Sexual Harassment in Canadian Academe: Explorations of Power and Privilege

  • Susan McDaniel University of Alberta
  • Erica Van Roosmalen University of Alberta


Sexual harassment is one of the ways in which women in academe experience inequities. Knowledge about and understanding of sexual harassment is increasing, perhaps even dramatically. Empirical research on sexual harassment in Canada, and particularly in the universities, is an important contributor to increased understanding and the development of programs and policies. In a two-phase 1985 study of women students at one Canadian university, sexual harassment was found to be a common experience as well as one structured by power differentials. Findings from the study allow an exploration of ways in which sexual harassment has structural dimensions in academe, thus creating an environment in which women's opportunities are constrained, a situation that often remains institutionally unapparent.
Original Research