Burlesque-Performing Professor Gets Fired
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A college professor was stripped of her teaching job after university officials found out she had a yen for performing burlesque shows.
Sheila M. Addison, an Alameda County resident, received a termination letter from John F. Kennedy University in Pleasant Hill last year for one offense: Performing in San Francisco's Hubba Hubba Revue, which provides political and social commentary on gender, sexuality, and body image stereotypes.
She has filed a claim against the university, saying that her termination was illegal and the result of gender discrimination.
Addison, who holds a PhD and teaches psychology, believed the content of the skits were pertinent; they revealed much about feminist theory and human sexuality.
Addison's defense is that the events took place off campus -- in San Francisco -- and she had not ever advertised them to her students. She also used a stage name -- so nobody would know it was her.
And here is the real show stopper: Addison says that a male professor also had participated in a show outside the university, and disrobed onstage, yet he was never fired from the university, according to her claim.
She filed a lawsuit in San Francisco Superior Court on Wednesday, challenging the university's actions. She claims that the stated and actual reasons for her termination "did not constitute 'good cause' or 'just cause'" under California or federal law, according to the complaint.
It wasn't as if she incorporated it into the college curriculum.