Cornell Coed Protests Criticism of Clothing By Taking It Off


"She said I was making a statement by wearing my outfit".

A senior at Cornell University stripped down to her bra and underwear while presenting her thesis to protest her professor saying her clothing was inappropriate the week before.

Rebekah Maggor had questioned Chai's denim cutoff shorts during a test run of the presentation, saying they were too short.

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 said that she was stunned at the comment. "As a professor, she is incredibly open to criticism and, following the incident, listened to what her students had to say regarding her role in what occurred". "She's fine with my shorts", the girl responded, according to the Cornell Daily Sun. When she started the presentation, she first thanked her parents in Korea for being awake till so late and said that, "On Wednesday I sent out a plea for solidarity, solidarity with individuals like myself who have been asked to question ourselves, specifically our appearance for the comfort of others".

She arrived at her formal thesis presentation a few days later dressed initially in the same button-down shirt and jean shorts, but disrobed once more and encouraged those in attendance to follow suit.

So, during her examined presentation, she stripped down to her underwear - inviting the class to do the same.

Then 28 of the 44 people in the room also took off their clothes, The Cornell Sun reported.

The students" statement admitted that although there was an "error in phrasing', the professor's comments were to note the importance of professionalism in certain public speaking situations'. Maggor asked Chai, according to a Facebook post the student wrote later that day.

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

Letitia stripped down to her underwear in protest to a remark that her Acting in Public professor had made about her attire earlier in the week. "I'm going to give the best damn speech of my life", Chai responded.

The class does not have a formalized dress code, but asks students to "dress appropriately for the persona [they] will present", according to the course syllabus obtained by the Sun. Students began discussing their beliefs on the matter. Letitia says she left the room after she claims a male classmate told her she had a "moral obligation" to show less skin. "She also apologized for her choice of words, acknowledging that the notion of "short shorts" on women carries a lot of cultural and political baggage".

In her original Facebook post, Chai wrote why she chose to protest Maggor's comments and the larger issue of policing people's bodies. "This is for every POC man who was told to pull his trousers to be taken seriously, and every POC woman who was asked to straighten her hair to seem intelligent".

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