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248 Responses

  1. TMK
    TMK July 10, 2013 at 11:48 am |

    Huh. Interesting.

    As I said, TV serves a purpose – it gives us a safe way to release all of our pent-up aggression.

    I think it doesn’t work that way. Generally, watching agression somewhat increases our own agression, not ‘releases’ it.

    (Although it might absorb your time until the night so you don’t act out on random people instead, i guess)

    Ah well. The level of violence against women in TV slowly rises, as does the number of women protagonists, so i guess eventually it might reach the levels of men victims/villains an we will have the opportunity to watch all that blood and gore in equality paradise :D

    1. Anon21
      Anon21 July 10, 2013 at 12:25 pm |

      I think it doesn’t work that way. Generally, watching agression somewhat increases our own agression, not ‘releases’ it.

      Do you have a source for that? I think I’ve heard this claim made often in the context of violent video games, but the studies I have read about seem to reach ambiguous or contradictory results.

      1. TMK
        TMK July 10, 2013 at 1:37 pm |

        No, sadly. I think i read it in some general psychology book like Aronson one.

        1. Hrovitnir
          Hrovitnir July 10, 2013 at 10:10 pm |

          I would imagine if you have a genuine predisposition toward violence, normalising that violence through a lot of violent media would tend to be a problem.

          But I don’t think there’s anything proving that violent media encourages aggression in general (I certainly could be wrong).

          I do think the saturation of violence in media is not great, but that doesn’t mean that the best solution would be no shows like this at all.

        2. Willemina
          Willemina July 11, 2013 at 12:53 am |

          IIRC there is a statistically significant correlation between playing violent video games and a temporary increase in aggressive behavior. There are also some really boneheaded studies that show that aggressive people prefer violent games and the more you play video games the less productive other areas of your life are.

  2. minuteye
    minuteye July 10, 2013 at 11:49 am |

    Not sure how long she sticks around for (since I haven’t watched every episode yet), but there is a recurring female psychopath character in the British series Luther. Worth checking out.

    1. StevenAttewell
      StevenAttewell July 11, 2013 at 10:51 pm |

      Alice Morgan, as played by Ruth Wilson. Amazing performance and a great role.

    2. M Dubz
      M Dubz July 15, 2013 at 6:25 am |

      And Moriarity on Elementary. Sooooooo good!

  3. A4
    A4 July 10, 2013 at 12:06 pm |

    If you’re going to base an article on personal impressions of the motivations for watching gory TV, I don’t think that is a basis for framing the article as encompassing the motivations of all other people as well.

    When talking about your own experiences, I think there is a rather serviceable pronoun “I” that does not depersonalize personal feelings.

    The truth is, women watch these shows because, just like men, they want to feel like a badass. We live vicariously through the characters. Who among us would actually want to meet a serial killer in real life or watch them brutally slit the throat of an innocent person? Hopefully, none of us would. But for an hour each week, we can imagine that we have the guts necessary to hunt down the next Hannibal Lecter. Or – and this is everyone’s dirty little secret – we can imagine that we are him.

    The truth is, I watch these shows because, just like men, I want to feel like a badass. I live vicariously through the characters. Would I actually want to meet a serial killer in real life or watch them brutally slit the throat of an innocent person? Hopefully, no. But for an hour each week, I can imagine that I have the guts necessary to hunt down the next Hannibal Lecter. Or – and this is my dirty little secret – I can imagine that I am him.

    I think personalizing a subjective perspective allows the audience to relate to me as a person with that perspective. If I pluralize a personal perspective, I assume a particular relation with the reader, and is a more coercive way for me to communicate my point of view.

    1. Donna L
      Donna L July 10, 2013 at 1:37 pm |

      Thank you, A4.

      Or – and this is everyone’s dirty little secret – we can imagine that we are him.

      We want to let our rage surge out of us with a devil may care attitude. We want to exert power and control over others and strike fear into the hearts of our enemies. Deep down, that’s everyone’s biggest fantasy,

      No, actually, it isn’t. I’m sure the writer is being deliberately hyperbolic and knows that what she’s saying isn’t literally so, but I always find that kind of universalization to be incredibly annoying, and unnecessary.

      1. Alexandra
        Alexandra July 10, 2013 at 2:18 pm |

        I agree. Film and television often is quite good at getting the viewer to identify – if only momentarily – with the villain. I feel physically unclean, revolted with myself, after watching grotesque acts of violence where I was meant to identify with the perpetrator. It doesn’t give me an adrenaline rush.

      2. A4
        A4 July 10, 2013 at 2:21 pm |

        Your words echoed in my head while writing this DonnaL, because you were kind enough to explain the same thing to me several times in the past.

      3. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
        The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 10, 2013 at 10:13 pm |

        Thank you, Donna (and A4, above). I couldn’t finish this article, with all that generalising shit.

      4. Computer Soldier Porygon
        Computer Soldier Porygon July 11, 2013 at 3:43 am |

        Definitely. And especially in cop shows – I watch them, yes, because it’s a fantasy. But to harm other people and bring ruin to my enemies and blah blah blah, that’s not MY fantasy. In shows like SVU and whatever, my fantasy is that the cops always care and they (nearly) always catch the bad people.

    2. Nanani
      Nanani July 11, 2013 at 12:59 am |

      Same here. I actively avoid this type of show because I have pretty much the opposite reaction to them. Please don’t erase me.

    3. SamBarge
      SamBarge July 12, 2013 at 6:13 pm |

      Exactly. I don’t know where the author got the idea that “everyone” wants to be the serial killer.

      I love these types of shows and pretty much any book that starts with a dead body and a bunch of clues. That’s because I love to unravel a puzzle, not because I get off on dead bodies or wish I could decide who would live or die.

      Annoyed.

