BitchBuzz: Judy Judy Judy


My column today seems to be snagging the zeitgeist, as Publishers Weekly picked up on the same story. If you don’t know the saga of Pennsylvania English teacher Judy Buranich, read on:

The Problem with Literary Slut Shaming

By K. A. Laity

Because women don’t write anything important, right?

Shocking revelations this week—or at least that’s how it was presented. WNEP in Snyder Country, Pennsylvania ran a story with the deliberately provocative headline, “Parents: English Teacher Writes Racy Novels” as a way to manufacture controversy. Like the Simpsons’ Helen Lovejoy shrieking, “Won’t somebody please think of the children?” the local news station began their “news” story with the following slut-shaming gasp:

A series of racy romance novels by an author named Judy Mays are a little too racy for some parents in our area, especially now that they have discovered the woman known as Judy Mays is teaching their children

Read the rest over at BBHQ and see the comments, too, where I’ve added link to the PW write up and to the fantastic video made by one of her former students that will warm the heart of any teacher.

I’m still reeling from the news about Galway! So much to do — which is why after going to bed around 1am I woke up before 6 and could not get back to sleep. Paperwork is the first order of the day (well, actually laundry was) as I have to have formal permission from my college to be released from the coming year’s teaching. Given the prestige a Fulbright offers to the institution, I suspect it won’t be a problem, but there are always hoops through which one must jump. I got the welcome packet already and emails of a couple of current Fulbrighters so I can ask them about their experiences. The info from the foundation had the tag line about being “A Fulbrighter for Life.” As one of my former students pointed out on Twitter, “It sounds like you just joined the Jets or the Sharks.”