Albert wrote:My main point that I'm trying to make is that some women themselves facilitate and perpetuate rape culture. They themselves legitimize behaviour that otherwise is wrong.
Not only that they themselves do exact same thing to men. (catcalling)
Indeed, there are women who do as much to men.
Though what I'm unclear about is that it is necessarily as prevalent among women or whether it has the same function. In which much of the harassment towards men is also perpetuated by men.
For example, men don't necessarily experience harassment in the same way as women do and although them being a target may be itself a function of enforced regulation of social norms. As sexual harassment towards women itself functions under the guise that if women only restrained themselves to the good behaviour expected of women that they wouldn't be subject to harm.
The sexual harassment of men? Exploring the concept with theory and data
Only a few men mentioned sexual coercion as a form of sexual harassment against men, perhaps because of its low base rate. Unwanted sexual attention was mentioned more than any other type of behavior. The comments of the few men who drew on personal experiences suggest that men receive unwanted sexual attention from both men and women. The second most frequent category of behavior described was gender harassment. As predicted, gender harassment took on different forms for men than for women. Negative stereotyping of men and punishments for deviating from the masculine gender role can be viewed as direct negotiations of gender in the workplace: the former denigrating adherence to traditional conceptualizations of masculinity and the latter enforcing it. The latter form has not been examined by the sexual harassment literature so far-for men, or its counterpart for women, enforcing traditional conceptualizations of femininity. That these men identified such experiences as sexually harassing supports our suggestion that sexual harassment stems from such negotiations of gender.
Two other themes emerged in the men’s comments regarding what they thought constituted sexual harassment for men: perceived organizational favoring of women, and women abusing this perceived power and privilege. Again, sexual harassment can be interpreted as one aspect of the negotiation and renegotiation of gender roles that act as forms of social control. According to this framework, men will experience as sexually harassing phenomena that threaten their high status, and women will experience as sexually harassing phenomena that reinforce their low status. It is therefore easy to see how the two perceived phenomena of organizational favoring of women and women abusing this power may be interpreted by men as harassing: they act to threaten male privilege. Men’s perceptions of this as sexual harassment may represent a backlash to changing norms in the workplace. It seems as if some of these men may be using the language of sexual harassment to give voice to their unease and anger at the changing workplace.
The evaluations, sense of control, and affective responses reported by these men with regard to sexual harassment suggest that the construct is not an entirely negative one, a very threatening one, or even a very serious one (see also Gutek, 1985). Almost half the men evaluating sexually harassing behaviors gave them a positive evaluation, indicating that they would enjoy being sexually harassed. (By definition, then, they would not experience harassment.) The vast majority of the men indicated that they perceive a good deal of control in a sexually harassing situation- that they could easily stop or change it. Finally, no men said that they would be threatened by potentially sexually harassing behaviors, and several of them explicitly offered that they would not be threatened. Clearly these men do not expect to experience the levels of anxiety and loss of control that women report enduring when sexually harassed. This would suggest that what these men generally experience or are expecting to experience when they speak of sexual harassment is social-sexual behavior, rather than harassment per se (Gutek et al. , 1990).
Finally, of the men who reported harassing experiences, more of them had been harassed by other men than by women. This concurs with OUT power analysis, as men have more organizational, social, and physical power with which to harass other men than do women. In fact, it is likely that the closest analogy to male-to-female sexual harassment for men is that of male-to-male harassment. This issue has only recently begun to be explored (Waldo, Berdahl, 81 Fitzgerald, 1996).
For an experience to be sexually harassing from a psychological perspective, it must be stressful and threatening to the victim’s well-being (Fitzgerald et al., 1995; Fitzgerald et al., in press). Results from both of our studies suggest that men expect to experience much less anxiety and discomfort as targets of potentially harassing behaviors from a female perpetrator than women do as targets of potentially harassing behaviors from a male perpetrator. This suggests that, even if men report experiencing such behaviors, they may not experience them as “harassment” from a psychological perspective. Thus, studies that report simple frequencies among men of such behaviors may overestimate the frequency of men’s sexual harassment by women from a psychological perspective.
From a legal perspective, an experience is sexually harassing if it is motivated by the gender of the victim, if it is unwelcome, if it is generally repetitive, and if it could lead to negative organizational and psychological outcomes. Previous research and some of our results suggest that much of what women call sexual harassment is not unwelcome or threatening when experienced by men, and that the consequences are not as damaging for men as they are for women. Some behaviors, however, may be experienced as unwelcome and threatening and may lead to negative outcomes for men - for example, the rare case of sexual coercion, which involves the abuse of organizational power.
