable response from the campus administration at that time that caused sort of emergency response kind of community organizing around an unacceptable response...

Keywords: Action; Administration; Antioch

00:08:34 - Discussing Her Involvement in the SOPP Organizing

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Partial Transcript: Oh, I wouldn't say I was involved as an organizer. I was involved as a participant in several different ways including in ways I'm not proud of..

Keywords: Community Forum; Organizing; Participant

00:11:45 - Recollections of the Community Meeting w/ the Women in Black

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Partial Transcript: heard the duct tape being ripped across the, you know, as you know, you unroll duct tape, you hear (imitates duct tape being ripped), and it was like then put on a woman and then 'raped' written across in Sharpie and there was another woman in black and you're just standing there...

00:14:53 - The SOPP From '92-'94

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Partial Transcript: I mean it was a process the entire time. I would say by the end of that first year. I had probably changed from the beginning. So then going into, you know, 92 93 and then definitely '93, '94, you know, as I was then an RA, you know, as I was in charge of an entire building of hall advisors. As I was surrounded by, you know, really truly actually surrounded by people who were experiencing assaults and a couple people, or at least one person in particular who was accused of one under the sort of newly evolving process of trying to figure out how to be responsive...

00:18:54 - How the SOPP Shaped Affirmative Consent

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Partial Transcript: seemed to not be even that controversial to propose affirmative ongoing consent throughout an interaction at any escalation. It wasn't like anybody dissected that and said like this is you know, cold and formulaic and there was no- it really didn't feel, the internal debate. Later, when there was, you know, when there were jokes on SNL about it and I remember, you know, the Shannon Doherty skit aside. I remember being on a radio show, my third or fourth year defending the SOP concept and all of the stuff about affirmative consent in it...

Keywords: Affirmative Consent; Dr. Ruth; Katie Rophie; SNL; SOPP; Saturday Night Live; Verbal Consent

00:25:06 - How Antioch Students Influenced other Colleges

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Partial Transcript:, I remember, I wrote a piece, I think it was co-authored, but maybe it wasn't, with Andy Abrams. We did a piece or I did it for the Chronicle of Higher Education. And like we were trying to sort of explain like the benefit of this and the innovativeness, but not like, in a way that was, you know, going to play into the mockery. And so, I had this role as like a sort of a media spokesperson and that really was a profound experience for me...

Keywords: Bard College; Chronicle of Higher Education; Consent

00:29:36 - Was the Policy Effective at Antioch?

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Partial Transcript: Oh gosh. I mean, how do you measure effectiveness? Does it prevent sexual assaults? I don't know about that. Did it minimize the number of assaults? I hope so. Did it reduce them? I hope so. Did it clarify the community expectations for people? I really hope so. I know that at the time it was rolled out...

00:33:09 - How Has the SOPP and Your Involvement With This Shaped Your Life?

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Partial Transcript: ...I mean, I became a gender justice attorney...

00:40:24 - Do You Think There are Conversations We Should Still Be Having About Consent?

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Partial Transcript: Oh my God, yeah. I mean, yeah. I'm a parent. My son is 10. And I'm both like amazed and then sometimes horrified that we're still having conversations with kids about they have a right to say no. And so does everyone else, It feels like I'm still in the minority in teaching my son that no one, you know, you can't touch another person's body without their consent...

00:42:28 - Is There Anything You Regret or That You Would Change About Your Involvement?

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Partial Transcript: Firstly, I think I would have done a little differently, I definitely would have listened more and talked less...

00:45:26 - Do You Have Any Advice For Future and Current Students?