Somerville College is considering plans to rename itself ‘Cindyville’ after its popular alumna Cindy Gallop, according to a leaked email received by The Oxford Student yesterday.
The email exchange between the College’s Principle Alice Prochaska and its Head of Development, Liz Cooke dated from last month, reveal the plans for the name change as having been prompted by a desire to ‘reinvigorate the spirit of the college and bring it into the 21st century’. The new name would come into effect from 2015.
Cindy Gallop is renowned for founding the Make Love Not Porn website, where users are encouraged to upload their own porn content. Gallop has stated that she felt compelled to establish the website after dating men in their twenties who derived their sole sexual knowledge from watching hard-core porn. The website aims to foster a more realistic vision of sex based on the sexual experiences of real people.
In the leaked emails, Alice Prochaska expresses uncertainty over the choice of the name. In one paragraph she confesses ‘I am not convinced that Cindy [Gallop] is the most appropriate choice here, much as I greatly applaud her initiative and admire her website’. It remains unclear whether Alice Prochaska has uploaded her own content to the Make Love Not Porn website.
Somerville College was founded in 1879 as an all-women’s college and is currently named after the Scottish mathematician Mary Somerville. It first admitted men in 1992 and notable alumni include Shirley Williams, Indira Ghandi and Margaret Thatcher.
The College authorities were unavailable for comment.