Rape is unique. No other violent crime is so fraught with controversy, so enmeshed in dispute and in the politics of gender and sexuality… And within the domain of rape, the most highly charged area of debate concerns the issue of false allegations. For centuries, it has been asserted and assumed that women “cry rape,” that a large proportion of rape allegations are maliciously concocted for purposes of revenge or other motives.
The Feminine Mystique (1963) examines the dehumanizing conditions of middle class American women who were excluded from social and political life to be anchored in their wifely and motherly roles. The book marks the Second Wave of American feminism. Friedan writes, “Their only dream was to be perfect wives and mothers” (61). This meant that the whole of an American woman’s life was meant to attract and keep her husband and serve his and children’s needs. She deals with this painful ordeal of women and clearly brings out the ennui, unhappiness, and the lack of companionship experienced by women in their marriages.
“Sweat” by Zora Neale Hurtson exemplifies the amount of disrespect and domestic abuse a woman can handle. It also demonstrated how some males view women in a distasteful and unsatisfied way. Gender and sexuality can initiate most of the specific tactics of domestic violence that can dehumanize an individual, especially women. Zora Neale Hurtson’s character, Delia Jones, demonstrates how women can transition from being inferior to becoming superior in a domestic relationship. The story opened with Delia washing clothes for white people on Sunday, and Sykes verbally abused her for dishonoring God because she was washing clothes that belong to white people on the Sabbath day. As Sykes Jones stated, “Ah done tole you time and again to keep the white folks’ clothes outa dis house,” (site) exemplifying Delia has grown accustomed to remaining silent in the face of abuse. It is on this day after a particularly bad scare and added abuse by being mocked for that fear that her character shifts. Delia’s remarkable transformation as a character from a meek abuse victim to a stronger, independent yet gentle woman occurs whenever Sykes mocks her for her fear of snakes or when there is a scene involving the rattlesnake.
Violence is a constant, a catalyst for the cycle of life and death that has existed since the beginnings of life. However, humans have now, and have been, using violence for senseless pain and suffering. __ In James Gilligan’s novel, Preventing Violence, Gilligan discusses that a major cause of violence is feelings of shame, which usually roots from social factors and views of masculinity. Shame, the most common feeling behind violence, is feeling a lack of self-pride and humiliation.
Katherena Vermette’s novel The Break, is centered around a sexual assault. Through the perspective of eight narrators the story unfolds over the day leading up to the attack, memories triggered by the assault, and the recovery of all those involved. The novel’s two strongest themes are a juxtaposition of gender disparity and the strength and resilience of the women and girls involved. Gendered performance is common throughout the book, for both men and women, although the focus is on the female characters. This essay argues that the gendered performance of the characters is due to Linda Nicholson’s biological foundationalism as explored in Interpreting Gender (1999). The differences in reactions between the men and women of the story are not
Despite the claim that the world has made progress towards gender equality, women are expected to depict feminine characteristics and mannerisms deemed suitable by society. Sandra Cisneros challenges these societal expectations in her poem “Loose Woman” by embracing the negative connotations of a masculine woman. Cisneros faces the pressures of conforming to the American and Latin American status quo of being a woman. Because Cisneros chooses to defy many womanly ideals, she is labeled with “undesirable” identities heavily influenced by religious beliefs. These religious views impact the social expectations of a woman’s sexual orientation as well as her social behavior. Cisneros is labeled with these “undesirable” traits in attempt to be belittled
Anne McClintock wrote her essay “Gonad the Barbarian and the Venus Flytrap: Portraying the female and male orgasm” to examine pornography and how it has changed throughout history and its effects on how women perform as sexual beings. McClintock focuses on the various roles of pornography such as its emphasis on voyeurism, pleasure, and the male ego. She wants her readers to know that women are still not represented in pornography to satisfy their own desires, but they are there to cater to men and their subconscious. I will analyze how McClintock argues that due to the history of sexism towards women, the roles that men and women have in pornography are inherently different because of the societal belief that women are only seen as objects of sexual desire and are solely there to satisfy the male audience.
