The Hook Up Is More Than Just a Phrase

An event about sexual assault and harassment was hosted at COD to inform people about consent and the importance of being accepted.


Eva Koureta, Staff Writer

Catharsis Productions is an organization with a mission to change the world by producing innovative, accessible and research-supported programming that challenges oppressive attitudes and shifts behavior. This time Catharsis Productions alongside the Counseling, Advising and Transfer Services at COD created an event that informs people about sexual harassment and assault.

The event started with a game where participants would raise their hands and answer some questions given to them. The questions were divided into topics about women and men, such as “What do you call a woman who has numerous and different lovers?” or “What do you call a man who flirts a lot?” The point of this activity was to notice how many different slang words are used to describe a woman who happens to enjoy having intercourse and how fewer adjectives there are to describe a man who does the same actions.  After some responses, such as “Why do people use more slang words for women and not men?” it was brought to everyone’s attention that usually people criticize women for their actions while they applaud men for the same actions.

People shouted numerous adjectives for women that mostly had a negative meaning and just a few words for men that generally had a positive sense.

The event was not focused only on heterosexual relationships, but it gave a statement about the LGBTQ+ community and simply stated that being gay is not anything less than being straight.

In addition, the stigmas and taboos about having intercourse in high school, having multiple lovers throughout your life, being attracted to men and women or not being sexually attracted to anyone are topics that were brought up in the discussion. People, especially the students, were interested to learn more and not afraid to ask or share their concerns. 

Later in the event, the discussion focused more on sexual assault and harassment and what those definitions truly mean. The first question that was brought up on the topic of assault and harassment was, “Do we all agree that sexual harassment is not acceptable? If not, then get out of this room.” No one thought that these actions are acceptable. 

The emphasis was that the attendees of the event would be informed about the importance of the words “consent” and “stop.” Respecting boundaries, being aware of others’ privacy, and not demanding certain actions from people were a few of the steps mentioned to prevent sexual harassment. 

As human beings, it is our right to protect, defend and express ourselves in any way that we find appropriate and acceptable, the presenters explained. Having people respect the boundaries we set is a right that every individual deserves. No woman, man, or non-binary individual has the right to overstep those boundaries and disrespect someone’s being.  

People shouted numerous adjectives for women that mostly had a negative meaning and just a few words for men that generally had a positive sense.

At the end of the event one of the students raised their hand and stated that this particular event was more enlightening and interesting than any other awareness events that had attended. 

The event was hosted by Counseling, Advising and Transfer Services and part of the event were Dennis Emanos, Amal Jarad, Dana Thompson and Silvia Donatelli. The event was presented by Catharsis Productions.

For more information, visit Catharsis Productions and Counseling, Advising and Transfer Services.

National Sexual Assault Hotline, available 24 hours: 1-800-656-4673