  4. Canisse
    Canisse July 10, 2013 at 12:39 pm |

    I agree, and I would extend this to books, as well. You can find action/adventure books with female heroes (they do tend to be marketed towards women, but they exist).
    Female villains? Now, that’s another story. Because a woman can be a plucky young hero with more luck than wit, but the big bad? Let’s get real! No way a woman could be powerful and scary enough.
    Give us a female Voldemort, I say!
    (This said, I loved Belatrix Lestrange, but she was only a lieutenant, so not good enough for me.)

    1. Andie
      Andie July 10, 2013 at 6:33 pm |

      Shout out to queen bavmorda, from willow.

      1. thinksnake
        thinksnake July 10, 2013 at 8:55 pm |

        Well, that’s getting into the evil witch trope, which is a whole nother thing with its own set of highly problematic material…

    2. MissWhich
      MissWhich July 12, 2013 at 9:10 am |

      No. There are many, many stories with female villains. See: a huge number of fairy tales (think versions of Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Hansel and Gretel- some of this female villains are supernatural/ witches and some are not) and books by awesome female writers like Catherynne Valente, Patricia McKillip, Robin McKinley, Cassandra Clare, etc.

    3. SamBarge
      SamBarge July 12, 2013 at 6:23 pm |

      Actually, for a specifically female serial killer villain, check out Lawrence Sanders’s novel The Third Deadly Sin, published in 1984.

      One book does not counter the argument of the author; it’s just a decent book as is the Deadly Sin series.

      Also, I always assumed that there were so few female serial killers in fiction because the FBI profilers who first described the phenomenon initially didn’t believe that women could be serial killers. The guy who founded the Behavioural Analysis Unit (Douglas, I think) initially didn’t think women could be sociopaths/psychopaths at all.

    4. Kirelia
      Kirelia July 13, 2013 at 10:26 am |

      The Shadowspawn books by S.M. Stirling feature a really terrifying female villain.

  5. Brennan
    Brennan July 10, 2013 at 1:16 pm |

    Um, the second season of Dexter was not about Dexter hunting down a serial killer who targeted prostitutes and random women. It was actually about the exact opposite of that.

    SPOILERS AHEAD

    That was the season when the target of the major serial killer investigation was “the Bay Harbor Butcher”–Dexter himself. The major conflict mostly involved Doakes and his investigation of Dexter. The “villain,” (though this term gets a little complicated for this season) was Lila, and while she only gets the chance to kill one person (a man, incidentally), it’s implied that she had the potential to become a serial killer and would have “become” Dexter if he hadn’t killed her before she got that far.

    I haven’t seen the entire series (maybe you were thinking of the third season?), but I found it a little odd that you mentioned S2 to support your point when S2 actually provides very strong contradictory evidence.

    1. Christina Paschyn
      Christina Paschyn July 10, 2013 at 6:42 pm |

      Hi Brennan, yes, thank you for catching that. I was confusing my seasons. I will correct that on my site.

      1. Christina Paschyn
        Christina Paschyn July 10, 2013 at 7:11 pm |

        And FYI, I had been thinking of the first and fourth seasons. It was in the latter where we saw Lithgow’s character kill the woman in the bathtub and the mother of two.

        1. Christina Paschyn
          Christina Paschyn July 10, 2013 at 7:14 pm |

          And as a side note, I never saw Lila as being remotely comparable or equivalent to Dexter.

        2. Christina Paschyn
          Christina Paschyn July 10, 2013 at 7:18 pm |

          Also, I never saw Lila as being comparable or remotely equivalent to Dexter

        3. Christina Paschyn
          Christina Paschyn July 10, 2013 at 10:40 pm |

          Oh, and let’s not forget about the fifth season, which introduced us to a serial killer group dedicated to raping and murdering women.

          But my point extends beyond Dexter and includes the preponderance of female victims on other popular serial killers shows, listed in my post above.

    2. NNS
      NNS July 10, 2013 at 6:43 pm |

      I don’t think the author said that specifically about season 2. Also, Lithgow’s character does kill seemingly random women!

      1. NNS
        NNS July 10, 2013 at 6:44 pm |

        Actually my bad, I think thats referencing Season 4.

    3. Computer Soldier Porygon
      Computer Soldier Porygon July 11, 2013 at 3:45 am |

      Oh, and let’s not forget about the fifth season, which introduced us to a serial killer group dedicated to raping and murdering women.

      Well, yes, let’s not forget about the fifth season – which introduced us to a serial killer group decidated to raping and murdering women. And one of their (lady-type) victims, who gets catharsis/heals by, uh, murdering all of them.

      1. LI
        LI July 11, 2013 at 8:29 am |

        Yes, but the fifth season’s Lumen wasn’t a serial killer. Nor did she end up being a recurring character. She also heavily depended on Dexter to rescue and help her. I don’t know, her storyline wasn’t all that empowering for me.

        1. LI
          LI July 11, 2013 at 10:02 am |

          Plus, she disappeared after the 5th season and she stopped killing after she got HER revenge. She doesn’t keep on fighting to avenge OTHER women victims. It’s all very individual. Maybe I would appreciate her more if she got her own spinoff and we saw whether she keeps going after other women-hating men.

        2. LI
          LI July 11, 2013 at 10:16 am |

          Maybe that proves audiences can only handle images of women committing violence against men in small doses? I doubt Lumen would ever get her own show.

        3. Computer Soldier Porygon
          Computer Soldier Porygon July 11, 2013 at 10:05 pm |

          I’m honestly not even a Dexter fan (I did enjoy that season though), I just think it’s dumb to talk about the plot of the 5th season without mentioning Lumen

  6. WertherEffekt
    WertherEffekt July 10, 2013 at 1:34 pm |

    So I ask again, why can’t we have a female Dexter on TV?

