In the news: coercive control and rape culture
Stanford Sexual Assault Case Survivor Emily Doe Speaks Out via @glamourmag
... From the beginning, I was told I was a best case scenario.
I had forensic evidence, sober unbiased witnesses, a slurred voice mail, police at the scene. I had everything, and I was still told it was not a slam dunk. I thought, if this is what having it good looks like, what other hells are survivors living? I’m barely getting through this but I am being told I’m the lucky one, some sort of VIP. It was like being checked into a hotel room for a year with stained sheets, rancid water, and a bucket with an attendant saying, No this is great! Most rooms don’t even have a bucket.
After the trial I was relieved thinking the hardest part was over, and all that was left was the sentencing. I was excited to finally be given a chance to read my statement and declare, I am here. I am not that floppy thing you found behind the garbage, speaking melted words. I am here, I can stand upright, I can speak clearly, I’ve been listening and am painfully aware of all the hurt you’ve been trying to justify. ...
I do it because he’s paranoid and wants to have me branded.” These are the words of Kourtney Leigh, who has the name of her boyfriend, Ryan Wibberley, tattooed across her forehead.
According to Wibberley, she is not the first of his girlfriends to have his name inscribed on their bodies, although none of the others have gone for quite so obvious a location. “It’s a laugh,” he tells the Sun, “It’s not taking advantage because they want it done.” ...
National Treasure at Rape Crisis Scotland
Channel 4’s ‘National Treasure’, which reached its conclusion on 11th October, offered a masterclass in the ways that drama can, if it is good enough, expose and explore some bleak truths in a far more profound and revealing way than its more workaday rival the documentary.
While technically, at least, this was a work of fiction, the unflinching gaze it cast on the reality of rape - its impact, roots, drivers, many manifestations and the power and entitlement underpinning its perpetration created here a tour de force stomach-churning in its honesty, breathtaking in its subtlety and complexity, and utterly bleak in the desolation left by its appropriate and depressingly inevitable conclusion. For this was, first and foremost a work of truth, grounded in a grim reality to which women contacting rape crisis centres bear witness daily.
The truth laid bare by this drama extended far beyond the inevitability with which Paul Finchley got away with rape. His victims having been humiliated in court, their credibility destroyed, it was but a short hop for this serial abuser to reach freedom and the beginning of an almost immediate rehabilitation. National Treasure anatomised rape culture in forensic detail, laying out for our scrutiny the attitudes and behaviours that feed it and allow it to thrive. Paul knows that, paradoxically, to admit to having slept with Rebecca Thornton will enhance his credibility while damaging hers, that her motives for visiting his trailer are far less likely to stand up to scrutiny than his own admission of infidelity and sexual gratification as a cover for rape. ...Download this post as PDF? Click here