Everyday Victim Blaming

challenging institutional disbelief around domestic & sexual violence and abuse

Rape Culture Is Surveillance Culture by @Scaachi

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Often, people seem to describe rape as an unfortunate accident, two drunk bodies colliding: It’s more about miscommunication than intentionally ignoring a lack of consent, or actively seeking a body and mind that can’t say no. Rape culture doesn’t flourish by error. It’s a methodical operation so ingrained in our public consciousness, we don’t even notice when it’s happening, and we rarely call it out even when we do see it.

The men standing next to me at the bar weren’t trying to figure out how to talk to me. They weren’t discussing what would work as a good opening line or how to impress me in order to get me to willingly go home with one of them. They weren’t even deciding if they wanted to buy me a drink, or what I needed, which was some water. They were conspiring.

Men watch women in a way we’ve long since normalized. It’s normal for men to watch you when you enter a bar, to watch what you’re drinking, what you’re doing, in an attempt to get closer to you. It’s normal for them to offer you a drink, and when you say no, to press a little further with are you sure, come on, have one drink with me. (When a guy asks to buy you a drink, suggest he buy you a snack instead and see how that goes over.) Men watch women at the gym, at work, on the subway: In any space occupied by men and women, the latter are being watched. We’re so used to it that we hardly notice. ...

 

This article was first published by Buzzfeed on 22.5.16. You can find the full text here. 

Inspired by our participation with the Write to End Violence Against Women awards organised by Zero Tolerance, we are now collecting examples of good journalism about domestic and sexual violence and abuse to make it clear that it is possible to write about DSVA without resorting to myths, misrepresentations, minimisation and victim blaming.

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