    I think it’s because the vast majority of female serial killers (in the popular FBI sense) don’t kill in ways that make for exciting television. They tend to take caregiver roles and they usually kill by poison or suffocation. Very occasionally you get ‘black widows’, but again, they aren’t showy. Aileen Wuornos stood out just because she was so different from the norm. If our fictions spring from real life, then there is slightly less to work with, as inspirations go. It’s also true that most male serial killers aren’t as clever as the ones on TV, so I agree that there is room to take creative license.

    Stories you might like:
    The novel “Portrait of the Psychopath as a Young Woman” by Edward Lee and Elizabeth Steffen seems closest to what you’re talking about plot-wise for a female Dexter (except in the book the killer is obviously mentally ill). “Ms .45″ is a film from 1981 about a woman who becomes a spree killer after being raped. The story examines the casual misogyny all around the protagonist and she doesn’t limit her revenge to her actual attacker. “Serial Mom”, while comedic, does feature a woman motivated to kill the rude.

    1. Niall
      Niall July 10, 2013 at 4:44 pm |

      Stories you might like:
      The novel “Portrait of the Psychopath as a Young Woman” by Edward Lee and Elizabeth Steffen seems closest to what you’re talking about plot-wise for a female Dexter (except in the book the killer is obviously mentally ill). “Ms .45″ is a film from 1981 about a woman who becomes a spree killer after being raped. The story examines the casual misogyny all around the protagonist and she doesn’t limit her revenge to her actual attacker.

      Some years after the Montreal massacre in 1989, I came up with a fragment of a plot; a speculative “what if” type scenario involving a female counterpart to Marc Lepine. Of course the major difference would be that unlike Lepine’s perceived ruination of his life by women/feminism (which were just a product of his twisted psyche), this female character has suffered real harm and damage by men in her life and the system of patriarchy. Consequently, she goes on a shooting spree in a space that for her represents the essence of patriarchal culture – ie a sports bar, a frat party, strip club etc. Killing and wounding several men before turning the gun on herself, leaving a letter explaining her actions and how the patriarchy and men in particular drove her to this…and the larger cultural debate or fallout that ensues.

      I’ve never seriously attempted to write it, because of it’s controversy. But to me, it’s neither far fetched nor a totally unbelievable premise for a story, given the reality of both patriarchy and post modern cultural reality.

    2. Tim
      Tim July 10, 2013 at 5:38 pm |

      My partner and I have been watching (re-watching, in my case) I Claudius this week. If you want a female serial killer, you couldn’t do much better than Livia. That show was hugely popular in its time, and has held up well over the years, and the performance of Sian Phillips was a big part of that. I’ve got the Acorn 35th anniversary release box set from last year, $30 from Barnes & Noble.

      1. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
        The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 11, 2013 at 12:06 am |

        Bearing in mind, of course, that it’s based on every last bit of Roman gossip or innuendo, rather than convincing history. In other words, great fiction, yes – a portrait of the real Livia, no.

        (I loved the series, but I’m always squicked out by how historical fiction trashes people’s reputations.)

        1. Tim
          Tim July 11, 2013 at 2:18 pm |

          Yes, absolutely good point. People should watch it, if they do watch it, with full knowledge that it is a freely fictionalized account of historical figures. I’m reading the show (haven’t read the book) to be rather satirical; there are a lot of parallels to what is going on in the USA today, or maybe I’m just reading those into it.

          Julia (the Elder) is another character in IC that suffers this treatment — unfortunately, but not surprisingly to anyone on this blog, that often happens to women historical figures in fictional works. Lucretia Borgia is perhaps the most famous and egregious example. Anyway about Julia: the other night, I was watching a very interesting program the other night about the archaeological excavations on Ventotene (ancient name Pandateria) where Julia was exiled. One of the interviewees was Annelise Freisenbruch, who wrote a book titled First Ladies of Rome. (another book I’ve got to add to my wish list — sigh, so many books, so little time) She said that it was much more likely that Julia was involved in some political intrigue and that the charge of adultery was just a cover.

        2. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
          The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 11, 2013 at 9:55 pm |

          So with you about Lucretia Borgia. Her bad reputation’s made of whole cloth.

          I hadn’t known about Julia the Elder and the adultery charge likely being a cover until yesterday – I was pleased to see Wikipedia’s caught up with that, too. :)

          Another woman whose reputation comes almost entirely from her enemies is Marie Antoinette. The “let them eat cake” story was invented by Rousseau, iirc, and wasn’t even about her: it was about Marie Terese, Louis XIV’s first wife. (Charming of Rousseau to make up crap about someone dead a century, if he did it.) So far from being the Rich Bimbo (not to mention Evil Lesbian Harlot) her enemies made out, Marie Antoinette gave away plenty of her household money to charity, so much so that there’s a letter – genuine, afaik – where she’s telling her daughter there’ll be no Christmas presents that year, because mama’s spare money has gone to people who need food.

          One of many reasons I do not like Bastille Day …

  7. taz
    taz July 10, 2013 at 1:43 pm |

    Hm! I loved the movie the long kiss goodnight. However, I do agree with you about the killer shows and movies. Most of them have male leads and kill more women the men. But, I don’t agree with you about books. Karen Chances books, Mike Shepherds Kris Longknive series, J.R. Rains Samantha Moon Series and Mercedes Lackey all have good strong female leads! It would be nice if Hollywood would look at these books and then make a movie or several from them. Instead of rehashing story lines from before I was born. It seems like all they do nowdays is reuse story lines from before instead of getting new ones! It would be nice to see it from the other side with new story lines.

  8. LotusBecca
    LotusBecca July 10, 2013 at 1:54 pm |

    As I said, TV serves a purpose – it gives us a safe way to release all of our pent-up aggression.

