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Tag Archives: Women Rights

Until we treat rapists as ordinary criminals we won’t stop them 

There is a simple and surprisingly durable myth about what causes men to rape women. It goes like this: if a man is too horny, from sexual deprivation or from being constitutionally oversexed, he will lose control in the presence of an unguarded woman. Through the early days of psychology as a science, this basic assumption remained the same. When Richard von Krafft-Ebing wrote Psychopathia Sexualis (1886), he assumed that rapists suffered from either ‘priapism and conditions approaching satyriasis’ or a ‘mental weakness’ that allowed lustful urges to escape their control. It was a simple matter of hydraulics. If the pressure was too great, or the vessel too weak, a horrifying crime would burst forth.
https://aeon.co/essays/until-we-treat-rapists-as-ordinary-criminals-we-wont-stop-them

 
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Posted by on May 20, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

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Women in Power

In 1915 Charlotte Perkins Gilman published a funny but unsettling story called Herland. As the title hints, it’s a fantasy about a nation of women – and women only – that has existed for two thousand years in some remote, still unexplored part of the globe. A magnificent utopia: clean and tidy, collaborative, peaceful (even the cats have stopped killing the birds), brilliantly organised in everything from its sustainable agriculture and delicious food to its social services and education. And it all depends on one miraculous innovation. At the very beginning of its history, the founding mothers had somehow perfected the technique of parthenogenesis. The practical details are a bit unclear, but the women somehow just gave birth to baby girls, with no intervention from men at all. There was no sex in Herland.

The story is all about the disruption of this world when three American males discover it: Vandyck Jennings, the nice-guy narrator; Jeff Margrave, a man whose gallantry is almost the undoing of him in the face of all these ladies; and the truly appalling Terry Nicholson. When they first arrive, Terry refuses to believe that there aren’t some men around somewhere, pulling the strings – because how, after all, could you imagine women running anything? When eventually he has to accept that this is exactly what they are doing, he decides that what Herland needs is a bit of sex and a bit of male mastery. The story ends with Terry unceremoniously deported after one of his bids for mastery, in the bedroom, goes horribly wrong.

There are all kinds of irony to this tale. One joke that Perkins Gilman plays throughout is that the women simply don’t recognise their own achievements. They have independently created an exemplary state, one to be proud of, but when confronted by their three uninvited male visitors, who lie somewhere on the spectrum between spineless and scumbag, they tend to defer to the men’s competence, knowledge and expertise; and they are slightly in awe of the male world outside. Although they have made a utopia, they think they have messed it all up.

https://www.lrb.co.uk/v39/n06/mary-beard/women-in-power

 
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Posted by on April 24, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

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Are you a Trump man or a decent man? Time to choose

If women can’t win, everyone loses. That, at least, is the conclusion of several new studies into how gender attitudes are changing. One team of academics from Wharton, looking into how men and women negotiate, observed that since Donald Trump’s election there had been a marked “increase in men acting more aggressively toward women”. In lab sessions, young men were more inclined than previously to fight young women for a small amount of money that had to be split between them – and the net result was that everyone went home poorer.This sounds like a neat modern morality tale, as do most psychological studies into sex and behaviour – at least the ones that get press attention. We tend to interpret such studies as we want to see them, which makes this sort of research only slightly more useful than reading palms or animal entrails – albeit a lot less fun, because after generations of painstaking psychological research, the one thing academics have conclusively proven is that students are endlessly willing to humiliate themselves for beer money.

Source: Are you a Trump man or a decent man? Time to choose | Laurie Penny | Opinion | The Guardian

 
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Posted by on April 13, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

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‘Big Little Lies’ Was Really About Victims of Abuse, Not Murder

Sunday evening saw the conclusion of Big Little Lies, HBO’s wonderful seven-episode limited series that wasted no time sweeping up scores of captivated viewers. What could have been a tiresome outing—a group of affluent, caterwauling helicopter moms grappling with scandal in the ranks—proved to be a deeply felt, expertly paced puzzle that only grew more compelling with each hour-long installment. Last night, the show ended with a degree of feminist catharsis that feels uncommon in an era defined by political drudgery.

Source: ‘Big Little Lies’ Was Really About Victims of Abuse, Not Murder – Vice

 
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Posted by on April 11, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

