"Think about how helpful it is for a rapist if we consider rape an unseemly topic, one that is too frightening, one that is too complex, one that is too murky, too difficult to prosecute, or simply not worth it. What kind of society do we end up with? We end up with a society where schools and institutions settle cases of sexual violence with as little transparency, as little accountability and as little exposure as possible. A society where it is so hard for the anti-violence movement to come together because in order to compete for limited funding, organizations must stand out, which means by definition they must stand alone. We end up with a society where although, thank God, Congress recently reauthorized the Violence Against Women Act, 22 senators and 138 congressmen voted against it. It’s unconscionable. - Mariska Hargitay


What this is really about is men accusing feminists of sexism and hypocrisy unless they can prove that they spend exactly half of their time, energy, and resources on campaigning on behalf of men. What this is really about is that if feminism only improves the lives of women, it has no value or importance. What this is really about is that feminism only has value if it works on behalf of men and improves the lives of men. What this is really about is anti-feminist men being threatened by women working for women. What they’re really saying is that to talk about women, to focus on women, to point out that something affects women badly; all of this is of no importance or value. It’s classic, really - because men are not always the focus of attention of feminism, these anti-feminists can’t stand it.

What this is about is that some men can’t stand not being the centre of attention.

I’m sick to the back teeth, sick and tired, of feminists being accused of sexism and hypocrisy unless we spend exactly half of our time and resources pointing out every instance of how ‘patriarchy hurts men too’. Gay rights activists aren’t expected to spend half their time campaigning for heterosexuals. Anti-racism activists aren’t expected to spend ages campaigning on behalf of white people. Yet it’s a different story with feminism, isn’t it? The most infuriating thing about this is that - as regular readers will know - I do think that feminism is important for men as well as women and I encourage both men and women to critique mainstream masculinity as well as femininity. But that doesn’t mean that I think that every single instance of feminist activism has to be prefaced with a disclaimer about how this also benefits men. Frankly, I’m getting a little bored of it. I believe it strongly, but there’s only so many times I am forced to repeat it before it gets a little wearing and I start to wonder why I have to keep doing it in the first place.

Yet sadly, this “improving women’s lives is sexist” attitude reflects part of the wider mainstream fear of feminism. It’s why people say things like ‘I’m not a feminist, I’m a humanist’ or ‘I’m not a feminist, I’m in favour of human rights’. It’s because there is a stigma attached to any activism that unashamedly benefits women, as a social group. It’s not seen as worthy enough, and fighting on behalf of women as a group is embarrassing somehow. I’m just talking about plain, uncontroversial activism that improves the lives of women.



The Problem of Women in Comics: Where They Are (and Aren’t) [Opinion]
The popular lens has turned — as it is wont to do every year or so — to the Problem of Women in Comics, namely, whether there are enough of them, and if not, what, if anything, should be done to fix that. As often as not, those conversations have two side effects

Great article, but… yanno what, fuck superhero comics. 



The Problem of Women in Comics: Where They Are (and Aren’t) [Opinion]

The popular lens has turned — as it is wont to do every year or so — to the Problem of Women in Comics, namely, whether there are enough of them, and if not, what, if anything, should be done to fix that. As often as not, those conversations have two side effects


Great article, but… yanno what, fuck superhero comics. 

I’m tired of men who insert themselves into feminist spaces with claims of hurt feelings. I’m tired of men who somehow manage to make every issue about them. I’m tired of men like the one who recently stopped by a friend’s Facebook thread in order to call feminism “cunty,” then lecture the women involved for being too “hostile” in their responses to him. I’m tired of men telling me that my understanding of feminism and rape culture are wrong, as if these aren’t things that I have studied intensely. I’m tired of men who claim to be feminist allies, then abuse that position to their own advantage. I’m so fucking exhausted by the fact that I know that I will have to, at some point in this piece, mention that I understand that not all men are like that. I will have to note that some men are good allies. And all of those things are true! And all of you good allies get cookies! But honestly I’m tired of handing out cookies to people just because they’re being decent fucking human beings.

The Bell Jar

Well isn’t this just a whole pile of truth.

(via visticuffs)


When I was seventeen and preparing to leave for university, my mother’s only brother saw fit to give me some advice.
“Just don’t be an idiot, kid,” he told me, “and don’t ever forget that boys and girls can never just be friends.”
I laughed and answered, “I’m not too worried. And I don’t really think all guys are like that.”