    I don’t agree that this is a positive thing. We don’t need more women “safely” releasing our pent-up aggression. In my opinion, what we do need (among other things) is more women organizing to “collectively revolt and kill men.” We need our aggression for us to destroy patriarchy; we don’t need to release it in innocuous ways that leave the power structure unscathed. But with your caveats about not hating men (although honestly, why shouldn’t we hate men, given the patriarchal society we live in and how murderous it is toward women?), you seem to indicate you’re more interested in symbolic representations of aggressively confronting male misogyny than actually aggressively confronting male misogyny.

    1. Alexandra
      Alexandra July 10, 2013 at 2:16 pm |

      We shouldn’t “revolt and kill men,” we shouldn’t “hate men”, because “men” is a category comprising half the human race and it is ridiculous and obviously false to assume that every person who falls into a category that broad is worthy of hatred, or of killing. I mean, come on, there are men who comment here and blog here at Feministe.

      Am I misunderstanding you?

      1. Anon21
        Anon21 July 10, 2013 at 2:21 pm |

        Yeah, the use of quotation marks around “collectively revolt and kill men” is confusing. I hope that means it’s some sort of joke in poor taste, and not a serious suggestion?

      2. LotusBecca
        LotusBecca July 11, 2013 at 3:27 am |

        Like pretty much everyone here, you read the word “every” into my comment even though it wasn’t there. I’m not surprised. Expressing intense hostility to people in privileged groups is seldom looked favorably upon. No feminist will ever be taken seriously in the mainstream, not even in the leftist mainstream, unless she goes to great pains to establish that she does not experience any significant “hatred” toward men.

        But the reality is every liberation movement that has achieved any great measure of success has (to some extent) involved killing people. It’s not the only useful tactic out there, but it’s something that winds up happening during a period of intense social upheaval. We live in a violent society. When men stop murdering women, then I will stop advocating that women should forcibly defend ourselves against male violence.

        1. A4
          A4 July 11, 2013 at 9:03 am |

          So LotusBecca, who will you be killing first? How will you be channelling your aggression towards real world violence that dismantles patriarchy?

          Surely you are not just someone who just thinks it’s exciting and edgy to advocate for liberational murder on the internet. That would be pathetic and mundane.

          I can understand not wanting to discuss the particulars of your violent crimes on the internet, so I ask only for hypotheticals.

          Hypothetically speaking, who might you target for assassination? Or will the murder be left to those other people and you will simply advocate for them? Perhaps you will make a sign and stand next to busy roads?

        2. Anon21
          Anon21 July 11, 2013 at 9:42 am |

          Allow me to suggest that when “pretty much everyone” misunderstands what you are trying to say, the fault lies in the way you expressed yourself, not ten other people’s reading skills.

        3. Alexandra
          Alexandra July 11, 2013 at 10:14 am |

          This whole thread is a hot mess. I agree with A4. I can’t tell whether you’re just being an internet tough guy or whether you’re serious; I hope to god it’s the former because it scares me that there are people walking around spouting this sort of bullshit about how all manner of violence is justified come the revolution.

          You know what, LotusBecca? It’s true that violence is often a part of legitimate political struggle. There have been plenty of revolutionaries, whom I admire, who committed acts of violence (including less than admirable acts of violence). But you haven’t earned the kind of violence you’re advocating. You have articulated no theory under which such violence would be justified, except for vague handwaving about self defense or political struggle. I’m with A4: I’d like to see you name the people, the individual human beings, whom you think we all ought to get together and assassinate. If you can’t do that, then all I can conclude is that you’re mouthing off in a thoughtless and irresponsible way on the internet. Which I hope to god is the truth.

        4. LotusBecca
          LotusBecca July 11, 2013 at 4:09 pm |

          I’m with A4: I’d like to see you name the people, the individual human beings, whom you think we all ought to get together and assassinate.

          LOL. Are you kidding me? You want me to call for assassinations of individual human beings on a internet blog open to the public (and to the NSA)? Are you being for real? Uhhh sorry. . .I actually take politics seriously.

          There’s nothing particularly unique about advocating for violence (in a general sense) as a useful political tactic. It happens all the time in many different types of radical spaces, and it has happened for thousands of years. Perhaps you need to get out more.

          And no, you have no idea who I am, and I’m not obligated to post a 100 page theoretical political manifesto before I write a four sentence comment on a blog (my initial comment). If people feel free to casually mouth off about their pro-men, liberal political opinions, then I’m going to also casually mouth off about my critical-of-men, revolutionary political opinions. Don’t presume this means I’m not serious or committed or haven’t thought this stuff through in real life.

          Finally, you must be very privileged if you are scared of the thought that people as powerless and harmless as me exist. I have actual oppression and actual violence to worry about, and I can’t get too worked up about the cooked-up “risks” that political dissidents pose in the minds of the FBI, MRAs, Republicans, and people who think like them.

        5. macavitykitsune
          macavitykitsune July 11, 2013 at 4:19 pm |

          If people feel free to casually mouth off about their pro-men, liberal political opinions, then I’m going to also casually mouth off about my critical-of-men, revolutionary political opinions.

          Phwee. Saying all men shouldn’t be randomly killed is being “pro-man”? I guess your definition of “transphobic feminist” is now officially only restricted to Janice Raymond and a couple of religious fundamentalists? Since, you know, someone who thinks you’re a fake and a “man” and a “rapist just by existing”, but who doesn’t actively advocate the murder of all trans women, is “pro-trans women” now, by that definition.

          Don’t presume this means I’m not serious or committed or haven’t thought this stuff through in real life.

          Well, I was giving you the benefit of the doubt, but if you’ve thought things through and this is what you arrived at, you’re being willfully blinkered and shallow-minded, and that’s pretty much all there is to it.

          Also, any time you want to work with “real oppression”, I’ll take an apology from you for whitesplaining repeatedly to me and amblingalong on this/other threads. Thanks.

