Presentation on theme: "Sexual Violence. Stats on Sexual Force 1994 National Health and Social Lifestyle Survey 9 % of women- by spouse 46 %- someone woman was in love with 22."— Presentation transcript:
Stats on Sexual Force 1994 National Health and Social Lifestyle Survey 9 % of women- by spouse 46 %- someone woman was in love with 22 %- someone woman knew well 19 %- by acquaintance 4 %- by stranger At least 77 % knew attacker very well.
Violence at CU National College Health Assessment- March, 2011 41% of men and 89% of women do not feel safe on the CU campus at night 63% of men and 95% of women do not feel safe in the community surrounding the CU campus at night Extrapolating from the percentages of CU students reporting on the NCHA that they had been the targets of unwanted sexual contact during the last 12 months, it is estimated that: 66 men and 269 women experienced sexual penetration without their consent.during the last twelve months
Consequences of a society that rapes Rape/threat of rape makes it harder for women to earn money and find affordable housing. Rape/threat of rape makes women more dependent on men (and other women). Rape/threat of rape inhibits women’s expressiveness. Rape/threat of rape inhibits the freedom of the eye (male gaze). Rape/threat of rape alters a woman’s meaning and experience of nature, solitude, and night – makes enjoyment of these less possible.
Ultimately, a society that rapes causes FEAR Davis’ actions/reactions caused by female scripts (the ‘Angel’) AND by fear Fear of the consequences of resistance “One thing being raped did to me: It caused me to be sometimes rude to strangers. Not out of anger, though, but out of fear” (536)
Victim Blaming Failure to resist may lead us to blame the victim… However, Acts of violence also often cause the victim to blame themselves… “The police, the lawyers, the judge- the state, the legal system- even he, the criminal, the rapist, thought he deserved decades in jail for what he’d done to me. Why didn’t I?” (537)
What is it about our society that fosters a culture of rape? What are the social constructions in our society which lead to the prevalence of sexual violence?
Western notions of sexual violence Anthropologist Christine Helliwell Western Feminist writings propagate notion of rape as a universal practice=> 2 reasons: – Western understanding of rape as horrific Sexualization of violence as violation of personhood – Emphasis on difference between men and women and consequent linking of rape and difference Rape and patriarchal social forms ‘biological’ bodily differences
Is it possible to argue that rape is socially constructed? Is it possible to argue, even, that its consequences are also socially constructed? Is rape rooted in biology, or in society/culture?
Dayak Community- Gerai, Indonesia Local woman’s experience Anthropologist’s interest Anthropologist’s bafflement to local reactions >“it’s only a penis…how can a penis hurt anyone?”
Dayak Community- Gerai, Indonesia Men and women not fundamentally different- no dichotomized fem./masc. Men’s physical strength not equated with aggression- lazy and incompetent man Rape impossible to comprehend- ‘Comfortable life’: – Partnership between man and woman – No rigid division of labor based on gender No essential bodily differences Sexual organs conceptualized as same – Only difference is location (inside/outside) Sexual intercourse stems from ‘mutual need’ Sexual coercion destroys individual spiritual balance and brings calamity to the group as a whole
CChristine Helliwell, Anthropologist: “In order to understand the practice of rape in countries like Australia and the US, then– and so to work effectively for its eradication there– feminists in these countries must begin to relinquish some of our most ingrained presumptions concerning difference between men and women and, particularly, concerning men’s genitalia and sexuality as inherently brutalizing and penetrative and women’s genitalia as inherently vulnerable and subject to brutalization. Instead, we must begin to explore the ways rape itself produces such experiences of masculinity and femininity and so inscribes sexual difference onto our bodies…For rape imposes difference as much as it is produced by difference.”