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In Columbia University Rape Case, Accuser and Accused Are Now Fighting It Out in Public

A few years ago, conversations about a campus rape would have been carried out in hushed voices, behind the locked doors of dorm rooms and university student conduct offices. It was rare for a victim to talk openly about the experience, and almost unheard of for the alleged rapist to respond in kind.

No longer. Now that campus sexual assault is in the headlines and on the agendas of everyone from the White House to fraternities, a number of allegations have been made public in dramatic fashion. Nowhere is that shift more striking than in the case of Columbia University senior Emma Sulkowicz, who accused fellow student Paul Nungesser of raping her in August 2012.