        6. LotusBecca
          LotusBecca July 15, 2013 at 4:17 pm |

          Also, any time you want to work with “real oppression”, I’ll take an apology from you for whitesplaining repeatedly to me and amblingalong on this/other threads. Thanks.

          I apologize for repeatedly whitesplaining to you and amblingalong on this and other threads. When I implied that you and he were opposed to POC defending yourselves against white violence I didn’t view it as an insult. A lot of POC activists whom I personally admire, like Gandhi and Martin Luther King, were entirely pacifistic even in regards to self-defense (as you obviously already know about them). This pacifistic approach isn’t something that I as a woman take in my feminism. . .but I don’t believe it’s my place to judge the tactics that people who are oppressed in ways I’m not take to their liberation struggles. So I’m fine with POC pacifists. But intention isn’t magic. My assumption that you were against violent self-defense was inaccurate, and you viewed it as an insult. And so, for all intents and purposes, it WAS an insult. I need to be more careful about the assumptions I make about you in the future. I know there have been several other times when you called me out for being racist on here, and I think you’ve raised legitimate points when you’ve done that. It’s very possible there’s other times I’ve been racist, too, and you haven’t had the spoons to call me on it. I’m sorry for that, and I think any time I’m being racist or whitesplaining that’s messed up, and I should know better by now.

    2. TMK
      TMK July 10, 2013 at 2:19 pm |

      what we do need (among other things) is more women organizing to “collectively revolt and kill men.”

      I literally facepalmed.

    3. A4
      A4 July 10, 2013 at 2:26 pm |

      Will you be establishing objective criteria for identifying who is a man and therefore deserving of murder, or will you simply kill all the self-identified men?

      1. LotusBecca
        LotusBecca July 11, 2013 at 5:06 am |

        Will you be establishing objective criteria for identifying who is a man and therefore deserving of murder, or will you simply kill all the self-identified men?

        The word “all” is nowhere in what I wrote. Obviously I’m not arguing in favor of a genocide of all men. What a ridiculous question.

        Furthermore, I find your question offensive, given who you are (cis, if I remember correctly) and given who I am. I’m not sure if you’ve forgotten this, but I’m trans. Please don’t snarkily talk to me about “objective criteria about determining who is a man.” I know all about such objective criteria. I’m not sure if you’re consciously trying to say “you’re a trans woman! you’re such a hypocrite for talking this way!” but I don’t particularly appreciate a cis person condescending to me about the contradictions of gender and gender identification.

        1. Marcie
          Marcie July 11, 2013 at 7:56 am |

          So you’re not only giving ammunition to MRAs but also anti-trans folk?
          Good work.

    4. tinfoil hattie
      tinfoil hattie July 10, 2013 at 2:31 pm |

      Ha-ha, I TOTALLY get what you’re saying, LotusBecca. What a surprise.

      I love the shocked reactions of the readers who live in a world in which raping, mutilating, slicing, torturing, and killing women is not only TV’s largest form of entertainment, but also the reality in which women live, worldwide, every day. Yawn. But – kill MEN! What? How dare you suggest such a thing! Why, some men read this very blog!

      The willful blindness is stunning.

      1. Jill
        Jill July 10, 2013 at 2:56 pm | *

        It’s not “willful blindness.” It’s recognizing that the solution to the terrible things women endure is not to suggest that we should increase the levels at which men endure those things.

        1. LotusBecca
          LotusBecca July 11, 2013 at 3:45 am |

          Power exists. Men have power over women and already use violence against women all the time. And the way you confront power is not by politely ersuading it to be nicer to you but by fighting back against it, through violence when necessary. Patriarchy will not end unless women give ourselves license to defend ourselves against our oppressors. To draw an analogy, pretty much every country that white people colonized was only able to kick those white people out after a certain degree of bloodshed. In a similar way, men will not willingly step down from their dominant position in society. For patriarchy to be abolished, a certain degree of bloodshed will need to occur.

        2. amblingalong
          amblingalong July 11, 2013 at 10:46 am |

          First of all, I’m not sure how old you are, but there have a been some pretty radical shifts in our society over the last few decades- shifts that were essentially violence free. If you really believe violence is required to end kyriarchy, I’m not sure how you can explain all the various violence-free ways that kyriarchy has been weakened (from the big historical stuff like voting rights down to societal shifts like changing attitudes towards gay people). There’s a painful amount of shit left to deal with, but we’ve taken some small steps- and other countries have taken larger steps- and they’ve largely been accomplished through coalition building, protest, political activism, negotiation, etc., not by assassinating pro-life Senators.

        3. amblingalong
          amblingalong July 11, 2013 at 12:06 pm |

          Incidentally, that should read “violence free on the part of the people working to improve things.” Obviously there was/is a shit ton of violence directed at the oppressed groups.

        4. LotusBecca
          LotusBecca July 11, 2013 at 4:16 pm |

          There was plenty of violent resistance, especially in the 60s and the 70s, but more recently as well. Most of the progressive changes that happened wouldn’t have happened without the violent resistance, in my opinion. I’m not saying violence is the answer; it’s part of the answer.

        5. Jill
          Jill July 11, 2013 at 4:26 pm | *

          And I’m saying, advocating for violence violates our comment policy.

        6. Jill
          Jill July 11, 2013 at 4:44 pm | *

          Just as a heads up, I’m putting LotusBecca on mod.

        7. tigtog
          tigtog July 11, 2013 at 5:42 pm | *

          Just popping up a preemptive clarification to Jill’s heads up, because I’ve seen this misunderstanding come up over and over on different blogs – “putting X on mod” does not mean that they are barred from commenting or that their submitted comments will be automatically deleted. It means that “auto-modded” comments are filtered into the moderator approval queue rather than appearing immediately on the blog – so a better term for how it works is “pre-moderation”.

