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sabato 5 novembre 2016

Beyond Blurred Lines: Rape Culture in Popular Media

A new book explores the headline-grabbing issue of rape culture, documenting its emergence in comic books, gaming, television and on college campuses. Phillips highlights our attitudes toward criminal justice and policy responses to sexual violence.

From its origins in academic discourse in the 1970s to our collective imagination today, the concept of "rape culture" has resonated in a variety of spheres, including television, gaming, comic book culture, and college campuses. Beyond Blurred Lines: Rape Culture in Popular Media, traces ways that sexual violence is collectively processed, mediated, negotiated, and contested by exploring public reactions to high-profile incidents and rape narratives in popular culture.

The concept of rape culture was initially embraced in popular media - mass media, social media, and popular culture - and contributed to a social understanding of sexual violence that mirrored feminist concerns about the persistence of rape myths and victim-blaming. However, it was later challenged by skeptics who framed the concept as a moral panic. Nickie D. Phillips documents how the conversation shifted from substantiating claims of a rape culture toward growing scrutiny of the prevalence of sexual assault on college campuses. This, in turn, renewed attention toward false allegations, and away from how college enforcement policies fail victims to how they endanger accused young men.
Ultimately, she successfully lends insight into how the debates around rape culture, including microaggressions, gendered harassment and so-called political correctness, inform our collective imaginations and shape our attitudes toward criminal justice and policy responses to sexual violence.
Praise for Beyond Blurred Lines: Rape Culture in Popular Media
"This fascinating and erudite book traces the genealogy and resurgence of 'rape culture' as a popular but highly controversial concept in the collective imagination. Phillips expertly and impartially investigates opposing debates on issues such as "slut-shaming", statistics, political correctness, trigger warnings, censorship and false allegations."-- Nicola Henry, Phd, Senior Lecturer, La Trobe University, Australia
"A must read for feminist and cultural scholars who seek to understand how 'rape culture' has shifted from academic to popular discourse and how the concept has come to occupy part of a national, if not global, debate about sexual violence against women."--Anastasia Powell, Phd, Senior Research Fellow, Justice and Legal Studies, RMIT University Melbourne, Australia

About the Author
Nickie D. Phillips is an associate professor in the Department of Sociology & Criminal Justice at St. Francis College in Brooklyn, NY and director of the college's Center for Crime & Popular Culture. Her research focuses on the intersection of crime, popular culture, and mass media. Phillips' book Comic Book Crime: Truth, Justice, and the American Way (NYU Press), co-authored with Staci Strobl (University of Wisconsin-Platteville), is a cultural criminological analysis of themes of crime and justice in contemporary American comic books.

Follow Phillips on Twitter or visit her blog.

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Sir Jimmy Savile, Donald Trump and The Power of Celebrity 17 OTTOBRE 2016

Music promoter jailed for raping two teenage girls 23 OTTOBRE 2016

Michael Jackson abused a 12-year-old girl 27 OTTOBRE 2016

Trump is a Child Rapist 24 agosto 2016

Bill Clinton Rape Victim speaking out 17 agosto 2016

Bill Cosby and the rape culture 1 DICEMBRE 2014 

"Noi stuprate da Bill Cosby" 28 LUGLIO 2015

The Rise of Rape Culture 10 SETTEMBRE 2015




Pop Music Turned Into Pop Porno 25 AGOSTO 2015

Louise O’Neill explores Ireland’s rape culture in this fascinating Reality Bites documentary