When I was eighteen and the third annual advent of the common cold was rolling through residence like a pestilent fog, a friend texted me asking if there was anything he could do to help.
I told him that if he could bring me up some vitamin water that would be great, if it wasn’t too much trouble.
That semester I learned that human skin cells replace themselves every three to five weeks. I hoped that in a month, maybe I’d stop feeling the echoes of his touch; maybe my new skin would feel cleaner.
It didn’t. But I stood by what I said. Not all guys are like that.

When I was nineteen and my roommate decided the only way to celebrate the end of midterms was to get wasted at a club, I humoured her.
Four drinks, countless leers and five hands up my skirt later, I informed her I was ready to leave.
“I get why you’re upset,” she told me on the walk home, “but you have to tolerate that sort of thing if you want to have any fun. And really, not all guys are like that.”

(Age nineteen also saw me propositioned for casual sex by no fewer than three different male friends, and while I still believe that guys and girls can indeed be just friends, I was beginning to see my uncle’s point.)

When I was twenty and a stranger that started chatting to me in my usual cafe asked if he could walk with me (since we were going the same way and all), I accepted.
Before we’d even made it three blocks he was pulling me into an alleyway and trying to put his hands up my shirt. “You were staring,” he laughed when I asked what the fuck he was doing (I wasn’t), “I’m just taking pity.”
But not all guys are like that.

I am twenty one and a few days ago a friend and I were walking down the street. A car drove by with the windows down, and a young man stuck his head out and whistled as they passed. I ignored it, carrying on with the conversation.
My friend did not. “Did you know those people?” He asked.
“Not at all,” I answered.
Later when we sat down to eat he got this thoughtful look on his face. When I asked what was wrong he said, “You know not all guys do that kind of thing, right? We’re not all like that.”
As if he were imparting some great profound truth I’d never realized before. My entire life has been turned around, because now I’ve been enlightened: not all guys are like that.

No. Not all guys are. But enough are. Enough that I am uncomfortable when a man sits next to me on the bus. Enough that I will cross to the other side of the street if I see a pack of guys coming my way. Enough that even fleeting eye contact with a male stranger makes my insides crawl with unease. Enough that I cannot feel safe alone in a room with some of my male friends, even ones I’ve known for years. Enough that when I go out past dark for chips or milk or toilet paper, I carry a knife, I wear a coat that obscures my figure, I mimic a man’s gait. Enough that three years later I keep the story of that day to myself, when the only thing that saved me from being raped was a right hook to the jaw and a threat to scream in a crowded dorm, because I know what the response will be.

I live my life with the everburning anxiety that someone is going to put their hands on me regardless of my feelings on the matter, and I’m not going to be able to stop them. I live with the knowledge that statistically one in three women have experienced a sexual assault, but even a number like that can’t be trusted when we are harassed into silence. I live with the learned instinct, the ingrained compulsion to keep my mouth shut to jeers and catcalls, to swallow my anger at lewd suggestions and crude gestures, to put up my walls against insults and threats. I live in an environment that necessitates armouring myself against it just to get through a day peacefully, and I now view that as normal. I have adapted to extreme circumstances and am told to treat it as baseline. I carry this fear close to my heart, rooted into my bones, and I do so to keep myself unharmed.

So you can tell me that not all guys are like that, and you’d even be right, but that isn’t the issue anymore. My problem is not that I’m unaware of the fact that some guys are perfectly civil, decent, kind—my problem is simply this:

In a world where this cynical overcaution is the only thing that ensures my safety, I’m no longer willing to take the risk.

r.d. (via vonmoire)


A quick editorial cartoon about the intersection of self-pity, entitlement, rape, territoriality, misogyny and fear of women. You see it all over the place online in the form of Men’s Rights Activists (of whom there are a few reasonable non-misogynists), Men Going Their Own Way, Pick Up Artists, and dudes touting the “Red Pill”, because The Matrix is a good movie. Look any of these up if you have the stomach for it. These are extreme examples, but watered-down forms of these ideas are everywhere.

In lurking their blogs and youtube channels for a while, I’ve noticed that beyond the standard patriarchal chauvinism there is this deep fear of women - what they will do to me, how they will reject me, how they will use me, how they are changing society in a way that does not favor me, how they are making men into something I don’t like, how they are making themselves into something I don’t like, that they won’t give me what I want, and that they won’t give me what I think is rightfully mine. This goes beyond fear of feminism- this is fear of women at its purest. And that, to quote a puppet, leads to anger and hate. It’s sad.