          If LotusBecca wants to continue arguing her stance while eschewing the advocacy of violence against others, comments abiding by these guidelines (and other Feministe guidelines) will be published once a moderator is able to examine the moderation queue.

      2. Anon21
        Anon21 July 10, 2013 at 3:49 pm |

        But – kill MEN! What? How dare you suggest such a thing!

        Well, yes. Key word suggest, as in advocate, that people should commit violence against men. Who do you see coming in here and advocating that people commit violence against women and getting a yawn in response? And if the answer is “no one,” where did your supposed double standard just go?

        1. tinffoil hattie
          tinffoil hattie July 10, 2013 at 4:01 pm |

          Mindlessly watching TV shows and paying money for movies that objectify women and glorify violence against us is tacit advocacy of same, whether you’d like to believe it or not.

        2. Anon21
          Anon21 July 10, 2013 at 4:18 pm |

          Mindlessly watching TV shows and paying money for movies that objectify women and glorify violence against us is tacit advocacy of same, whether you’d like to believe it or not.

          Well, watching TV shows and paying money for movies are not things that people do through the medium of Feministe. If you’re specifically referring to the OP, I think it’s pretty clear that she is mindful about the way she consumes media depicting violence against women, even if you don’t agree with her ultimate conclusion that what’s needed is more balance in terms of the kinds of perpetrators and victims depicted.

          Again, I don’t see the double standard you seemed to imply in your first comment. Who out of the people upbraiding LotusBecca for advocating indiscriminate violence against men is being “willfully blind” to the problem of violence against women in media?

        3. amblingalong@gmail
          amblingalong@gmail July 10, 2013 at 4:36 pm |

          Mindlessly watching TV shows and paying money for movies that objectify women and glorify violence against us is tacit advocacy of same, whether you’d like to believe it or not.

          OK, so to repeat the question- who here is advocating mindlessly watching TV shows that objectify women or glorify violence against them?

        4. macavitykitsune
          macavitykitsune July 10, 2013 at 5:26 pm |

          Mindlessly watching TV shows and paying money for movies that objectify women and glorify violence against us is tacit advocacy of same,

          Considering my current show of choice is Shingeki no Kyojin, I am currently tacitly advocating the near-extinction of the human race by giant junkless human-eating Eldritch Abominations.

          ….I’m weirdly comfortable with that.

          So, if I understand your attitude correctly, it is correct and appropriate to advocate the murder of 49% of the humans on this planet for their oppressive actions. And yet, if I were to say that I want you dead for being straight, white and more cisgender and abled than I am, I imagine that would bother you a little? Or is (assigned) gender the only oppressive axis worth committing genocide for in your opinion? Very curious to know your reasoning, since I personally feel less oppressed by men as a (perceived cis) woman than by cishets as a non-straight genderqueer person.

        5. tinffoil hattie
          tinffoil hattie July 10, 2013 at 7:36 pm |

          I believe that is exactly what the author is suggesting, but in “fantasy.” Her entire post laments the dearth in “The entertainment” of women who kill scores of men

        6. Chataya
          Chataya July 10, 2013 at 8:03 pm |

          @mac
          That’s okay, I plan on spending this weekend advocating the near-extinction of the human race by giant dimension-hopping monsters who then get punched by giant robots.

        7. macavitykitsune
          macavitykitsune July 10, 2013 at 8:24 pm |

          Sounds fun, Chataya. I’ll bite; what show is it?

        8. Librarygoose
          Librarygoose July 10, 2013 at 10:24 pm |

          Maybe Chataya is talking about Pacific Rim? New movie about alien-punching giant robots.

        9. Chataya
          Chataya July 10, 2013 at 10:42 pm |

          @mac
          Librarygoose got it, Pacific Rim.

        10. Willemina
          Willemina July 11, 2013 at 1:02 am |

          alien-punching giant robots

          Driven by Idris Elba!

        11. macavitykitsune
          macavitykitsune July 11, 2013 at 1:17 am |

          alien-punching giant robots

          Driven by Idris Elba!

          Somewhere out there is a very happy person with a really specific fetish they never thought would come true on the big screen…

          Ah, Idris Elba. ♥

        12. Willemina
          Willemina July 11, 2013 at 1:54 am |

          I’m half-way curious to do a rule 34 investigation of that mac.

          While we’re on the subject of blockbusters none of us will see since we comment on this blog, I want 1000% more Heimdall in Thor 2. My skating rink for winter will be made of the tears of white supremacists everywhere.

        13. macavitykitsune
          macavitykitsune July 11, 2013 at 10:41 am |

          I want 1000% more Heimdall in Thor 2. My skating rink for winter will be made of the tears of white supremacists everywhere.

          I LOLed out loud, Willemina.

          (off-topic: really love your name! I remember reading it in a book, though spelled with an H, and making squee noises about how pretty it was….)

        14. Ally S
          Ally S July 11, 2013 at 10:46 am |

          Seconding Mac on your name, Willemina. ^_^

    5. amblingalong@gmail
      amblingalong@gmail July 10, 2013 at 4:34 pm |

      If we’re killing men because patriarchy, we can kill white people because racism, right? And straight people because heteronormativity, and trans people because cissexism, and able-bodied people because ableism?

      I’m just curious, LotusBecca, how many people you think will be left alive after we purge everyone who holds any privilege.

      My guess is zero.

      1. macavitykitsune
        macavitykitsune July 10, 2013 at 5:28 pm |

        Heh, I should have scrolled. MTE; where does the murder advocacy end? I’m visualising some sort of Hunger Games dealie. I’m a genderqueer bisexual disabled non-neurotypical low-income WOC, so I’d probably survive the heats, but I suppose I’d get knocked out at the finals for being high-caste and having educational privilege…

        Oppression Death Olympics, woohoo!