Which I think relates well to your lower point that not all women are feminists and even under the label feminism, there isn't a single coherent and self conscious movement but different strands.
Similarly when women dress in revealing clothing do they not show that they are not more but mere objects of beauty and desire, with no other essence to them? But feminism has made this a taboo to acknowledge. Yet do not such women perpetuate and facilitate objectification of themselves and women; the exact thing that feminist are fighting against.
Do women choose to willfully ignore this aspect of social relations between men and women? Do they willfully ignore how negatively they effect men and women alike by their vulgar expression with their clothing? Do they not legitimize as a standard of social norm that otherwise is wrong. Yet when pressed on this subject they become defensive and have made it to the point that it is culturally a taboo now to bring up this subject.
Btw, if men experience something positive, like seeing a woman in vulgar attire, it does not mean it is a good thing.
So again, perhaps men are not the only ones who partake in rape culture.
Also to point out. One of the fundamental mistakes of feminism aside of many, is that it proposes to represent all women, when it does not. You can never represent all women; as there are women that differ drastically from one another. Similarity their attempt to lump all men into one category of behaviour is also false, as men also differ from one another.
This picture in our minds that feminist have painted, neatly defined women on one side VS. one character defined men on the other; is fundamentally false and impractically simplistic.
I think the issue is that no matter what a woman does in regards to her attire, it does nothing to displace the view of some that her value is based in her sexuality. Covering up would only regress the issue in regards to helping to normalize women's bodies as not inherently sexual, but often seen as sexual as a result of desire projected onto them, which hiding one's body exacerbates. One is only naked because one wears clothes, nudity doesn't exist when it's more normative to show ones body but not necessarily in a sexual context but even in just a practical way like it being hot.
But there are indeed women who make money and cater to men's desire of them. But the basis of such seems in part related to the commodification of relations inherent to capitalism having expanded the market over society.
When money becomes irrelevant to sexuality though, I don't think status will be as significant as we can already see it in a minor form in regards to powerful women who are just as sexual at men without consequence.
Although many women who are of less status and positional power suffer severe consequences for being sexual beings.
Perhaps you need to be clearer in regards to how women's attire is meant to be implicated in 'rape culture'. As there can be a lot to unpack there, for example the common notion that women's attire is provocative is very loaded and often gives primacy to men's desires over the actual intentions of women, men's desire setting the meaning of women's actions and appearance, silencing women in effect.
The concept of provocative dress reinforces two kinds of objectification. First, revealing women’s clothing is construed as signifying sex by drawing men’s attention to women’s sexualized body parts; a woman’s breasts, buttocks and legs can mean “sex” regardless of the personal desires of the woman in question.111 This is a form of “fungibility,” a form of objectification discussed by Martha Nussbaum that involves the “reduction of a person to a set of body parts.”112 Second, and perhaps more troublesome, the idea of provocative dress illustrates what Rae Langton describes as the denial of autonomy through the affirmation of autonomy.113 When a woman’s outfit is described as provocative, she is reduced to a depersonalized sexual object or collection of sexual body parts. In addition, a specific subjective desire is attributed to her—the desire for sexual attention from men. This attribution is not a form of respect for a woman’s autonomy. Instead, it denies her autonomy by undermining the credibility and authority of her actual desires, even if she explicitly and repeatedly denies the attributed desire. Her stated preferences, if inconsistent with the intentions and desires that men attribute to her, are dismissed as not reflecting what she “really wants”—she says “no,” but her outfit says “yes.” Thus, it is men’s interpretations of her desires and intentions that are taken as authoritative. Women’s actual spoken desires and intentions regarding men’s sexual attention are silenced.
To which the idea of an uncontrollable and prokved male sexuality as basis of sexual violence serves to legitimize restrictions on women instead of men.