I am a feminist. I think there’s enough ice cream to go around, but it does mean those of us with 3 scoops might have to give one or two up. Also, The Matrix is a fun movie but probably not anything you should be basing a philosophy on.





Oppressed Majority

This Powerful Video Shows Men What It Feels Like To Be Subjected To Sexism And Sexual Violence

i really like this. it’s got the microagressions down in a lot of ways, also things like body language and posture? i recognized the men doing things and speaking in ways that women are trained to and it was awesome to see. also things like all the men being nurses or old secretaries in the police station and the hospital. there was also a moment of white feminism, which was interesting to see translated. basically, i like this a lot because it’s a pretty faithful mirror.



things girls are made to feel ashamed of-

  • having periods
  • choosing what they want to wear on their body
  • wanting to/not wanting to have sex
  • putting boys in the ‘friendzone’
  • standing up against misogyny
  • ruining a boy’s life by telling the police that he raped her
  • abortion
  • having hair on their body
  • not appreciating catcalls
  • not appreciating chivalry
  • having control over their own fucking body

basically living




[This message is in response to this quote from Scarlett Johansson: “You work hard making independent films for fourteen years and you get voted ‘best breasts’.”]

ScarJo made Ghost World when she was 17 and Lost In Translation when she was 18. I have no idea where you got this “majority” of her roles), but I’m pretty sure she’s been in a really wide range of films?? Plus, looking at her most famous “sexy” or “beautiful girl” roles (Vicky Christina Barcelona, Match Point, maybe Girl With Pearl Earing…?), those are all movies focusing on sex and relationships, meaning that the men (Jonathan Rhys Myers, WOODY ALLEN) are playing “sexy” roles as well. ScarJo has won multiple awards for acting, whereas Woody Allen pretty much just plays himself in every movie. But because ScarJo is beautiful and ~sexy, she’s less worthy of respect than her male costars?

Woody Allen has been making the same type of movies for 40 years, using an ever-changing roster of beautiful young women, because once an actress reaches 40, she can no longer fulfill her purpose of being beautiful and desirable.

99% of A-list Hollywood actresses are conventionally attractive, and are habitually cast in roles where a significant part of the role is to be stunningly beautiful. It’s utterly ridiculous to shame an actress for occasionally taking that kind of role, when it’s often the only kind that’s offered to her. In order to maintain a career as an actor, you have to keep making movies. And women don’t have the option of making the kind of dumb “filler” movies male actors do in between their more serious projects, because the vast majority of female-led “fluff” movies are romcoms… which require women to be desirable and beautiful.

Matt Damon can make 10 shitty action movies and will still probably be making “serious” movies until he retires, whereas if ScarJo does a couple of lighthearted romcoms or films where she plays an ~object of desire, she’s automatically a “sexy” actress who isn’t worthy of respect. Despite the fact that at the beginning of her career (ie, her breakout adult role in Ghost World), she was definitely NOT seen as the sex-symbol she is today.

If it was possible for A-list actresses to “use their influence” to create more substantial roles for women, do you REALLY THINK that Hollywood movies would still be as sexist as they are? Yes, a few people like Angelina Jolie have the clout to make their own movies from scratch, about strong female characters. But a) that’s only a tiny minority of super-famous actresses, and b) Angelina Jolie’s level of fame is partly based on the fact that she’s a sex symbol. “The Heat” is just about the most mainstream movie you can make, but the filmmakers were still told to hold off until Bridesmaids came out, in case it seemed like there “wasn’t a market” for female-led comedies. “Alien” is still the most famous example of a female-led sci-fi movie that actually respects its lead character as a human rather than a ~sexy heroine, and it came out in 1979. Drew Barrymore created and funded “Whip It!”, a fantastic female-led coming-of-age dramedy, which almost flopped because people couldn’t deal with a female-led movie that didn’t revolve around a girl obtaining a boyfriend.

This askbox message basically proves ScarJo’s point when she said that after 15 years of making a wide range of movies, she’s still known as “best breasts”. This actress has received so many awards and nominations (including Golden Globes, BAFTAs and a Tony Award) that the list requires a separate Wikipedia page. But because she’s chosen to play a few “sexy” roles, you’ve decided she isn’t worthy of respect.

Which is also why she’s purchased rights to a several films, and most recently plans on directing a period piece of Truman Capote’s Summer Crossing. The brilliant thing about Scarlett is that she doesn’t wait for something to come to her. She goes after it or creates it.