        1. PM
          PM July 10, 2013 at 6:59 pm |

          Ahhhh, this made me smile. Thank you.

      2. LotusBecca
        LotusBecca July 11, 2013 at 3:53 am |

        If we’re killing men because patriarchy, we can kill white people because racism, right? And straight people because heteronormativity, and trans people because cissexism, and able-bodied people because ableism?

        Right. I support the ideas of Malcolm X and the Black Panthers. I support people of color killing whites to defend themselves when this becomes necessary. I also support the ideas of the Bash Back movement. I support queer folks killing straights to defend ourselves when this becomes necessary. See also: CeCe McDonald, a person who if I recall correctly, amblingalong, you had a problem with, but who in my mind is a hero.

        1. Marcie
          Marcie July 11, 2013 at 8:03 am |

          Patriarchy is a ploy of all men to supress/enslave/kill all women.
          So every man would be a legitimate target for self defence?
          Just to make sure I didn’t misunderstand.

        2. amblingalong
          amblingalong July 11, 2013 at 10:31 am |

          Right. I support the ideas of Malcolm X and the Black Panthers. I support people of color killing whites to defend themselves when this becomes necessary.

          You are doing some major goalpost moving by suddenly reducing your position to ‘killing when necessary for self-defense.” I mean, I support that in general, regardless of social groups. But that’s not what you initially said.

        3. macavitykitsune
          macavitykitsune July 11, 2013 at 10:44 am |

          You are doing some major goalpost moving by suddenly reducing your position to ‘killing when necessary for self-defense.” I mean, I support that in general, regardless of social groups. But that’s not what you initially said.

          Word. Becca, your initial comment made NO reference to self-defense, and it’s pretty insulting that you’re stating that POC on this thread (you do remember that amblingalong and I are not white) are recommending that POC not defend themselves against murderous white people, when we really said that we don’t think it’s moral to kill white people indiscriminately.

        4. Safiya Outlines
          Safiya Outlines July 11, 2013 at 3:44 pm |

          I cannot, cannot abide people far removed from what violence, particularly widespread violence brings, so casually advocating it.

          I used to live in Northern Ireland, where people were killed for various causes. It was shit. Not “cleansing, purifying violence” but a disgusting and shoddy waste of human life, both the killers and of those they killed. *

          I currently have family living in Syria. Do you think they feel Syria is a better country for having 100,000 dead people in it? Short answer – no.

          I know, I’m probably spoiling your fun with my non USian examples. Boo hoo.

          *USian people – please do not start pontificating on Northern Irish politics and how you feel that it was fine and dandy for some people to die, just no.

        5. Jill
          Jill July 11, 2013 at 3:52 pm | *

          I put this warning at the bottom of the thread, but putting it here too: Just a reminder that advocating violence and murder really violate Feministe’s commenting policy. Future comments that promote violence or murder will be deleted and the user banned.

        6. macavitykitsune
          macavitykitsune July 11, 2013 at 3:53 pm |

          I cannot, cannot abide people far removed from what violence, particularly widespread violence brings, so casually advocating it.

          No shit, and word to everything you said, Safiya. And seconding the “plz not talk about N. Ireland”; I remember how the last thread on the place went down.

    6. DouglasG
      DouglasG July 10, 2013 at 7:37 pm |

      I can agree that some people almost deserve to be murdered, and can likely be persuaded to drop the almost, but cannot approve of the effect that committing the murder has on the character of the murderer.

    7. pheenobarbidoll
      pheenobarbidoll July 10, 2013 at 8:05 pm |

      Kinda think she’s talking about tv shows should have women collectively revolting and killing men instead of symbolically destroying men. As the plot.

      1. Anon21
        Anon21 July 10, 2013 at 8:09 pm |

        You think that LotusBecca is just talking about the need for more cultural representations of women collectively perpetrating violence against men? I don’t see that as the most natural reading of her post, especially given the last part about rejecting “symbolic representations” of female violence in favor of “actually aggressively confronting male misogyny.”

        1. pheenobarbidoll
          pheenobarbidoll July 10, 2013 at 8:33 pm |

          How many shows do you know of portray women aggressively confronting male misogyny or revolting and rising en masse to kill men ? I can’t think of any off the top of my head. Personally I’d have liked Thelma and Louise much more had they run over the men chasing them instead of driving off the cliff.

        2. LotusBecca
          LotusBecca July 11, 2013 at 4:09 am |

          I appreciate your sympathetic interpretation of what I said, pheeno, but Anon21 is closer to identifying my actual meaning. Although your idea of TV shows where women collectively revolt and kill men sounds great.

          I’m not advocating genocide of all men. I’m not advocating hate crimes where men are killed just for being men. Obviously. And even if I were advocating such things (which I’m not. Obviously.) there is no way such things would ever happen. To imagine such things are in any way even remotely possible enough to be worried about frankly strikes me as to sinking into MRA land.

          What I was talking about is women collectively revolting and killing men particularly implicated in the functioning of patriarchy (again this would be obvious to anyone who has an understanding of how politics actually works). Perhaps this would include killing rapists; perhaps this would include assassinating certain government officials. What I’m talking about is supporting the real things that happen in the real world when oppressed people try to defend themselves. Life isn’t a fairy tale. Women don’t need to purge themselves of aggressive impulses by watching serial killers on television. We need to channel our aggressive impulses into social action so that we can have a world where we won’t have to feel aggressive anymore. To accomplish this, I support marches; I support boycotts; I support strikes; I support civil disobedience; I support acts of sabotage; and yes, I even support killing men in certain circumstances. Apparently this scandalizes all of your very refined liberal, peaceful, pro-men sensibilities.