The willingness of courts to perpetuate the notion of the male uncontrollable urge through the guise of protectionism obfuscates the real sexism involved. The decisions discussed in this article merely serve to maintain male power. They expect women to operate around men in a limited role and within the male-defined system. The notion of an uncontrollable urge, which is provoked by women, excuses men for their behavior and reinforces the social and political tendency to blame the victim. 184 It perpetuates the idea that men's violence against women is inevitable and thereby plays upon women's fear for their own physical safety. 185 The perceived threat of rape, and of invoking the male urge, functions much like a protection racket in which men protect their women from the abuse of other men. 80 Mae West once said, "Every man I meet wants to protect me. Can't figure out what from."187
Patriarchy is a system of beliefs that fundamentally asserts the supremacy of the male (Brinson, 1992:361). It exist through people’s upholding of the structures without questioning them, because it has become a system of norms (Thomsson, ElvinNowak, 2013:38) that include myths, rules and assumptions which with time are taken for granted (Ibid, 2013:30). Men’s position of dominance is normalized through language (Berrington, Jones, 2002:308) and that process includes a normalizing of male aggression. Sexual violence is constructed as a risk that women can protect themselves against, if acting responsible (Ibid:317). By that, women are socialized into fear of male violence (Ibid:319) and thus become subjects of violence and objects of fear (Marcus, 1992:398), the so called subjection process (Ibid:394). Due to that, women are expected to monitor and restrict their behavior (Berrington, Jones, 2002:317) and even hinder their movements in an attempt to ensure the safety of their bodies (Edwards et al, 2011:767). Dr. Eileen Berrington and Dr. Helen Jones, mean that the relationship between the patriarchal construction of the society and the existence of male violence can be understood as part of a system of power (Berrington, Jones, 2002:308).
Rape myths exist in symbiosis with cultural stereotypes of “ideal” behavior for women and men (Brinson, 1992:361). Questioning the behavior of the woman before the rape is the same thing as saying that something she did provoked a man to rape her. By talking about being in the “wrong” place, wearing the “wrong” clothes and acting in the “wrong” way presupposes that there is a right way for women to behave (Ibid:362). These “norms of femininity” as Berrington and Jones chose to call them, describe the cultural attributes and expectations assigned to women (Berrington, Jones, 2002:309). The horror of rape is not that it steals something from women, but that it makes women into things to be taken (Marcus, 1992:399). The production of a norm of behavior is a form of power that regulate, control and normalize and aim to produce docile and useful bodies (Henderson, 2013:238).This creates an assumption that that women can, when behaving correct and responsible, avoid the violence of men (Berrington, Jones, 2002:307). Henderson claims that historically women have been told to avoid rape by restricting their choices, movements and behavior (Henderson, 2013:233).
Basically, the idea of women being provocative is the basis on which women's autonomy in the public space is restricted, legitimizing a paternalistic attitude towards women to protect them from the hostile men.
This is me speculating where the subject could go as I think your point is left unknown and not fleshed out.
We have politicians that represent an entire nations of people with diverse views regardless of how well or poorly they believe those representatives effectively represent their views and values.
But I get your point that there isn't homogeneity in regards to women as a self conscious collective movement. Which is exactly why identity is at best a heuristic but not a accurate basis of meaningful relationship between people as we see in the abstract representation of polls that arbitrarily group ethnic groups in things like their votes.
Feminism as a political project in the west is with the rest of any possible movement are in a peculiar stage having objectified their liberal variants in society to varying degrees but not having exhausted itself in other strands (ie liberalism doesn't solve the woman question in the end, but a stage).
Winship’s comments bring us to the complex question of post-feminism. Does the term imply that the moment of feminism has been and gone; that it is now a movement of the past? Certainly, there are those who would wish to suggest that this is the case. According to Winship, ‘if it means anything useful’, the term refers to the way in which the ‘boundaries between feminists and non-feminists have become fuzzy’ (149). This is to a large extent due to the way in which ‘with the “success” of feminism some feminist ideas no longer have an oppositional charge but have become part of many people’s, not just a minority’s, common sense’ (ibid.). Of course this does not mean that all feminist demands have been met (far from it), and that feminism is now redundant. On the contrary, ‘it suggests that feminism no longer has a simple coherence around a set of easily defined principles . . . but instead is a much richer, more diverse and contradictory mix than it ever was in the 1970s’ (ibid.).
One issue is the identity politics where it's about whether someone is a feminist instead of what is feminism supposed to mean. Many values that were struggled for by feminists have become normative for many who don't think themselves feminists in any sense, basically liberals, which was once radical/revolutionary in regards to women's place in society.
But I strongly agree with you in regards that it's not men vs women but it's not my view that many feminists view the problem in such a way.
Which in part why there are initiatives to engage men in regards to the negative sides of certain gender roles and expectations that in some conditions become obsolete in their social basis.