2 thoughts on “Week 5 Day 1 – Pick a passage!

  • March 8, 2022 at 10:30 am

    A passage from Susan Faludi’s work that stood out to me was, “The U.S. Attorney General’s Commission on Pornography even proposed that women’s professional advancement might be responsible for rising rape rates. With more women in college and at work now, the commission members reasoned in their report, women just have more opportunities to be raped” (4). This passage is just outright ridiculous. The fact that the U.S. Attorney General would blame women for an increase in the number of rape cases is the epitome of misogyny. What is sad is that we still see this today all of the time, where women are afraid to come forward when they have been raped, due to the fear of being blamed or not heard. An entire movement started, the Me Too Movement, to fight against sexual abuse and sexual harassment. The men who are sexually abusing these women in lots of cases hold such high positions of power that they are able to get away with it because women again fear that they would never be believed. The fact that women were blamed for increasing rape numbers is definitely a huge reason why today so many men are able to get away with these horrific crimes. If women were blamed initially from the start, why would people believe them later in the future?

    This passage from Faludi is overall just very sad. Once women start to make gains with their equality, these increases in equality to men now become the only explanation behind why any terrible thing happening to a woman is happening.

  • March 7, 2022 at 4:06 pm

    One particular passage in Katha Pollitt’s “Fetal Rights”: A New Assault on Feminism that stood out to me talked about how duty of care theorists only impose obligations to put the fetus first upon women. There is no duty upon the father or society as a whole, creating a sexist bias surrounding the doctrine of “duty of care”. Pollitt explains how society tends to assume the course of the pregnancy and the health of the fetus rely only on the mother given that she is carrying the child. Pollitt even highlights that “if the mother isn’t to blame, no one is to blame” (297). Once again, our studies show that responsibility and blame primarily fall to women. Placing the blame on the mother is problematic for so many reasons. For starters, it completely erases any external factors that might contribute to the state of the mother (ie financially, socially, culturally, etc.). Women in these situations are likely facing some sort of extenuating circumstance that is often uncontrollable. Additionally, focusing on the mother’s behavior avoids the idea that poor health care services can contribute to these outcomes. It also silences the conversation surrounding men’s responsibility. Pollitt proves that the mother is only half the story. The child also belongs to the father and his health habits play a massive role in determining the quality of his sperm and the course of the pregnancy. It blows my mind that the male counterpart doesn’t have to obey the judge’s orders and doctor’s advice that now is backed by the law, especially in cases like Pamela Rae Stuart’s. One figure that stood out to me was that approximately one in every twelve women is beaten during pregnancy. We don’t know if the effects of this violence cause miscarriages, stillbirths, and damaged newborns, but it could very well play an important part in fetal health. This piece goes to show how deeply rooted the patriarchal system is in our society, how widely accepted misogyny is, and the complicated relationship between women and motherhood.

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