Wellesley-sleepwalker-statue-feat
Lenore Skenazy: ‘Art Is a Trigger’

By on February 12, 2014

Free-Range Kids author Lenore Skenazy penned a compelling editorial for yesterday’s Wall Street Journal on the ongoing controversy over the “Sleepwalker” statue at Wellesley College.

Whereas the director of Wellesley’s art museum tried to convince students that the statue, far from being frightening, was actually “vulnerable” and “passive,” Skenazy argues that even if students do feel “triggered” by the statue, that is not a reason for censorship:

While no one would ever deny the misery of real-life traumas like rape and assault, including the lingering trauma of flashing back on them, since when is it the job of a university to make sure its students never encounter material with unhappy associations? Art is a trigger.

Indeed, behind the “hide that thing!” demand lies the crippling new conviction that what doesn’t kill you makes you weaker. Like a patient with no white-blood cells left, the most minor exposure to a disturbing idea could send you into intensive care. The world must accommodate with sterility.

For more on censorship and the “Sleepwalker” from Lenore Skenazy, read her full piece here.

Schools: Wellesley College