February 12, 2004


Alas a blog! posts an anotomy of rape culture. Although it is in the context of US, the problem is universal. The findings are:

* The overwhelming majority of rapists are male.

* The Myth of Masculinity - Masculinity is defined by power-over. The man who is overpowered by others is less then a man; the man who has power over others is a man among men. Once boys become teens, masculinity is additionally defined by the absolutely crucial task of getting laid.

* Low regard for women- women aren't respected as equals, by and large. Many rapists don't rape because they hate and want to hurt women; it's not that personal. Rapists rape because they want sex; they don't consider the woman's feelings at all, because a woman's feelings aren't worth considering. They're just women, after all.

* Sexuality is something possessed by women, which is given to (or taken by) men -it's pretty obvious why men's magazines, wanting to sell copies with a sexy cover, usually use photos of mostly-undressed women. But why do women's magazines do the exact same thing? Because to do a sexy magazine cover, you generally have to show a photo of a woman. Sexuality equals women in our culture; it is something possessed by women, not by men.

That's also why women are taught to wait to be asked for a dance (or for a date), while men are taught to do the asking. Women have it; men ask for it.

The reasons for rape cases prevailing in Bangladesh are:

*All of the above and
*Women and children are soft targets as many of them are less educated and ignorant of precautions.
*Its easy to get away with rapes in this country. Lack of witness does not make a firm case against rapist. Rape victims must produce proof of evidence to doctors within 24 hours, which is not possible allways.
* Rape victims are socially abhorred. So rape is used to take revenge or disgrace somebody.

So whats your view on this? Are there more reasons? What do you recommend to prevent this universal threat?


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