The objectification of women contains the act of ignoring the personal and intellectual capacities and potentialities of a female; and reducing a women’s value/worth or role in society to that of an instrument for the sexual pleasure that she can produce in minds of another. The representation of women using sexualized images that have increased significantly in the amount and also the severity of the images that’s been used explicitly throughout the 20th century. Advertisement generally represent women as sexual objects, subordinated to men, and even as objects of sexual violence, and such advertisements contribute to discrimination against women in the workplace, and normalize attitudes which results in sexual harassment and even violence
“Although concerning sexual practices between adults and children have existed throughout history and across cultures, whether such behavior was conceived of and defined as ‘abuse’ has been dependent on the societal values of the particular period” (Denov, 2004). In today’s society, sex offending has become an increasingly, concerning phenomenon that individuals must become more aware of. Although generally regarded as a male phenomenon, over time, female perpetrators have become equally important as male perpetrators. Due to the lack of public awareness, female sexual predators go unreported. As a result, society must become more aware of female sexual perpetrators, as many incidents of females assaulting both young men and women have gone unreported for some time. The following paper will focus specifically on why female sex offending is an important issue that the public must become more aware of.
Novelist, Roxane Gay, in her essay “The careless Language of Sexual Violence”, voices her concerns about rape culture and how it is perpetuated in today’s society. She uses anaphora, imagery, and rhetorical questions in order to demonstrate how society “carelessly” (131) normalizes rape.
Toxic Masculinity is the root of men’s oppression, and it requires our attention to be adequately addressed. This is because in the United States we teach boys that demeaning women make them more valuable to society. The idea is that women are only around to give men pleasure and to be seen as objects. In the documentary, we are also told by Joe Ehrmann that in addition to demeaning women we are taught that we need to strive for money and positions of power to obtain money with the help of media and film perpetuating the idea. He also added that if that we look at what society is telling boys, they will lose what is truly important in life. Adding to this, Madeline Levine says that she has had young children tell her that they want to be a
People from all around the world are watching Victoria’s Secret’s fashion show in every year. Especially, this fashion show catches most of teenagers’ attention, not only because the fairy tale-like stage, but also does various supermodels wearing delicate bras shows in the fashion show. There was an evident showed that women in the description of raunch culture were characterized by the increased presence and popularity of female pornographic imagery: high heels, sequins and glitter, bunny rabbit ears and exposed cleavage (Bishop, 2012). Correspondingly, Livingstone (1998) remarked that the number of young women engaged in sex acts with other women has increased and the result was linked with chiefly performed for the titillation of men, rather than reflective of genuine lesbian or bisexual desire. Also, problematic was that young women were positioned in this literature as passively absorbing sexist media and culture.
Margaret Atwood’s novel, The Handmaid’s Tale (1985), presents several controversial yet realistic themes that can be linked to many social justice issues in today’s society. One central point that is highlighted throughout the novel is the objectification of women. In Atwoods novel women transition from normal citizens in society, to baby birthing machines. Women no longer acquire the respect, authority, freedom, and power that men have in the world of Gilead. This objectification that the handmaids are exposed to can be seen all throughout our environment, and there is no limit to where it can occur. At work, schools, on television news, in magazines...women are enclosed in this ideal image and set of standards that is far off from the average
Although the text, Women: Images and Realities a Multicultural Anthology, has done a wonderful job of showcasing the diversity of women’s experience; however, the most striking article we have read so far has been Lori Tharps “In Search of the Elusive Orgasm”. In the essay, Tharps traces her journey to finding an orgasms and begins by describing her love of Harlequin novels as a teenager. In which Tharps discusses how twisted these sex fueled novels are, in which she states “I basically gathered that true love and good sex were synonymous. The only other options were rape and chastity.” (158). Tharps proceeds to describe her marriage with Javier and how the sex was pleasant, but never brought her to the ‘Big O’. Tharps and Javier continue
Laura Mulvey’s article Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema was published in 1975, has set out the concept of visual pleasure and explains it under a system looks in cinema. Her theory points out that men looked at women, men are the subjects of women, and to look at the object position; (women) accept their role of being looked at and creating visual pleasures for men as well as in the social reality. Her approaching is to use the same “political weapon” (“psychoanalytic theory”) that “the unconscious of patriarchal society has structured film form” (the way men used to oppress women) (Mulvey 483), with the hope to leave “the past behind without rejecting it” (Mulvey 485).