It’s not just a matter of two consenting adults’ hearts wanting what they want.Because not only are these relationships almost always an unacceptable abuse of power, they also affect the dynamics of departments, entire fields, and the very act of academic mentorship altogether.
But what about faculty-faculty relationships, or faculty-administrator relationships?
" I feel it is well within the scope of an acceptable question.
An individual may not initiate or participate in institutional decisions involving a direct benefit or penalty to someone with whom that individual has had a sexual relationship.
So why does it still happen (other than the fact that people enjoy having sex)?
It happens because in many academic disciplines—such as, of course, philosophy, which already enjoys a reputation for misconduct—there is a tendency for beginning scholars to have “philosophical idols,” as explained to me by Meena Krishnamurthy, an assistant professor at the University of Manitoba.
What sorts of restrictions do universities place on romantic or sexual relationships between faculty and graduate students, and what are the underlying issues that motivate these restrictions?