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The play oleanna by david mamet, talks about academic issues such as student-

teacher relationship and sexual harassment. However, by the evidence the play presents there
is not victim because both john and carol misunderstood each other actions and words.
Merced college catalog defines sexual harassment as an unwelcome sexual advances,
requests for sexual favors, and other verbal, or physical conduct of a sexual nature, made by
someone from or in the work or educational setting under an encompasses of two kinds of
sexual harassment quid pro quo and hostile environment (sexual harassment). The drama
explores the miscommunication between two people.
First, carol went to johns office acting as the victim by saying that she does not
understand johns class but at some point during the conversation she kept dramatizing and
exaggeration her situation as student. Furthermore, in their discussion she constantly asked
the why of every single thing; she sounds as if she was looking for a specific answer. For
instance, when she asked why would you want to be personal with me (19). She is asking
a question that could link to break certain rules. In other words she was waiting for her
professor to break the line between student and professor. Well on the other hand, john
answer is very inappropriate he said because I like you (21). John strange attitude put his
arm around her shoulder; these are clear evidence about sexual harassment. John breaks the
rules between teacher and student. John seemed to forget all those rules, and probably this
was because all his problems were blocking his rational; when he said to carol your grade
for the whole term is an A if you will come back and meet with me a few more times. Your
grades an A forget about the paper. You didnt like it, you didnt like writing it. Its not
important (25). This quote is like john refers to the quid pro quo that refers to do
something verbal visual or physical in other words you do something for me, Ill do
something for your.
However, I consider john guilty for sexual harassment but there is other part in the act
that makes me think in a different way. I think this is kind of a counterargument. The play
involves unclear language. This means that most of the things that john said carol
misinterpret his words in some way. For example: when john said well, I dont know if Id
put it that away. Listen: Im talking to you as Id talk to my son. Because thats what Id like
him to have that I never had. Im talking to you the way I wish that someone had talked to
me. I dont know how to do it, other than to be personalbut(19) and then carol said,
why would you want to be personal with me? (19). The key word in this dialogue is
Personal. Carol did not hear the entire conversation. She just heard the words to be
personal. She wants in some way that john accepted that he was a bad man but he does not
admit nothing. It is in the last act when the situation gets out of control. This play shows two
different behaviors in one character. John becomes from good man to bad man in three acts.
John has more to lose than carol because he is losing his prestige as teacher breaking the
school rules.
In conclusion, both characters are guilty because any of them didnt know how to
manage the situation and thanks to this they fell into the category of removing the structure of
students and teachers Also, breaking the sexual harassment policy. At least any of them is the
victim. Misunderstand on conversations happened and conflict comes that is why Caron and
john get in trouble.