An arts student from Columbia University in New York is carrying around her mattress until her alleged rapist is expelled, taking a personal matter into her own hands.
One of 23 students who filed a joint complaint against the university at the beginning of the year for mishandling sexual assault cases, Emma Sulkowicz is bringing attention to the situation by using it as the subject for her senior thesis project.
Sulkowicz calls the project an “endurance performance art piece” in which she will carry her mattress with her everywhere she goes until her alleged rapist leaves school or is expelled.
“I was raped in my own dorm bed, and since then, that space has become fraught for me. I feel like I’ve carried the weight of what happened there with me everywhere since then,” she explains.