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Member since: Sun Oct 27, 2013, 04:35 PM
Number of posts: 2,083

About Me

Proud philogynist and 5th wave feminist. Vote dem and encourage others to vote dem!

Journal Archives

Less misogyny, more massagyny!

I find that when I treat people as individuals

as not as members of one classification or another, that it makes the world a much simpler place.

Just my 2 cents...

Go Bulls!!!!!

See red!!!

The Survival of the Rapist


When the cook of a primatologist in Indonesia was raped by an orangutan, her husband said it was nothing to be concerned about because the perpetrator wasn't human. This peculiar incident is one of the very few real-life descriptions of rape in ''A Natural History of Rape.'' Strikingly, it is the husband's opinion rather than the victim's that is cited. This is symptomatic: in this book, female and feminist voices are dismissed as ideological; scientists -- like the authors -- engage in the objective search for the truth.

Rape is sexual violence. There is no doubt in my mind that people who try to reduce rape to either sex or violence miss its complexity. By adopting one biased position -- that rape is primarily sexual -- ''A Natural History of Rape'' could be seen as providing a necessary antidote to the other dogmatic position, that it's principally about power. Rape (defined as forced copulation) is mechanically impossible in the absence of male genital arousal. Hence the view of rape as a hate crime pure and simple is silly. A penis is no fist. This doesn't imply, however, that rape rests on natural urges, as Randy Thornhill and Craig T. Palmer want us to believe. As sexually reproducing animals, people have sexual urges. But to say that all men will rape under particular circumstances is like saying that all people will eat human flesh when stranded in the Andes. Even if true, does that make us born cannibals?

In the young tradition of evolutionary psychology, Thornhill, a biologist, and Palmer, an anthropologist, depict rape as a product of Darwinian selection. As a biologist myself, I am prepared to listen. After all, rape can lead directly to gene transmission. But for natural selection to favor rape, rapists would have to differ genetically from nonrapists and need to sow their seed more successfully, so to speak, causing more pregnancies than nonrapists, or at least more than they would without raping. Not a shred of data for these two requirements is presented. The authors believe that information on modern humans would be irrelevant because the only important effects are in our evolutionary past. With this period a firmly closed book, we are left with a storytelling approach in which the usual rules of evidence are suspended.

The authors draw parallels with the scorpion flies studied by Thornhill, which have a physical adaptation for rape. Male scorpion flies have a so-called notal organ, a clamp that serves to keep unwilling females in a mating position. Of course, human males have nothing like it, but perhaps they have other specific ''rape adaptations.'' The authors search for them in human psychology, which unfortunately is not nearly as easy to pick apart as insect anatomy. That men are good at detecting female vulnerability or that young men ejaculate without much delay really doesn't prove much. Detecting vulnerability has to do with judgment of people and situations, a multi-purpose capacity also present in women. And premature ejaculation may simply rest on a combination of high arousal and inexperience. None of the examples of human male psychology comes even close to the scorpion fly's notal organ in proving that men evolved to rape.

I posted this because I think we're mature enough to discuss deep issues here. Ultimately the review dismisses the authors' claims since their is no specific adaptation to prove rape is supported by evolution. I am interested in mature discussion from the community.

The rest of this pretty deep analysis of rape from an evolutionary perspective available here.

Dial up Warnings

Are they still even necessary anymore? Does it even still exist?

Seeing as it is election season-

I find it good exercise to see where I stand with potential candidates, and in general, here.

Where do you stand?

Can Hillary Clinton Count on Women This Time?

by Keli Goff Apr 19, 2014 5:45 am EDT

They famously supported her in 2008—until they helped Obama win Iowa. So will the grandmother-to-be inspire female voters next cycle, or will they judge her on a harsher scale?

The rest here.

Down with patriarchy, and down with extremism

By Brendan McCartney | April 15, 2014

With every major American societal revolution, there have been the conservatives, who advocate for social stability and against assumed “slippery slopes,” and the liberals, who advocate for periodic change and against social stigma. Both conservatives and liberals can be further subdivided into extremists and moderates. During the Civil Rights Movement, for example, Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X would both have been considered socially liberal, yet MLK’s nonviolent marches and speeches must have seemed at odds with Malcolm X’s more polarized ideology, which supported violence in the name of progressivism.

In an Ethics seminar a few weeks ago, my classmates and I discussed the necessity of extremism in progressive movements. The class concluded that both moderates and extremists are necessary for societal change, but with a caveat—while extremists help to shake up a relatively stationary social sphere by bringing issues to public light, moderates can make certain perspectives relatable on a more individualized level. Malcolm X’s more extreme platform made enough headlines to raise awareness for the importance of civil rights, but we remember MLK as the humanitarian leader of the Civil Rights Movement.

It is the trend of American society to battle over these social movements on a generational basis. Each few decades, Americans look back on their ancestors and wonder how in the world people used to endorse slavery, segregate schools and keep the vote from women. And each few decades, we grow up with a new social norm that teaches us we are beyond the faults of our ancestors. These days, social issues are often more intangible than slavery, segregation and disenfranchisement. Progressives now fight against conservatives about the subtle detriments of the patriarchy and white privilege, to provide a few examples. Conservatives often respond to these social critiques by denying their very existence.

Read the rest of this excellent article here.

I'm having a great day!

What kind of day are you having?


Do you consider this to be a sexist term/concept?

I'd especially like to hear from older women on this, seeing as they are most affected.
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