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Il colpo d’ala dell’8 marzo

Mentre Donald Trump, e con lui i suoi fan di destra e purtroppo anche di sinistra, fantasticano su un’improbabile de-globalizzazione, spunta (o rispunta) un movimento femminista che ha tutte le caratteristiche di un movimento globale. Mentre i mezzi d’informazione mainstream capovolgono l’elezione di Trump nella sconfitta del femminismo perché il famoso tetto di vetro non è stato infranto neanche stavolta, spunta (o rispunta) un movimento femminista che mette il suddetto tetto di vetro all’ultimo posto della sua agenda, e al primo la vita. Mentre l’egemonia del capitalismo neoliberale vacilla ovunque sotto i colpi di una crisi ormai decennale, e ovunque ripropone per tutta risposta le sue ricette fallimentari senza trovare a sinistra ostacoli rilevanti e aprendo a destra vie di fuga razziste e fascistoidi, spunta (o rispunta) un movimento femminista che si riappropria della centralità femminile nella produzione e nella riproduzione sociale, ne fa una leva sovversiva e chiama tutti, donne uomini e altri generi di ogni paese e di ogni colore, a unirsi a questa spinta sovversiva. Sono i colpi d’ala che solo la politica delle donne è capace periodicamente di inventarsi, gli scarti imprevisti dall’agenda politica e giornalistica del presente che solo la politica delle donne è capace periodicamente di produrre. E che fanno dell’8 marzo di quest’anno una giornata diversa dal solito, inedita, irrituale, inaugurale.

Source: Il colpo d’ala dell’8 marzo – Ida Dominijanni – Internazionale

 
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Posted by on March 8, 2017 in European Union

 

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Silence and powerlessness go hand in hand – women’s voices must be heard

Silence is golden, or so I was told when I was young. Later, everything changed. Silence equals death, the queer activists fighting the neglect and repression around Aids shouted in the streets. Silence is the ocean of the unsaid, the unspeakable, the repressed, the erased, the unheard. It surrounds the scattered islands made up of those allowed to speak and of what can be said and who listens.Silence occurs in many ways for many reasons; each of us has his or her own sea of unspoken words. English is full of overlapping words, but for the purposes of this essay, regard silence as what is imposed, and quiet as what is sought. The tranquillity of a quiet place, of quieting one’s own mind, of a retreat from words and bustle is acoustically the same as the silence of intimidation or repression, but psychically and politically something entirely different. What is unsaid because serenity and introspection are sought and what is not said because the threats are high or the barriers are great are as different as swimming is from drowning. Quiet is to noise as silence is to communication.

Source: Silence and powerlessness go hand in hand – women’s voices must be heard | Rebecca Solnit | Opinion | The Guardian

 
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Posted by on March 8, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

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Topless Uprising Against Sexism

Buenos Aires — Last month, three women in a coastal Argentine town decided to sunbathe sans bikini tops. It could have been inconsequential, but a tourist complaint drew 20 police officers and six patrol cars to the beach to threaten the women with arrest unless they covered up. The episode quickly incited a national debate leading to demonstrations called “tetazos,” or “boob uprisings.” In early February, nearly 2,000 women gathered in different places around the country — topless or covered — to demand their right to bare their breasts.
https://mobile.nytimes.com/2017/02/20/opinion/topless-uprising-against-sexism.html?_r=0&referer=https://www.google.it/search?ei=F_OxWIqBEaT06ASM953IBQ&q=jordana+timerman+nyt&oq=jordana+timerman+nyt&gs_l=mobile-gws-serp.3…11612.13018.0.13870.4.4.0.0.0.0.272.847.0j2j2.4.0….0…1c.1.64.mobile-gws-serp..0.3.691…0i22i30k1j33i160k1.NdKod5DdL0Y

 
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Posted by on February 25, 2017 in South America

 

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Meltdown of the Phantom Snowflakes 

The camera crew wanted a snappy answer. We were filming a short news segment on the beach in Brighton, with a frigid wind gusting around the boom mic and seagulls circling overhead, screaming for chips. I didn’t know how to reply.

The issue of strength comes up a lot these days—for me it’s one of the standard questions I’ve come to expect when people ask me about feminism. That day, however, it stung. The fact was that I’d barely made it out of the house to meet the very nice people from Swiss TV, because I’d spent the previous three hours trying and failing to get out of bed, in a pit of seasonal depression darkened by political despair, somewhere in between where the showering stage ends and the stage in which old Placebo records start to really speak to you. I didn’t have the structural integrity to be my usual snowflake self.

http://thebaffler.com/blog/meltdown-phantom-snowflakes-penny

 
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Posted by on January 5, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

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Article 522: Letting rapists off the hook in Lebanon

The Turkish government, in keeping with its established reputation as a shameless violator of human rights and decency, recently made unfavourable headlines yet again with what international media have termed a “child rape bill” that would have pardoned men convicted of statutory rape provided they marry their victims.
http://www.middleeasteye.net/columns/article-522-letting-rapists-hook-lebanon-895143812

 
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Posted by on December 10, 2016 in Middle East

 

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Angela Merkel’s burqa ban is sexist, racist and wrong

In these febrile times, women’s freedom and autonomy has become a bargaining chip in the poker game of public propaganda — and that goes double for brown, Muslim and migrant women. Angela Merkel should know as well as any other female politician how demeaning it is to be treated as if what you wear is more important than what you say and what you do. With the far-right on the rise across Europe, however, the German chancellor has become the latest lawmaker to call for a partial ban on the burqa and niqab.
http://www.newstatesman.com/politics/feminism/2016/12/angela-merkels-burqa-ban-sexist-racist-and-wrong

 
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Posted by on December 10, 2016 in European Union

 

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