that are directly related to the response variable. Using this way of
thinking, this chapter serves as a subjective description of the quasi-
quantitative model for the Hollywood professor that I have created. My
hypothetical model argues that the Hollywood professor and his actions
or tendencies can be broken down by three variables. The first and
second explanatory variables provide how likely the individual is to
exploit students either sexually or intellectually, respectively. I will
elaborate more on the components that contribute to this “likelihood”
later. Finally, there is something called an “interaction variable” in
statistics. When constructing a linear regression model, one must
consider the possibility that some explanatory variables may be related
to one another—a phenomenon referred to as “multicollinearity.”
Based on William Deresiewicz’s references to Plato’s Symposium in his
essay “Love on Campus: Why We Should Understand, and Even
Encourage, a Certain Sort of Erotic Intensity Between Student and
Professor,” I have decided that an interaction between the sexual and
intellectual exploitation variables above is a necessary addition to my
Hollywood professor model. It is in my opinion that these three
variables help to create the perfectly delineated description of how
professors are depicted in Hollywood movies.
Almost every Hollywood professor who pursues sexual
relationships with a student has at least one of three characteristics:
they’re male, they teach English or a subject of the humanities, and/or
they have a bruised ego. While it is not my goal in writing this chapter
to comment on the misogynistic tendencies of Hollywood, I do think
the fact that most of the Hollywood professors who engage in sexual
relationships with their students are male is fundamentally important to
any analysis of the characterization of professors. For example, what is
it that Edward Alcott (Greg Kinnear) from Loser (2000), Hank Evans
(Peter Krause) from We Don’t Live Here Anymore (2004), Dave Jennings
(Donald Sutherland) from Animal House (1978), Bernard Berkman (Jeff
Daniels) from The Squid and the Whale (2005), George Gulden (William
Hurt) from One True Thing (1998), and Grady Tripp (Michael Douglas)
from Wonder Boys (2000) all have in common? They are all English
Previous Page Next Page