"That is sexual assault,” a journalist told Donald Trump, calmly and carefully, during the second US Presidential debate. “Do you understand that?” As Trump defended his now infamous words as “locker-room talk”, it was not at all clear that he did, representing a particular nadir for rape culture: a man campaigning for the most powerful job in the world who needed to have the concept of consent explained to him.
Louise O’Neill’s involving documentary for RTÉ’s Reality Bites series, Asking For It?, didn’t include that exchange, but it didn’t need to.
There is such distressingly ample evidence of rape culture, so much of it closer to home, that her efforts lay in deciding how to parse and present it. O’Neill, the author of the novel Asking For It, had already written a story about rape and rape culture in small town Ireland, alive to the sexual double standards of slut-shaming and legend-worshipping, and here she turned to the subject behind it. “I want to talk about us,” she said pointedly. “I think we live in a society that doesn’t want to talk about sexual violence.”
Her programme offered a brisk anatomisation of a culture that, for all its progressive advances, would prefer not to talk about sex at all, certainly not meaningfully, while interviews with feminists, psychologists and survivors provide necessary explanations of contentious terms. In a rape culture, sexual aggression is normalised (“locker-room talk”), victims are distrusted or blamed (“Did she drink too much? Was she wearing a short skirt?”), and, with much attention paid to inflammatory rape cases in America and Ireland with lenient sentences or a notorious display of supportive handshakes, justice becomes a vexed issue.
O’Neill features prominently in the programme, presenting it with seriousness, a sense of style and humour, and sensitivity; a personable approach that matters when sex and consent should be a matter of fluent communication. The documentary doesn’t want to be glib, but it knows that we need to make consent sexy. Consent, says psychologist Dr Siobhán O’Higgins from NUIG, is “affirmative, it’s ongoing . . . Do you mind if I take your jocks off?” In short, it’s a conversation.
Children and youth under the age of 18 are the most at risk for sexual assault in Canada, followed by young people aged 18-24, according to Statistics Canada.
This issue is critically important to young people, but so often, older adult voices are prioritized. We spoke with Tessa Hill, Lia Valentis, and Destiny Laldeo about what youth are doing to shift rape culture to consent culture, and how media coverage of sexual violence can better support youth survivors.
Destiny Laldeo is the cofounder of Bad Subject, which provides workshops on consent, rape culture and media literacy to high school students.
Tessa Hill and Lia Valentis are the teenage activists behind the We Give Consent campaign and Allegedly the movie.
Interviewer: What conversations have you heard about media reporting on sexual assault and rape?
Tessa: "In our [school] community there's been a lack of conversation about how the media reports on sexual assault and rape... If you are not comfortable and exposed to the issue of rape culture and sexual assault, then you don't pick up on what's insensitive about using words like 'allegedly.'"
Lia: "When there's [cases like] Jian Ghomeshi or Bill Cosby, they are talked about a lot, but after a while [discussions] die down... It should be a continued conversation... Even if you are not a survivor or perpetrator of sexual assault, the conversation is about everybody, and that's what's missing."
Destiny: "I'm happy that in the university setting, there are a lot of workshops and people speaking about rape culture but these conversations need to happen earlier on so we can have more complex and nuanced conversations about how colonization, gender identity, sexual orientation and race inform how we engage with consent and how we understand consent."
Interviewer: How are your communities creating consent culture?
Tessa: "Our project is helping to talk about consent culture and the new update to the curriculum about creating consent culture... More people in our school are aware of consent and that it is important."
Destiny: "Our project also has a part in creating consent culture because we teach consent in all of its complex and nuanced ways. We go into high school classrooms and we engage with consent as a framework to mitigate the harm we may cause our current/future partners and/or friends. "
Tessa: "I feel like so many people don't have access to this information. This is why we did our project and why we wanted the curriculum to change [so that] everyone has access to this information."
Interviewer: What are the challenges you have seen in media reporting on sexual violence and rape enacted against youth and what changes would you like to see?Lia: "Instead of [talking about] 'This is how you can avoid it,' acknowledge that... it doesn't only happen to white, cisgender, able-bodied women. It doesn't only happen to people of a certain age, but it also happens to youth. And it doesn't matter what you're wearing!"
Destiny: "I think the media doesn't have a solid understanding of sexual violence. They are continuing to perpetuate age-old myths about sexual assault which re-victimizes [survivors]. I would like for the media to create a way of reporting on sexual violence which respects the person who has been harmed and humanizes their experience."
Interviewer: Often survivors are portrayed as white, straight, cisgender, able-bodied women. How can the media avoid minimizing stories of survivors that don't fit this narrative?
Destiny: "If the media turned to more grassroots nonprofits who are creating a dialogue in this discussion based on their experience working with folks who have experienced violence, I think it would minimize the stories which do not contribute to the conversation."
Tessa: "It's necessary that the media look into finding people that will give them more of a variety of information, finding different stories and talking about different parts of the story."
Interviewer: Statistics show most survivors don't report. Why is it important to have a diverse representation of survivorship in media reporting?
Destiny: "It's important to recognize that everyone heals and shows emotions in different ways. There's no correct way to heal or access support... Also, we have limited access to those resources; if we aren't covered by our parent's health insurance as young people we may not get the counselling we need. If you do disclose as someone who has experienced [violence] at school to [someone like] a VP or a counsellor, legally they have to tell your parents and they have to contact child services and the police. Some young folks do not want their parents to know about the violence they have experienced because they fear their family's reaction. The whole process can be quite traumatizing when all one wants to do is figure out how to take care of themself."
Tessa: "I think another part of it that I thought of is creating an understanding that somebody doesn't want to report it on the legal level or on the internet, but they might want to disclose to a relative or to a friend."
Interviewer: There has been a swell in media coverage of rape culture in recent months. What do we still need to address?
Lia: "What's important is the understanding that a lot of people who are part of the discussion right now are people that deliberately sign up for it and the people that go take their time and find the events [to attend], or they connect with people who work on consent and rape culture every day. Maybe bringing [consent education] into school [would help]."
Destiny: "I am loving the conversations that have been happening in the community, not so much what's been happening in the media...As youth we have been filling the gap about what's been left unsaid by adults... Let's go beyond 'yes means yes!' and 'no means no!' And let's make sure that everyone has access to conversations about consent."

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