        3. macavitykitsune
          macavitykitsune July 11, 2013 at 10:47 am |

          To accomplish this, I support marches; I support boycotts; I support strikes; I support civil disobedience; I support acts of sabotage; and yes, I even support killing men in certain circumstances. Apparently this scandalizes all of your very refined liberal, peaceful, pro-men sensibilities.

          It doesn’t scandalize anything of mine. Nor would it have, if that had been remotely what you said.

      2. Donna L
        Donna L July 10, 2013 at 8:30 pm |

        That’s an extremely strained reading, Pheeno. I just don’t buy it.

        Becca, your comment would fit right in at gendertrender, if it weren’t for, you know, one thing. If something I were advocating dovetailed so well with the views of people like that, it might give me pause.

        1. pheenobarbidoll
          pheenobarbidoll July 10, 2013 at 8:36 pm |

          I dunno, I could very well be wrong but I was reading it in the context of tv shows and female characters.

        2. amblingalong
          amblingalong July 11, 2013 at 3:05 am |

          I dunno, I could very well be wrong but I was reading it in the context of tv shows and female characters.

          Pretty sure Becca specifically said that wasn’t the case here:

          you seem to indicate you’re more interested in symbolic representations of aggressively confronting male misogyny than actually aggressively confronting male misogyny.

          Emphasis mine.

        3. LotusBecca
          LotusBecca July 11, 2013 at 4:22 am |

          Donna, my view on GenderTrender is that even a broken clock is right two times a day.

          I choose my political positions based off what my logic, intuition, and life experience tells me will be the most effective in creating a just, free, equal society. I don’t choose my political positions so that they are the exact opposite of whatever people on GenderTrender think, as much as I despise most of them and their transmisogynistic bigotry.

        4. pheenobarbidoll
          pheenobarbidoll July 11, 2013 at 1:02 pm |

          Pretty sure Becca specifically said that wasn’t the case here:

          I had read it in the context of TV and characters. That’s where I was bopping along thinking the whole thread was about so that’s how I read it. Instead of watching women symbolically destroy “the system” on TV, watch them actually aggressively confront misogyny.

          The abrupt shift from TV to real life wasn’t caught.

      3. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
        The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 11, 2013 at 3:59 am |

        Given LotusBecca’s comment:

        Right. I support the ideas of Malcolm X and the Black Panthers. I support people of color killing whites to defend themselves when this becomes necessary. I also support the ideas of the Bash Back movement. I support queer folks killing straights to defend ourselves when this becomes necessary. See also: CeCe McDonald, a person who if I recall correctly, amblingalong, you had a problem with, but who in my mind is a hero.

        she doesn’t seem to be talking about TV shows, and unless she’s had a bad case of Sarcasm In-joke Fail, she seems to be saying killing is fine. Not sure why it has to be specified about what groups are okay for this; isn’t killing as a desperate measure in self-defence the generally accepted idea anyway? Though I’m none too sure what level of “becomes necessary” is involved here.

    8. Ally S
      Ally S July 10, 2013 at 9:13 pm |

      why shouldn’t we hate men, given the patriarchal society we live in and how murderous it is toward women?

      Because the patriarchy is a power structure that oppresses women, not a synonym for “men.” I wouldn’t call it very anarchistic to say that men as a group deserve hatred. But that’s just me.

      Pardon me if somehow you didn’t mean to say that hating men as a group is acceptable, but that was very disappointing to hear from you in any case.

      1. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
        The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 11, 2013 at 4:02 am |

        Not to mention that patriarchy can be pretty bloody murderous to the “wrong” sort of men, too – though given LotusBecca’s comment about “queer folk killing straights” maybe gay or bi men get an Honourary Not Men pass in this arrangement?

        1. macavitykitsune
          macavitykitsune July 11, 2013 at 11:03 am |

          maybe gay or bi men get an Honourary Not Men pass in this arrangement

          Yes, I’m very curious. If a cis straight Chinese woman, a trans straight white man and a cis gay black guy disagreed on politics, whose murder would Becca support as being most social justicey? Or is there just, like, a magic 8-ball that determines who’s most death-deserving on this particular day? Does it have an “eh, not really feeling the blood and gore right now, maybe try rational discourse” option?

        2. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
          The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 11, 2013 at 4:12 pm |

          Mac – apparently now it’s Ebil Politicians who are legit targets for assassination. Whether women who’re (presumably) right-wing pollies are legit targets as well I’m not sure, but Lotus “obviously I’m not advocating genocide, OBVIOUSLY” Becca is doing some nice goalpoast shifting work here.

      2. LotusBecca
        LotusBecca July 11, 2013 at 4:44 am |

        I am perfectly OK with the fact that some women hate all men. I don’t share those feelings, but I understand where they are coming from. Women hating men, given the way things are under patriarchy, makes a lot of sense. In a similar way, I can see why a person of color would hate all white folks or a disabled person would hate all able-bodied people. Being oppressed really, really sucks. It’s a natural survival mechanism to overgeneralize about the people oppressing you. Women’s hatred of men is responsible for a net total of zero problems in the world. Now as for men’s hatred of women. . .

        1. Ally S
          Ally S July 11, 2013 at 8:06 am |

          Even if it’s just an instinctive overgeneralization as you say, hating men not only makes no sense given the nature of the patriarchy, but it also serves as just another form of bigotry. Such a view (and I understand that you don’t hate all men, given your words) makes the problem of misogyny about men as a group rather than what it actually is: a power structure that treats women like garbage. This is true despite the fact that one could more readily sympathize with someone who is bigoted against men because of the injustice ze has dealt with at the hands of individual men than someone who is bigoted against women because they’re all weak and inferior. As you know, there’s a difference between being able to find a motivation understandable in some ways and supporting or condoning it.

          Of course, there are some men who take advantage of their privilege deliberately to treat others like shit, but they have a choice in doing so, and countless men refuse to do so as far as I can tell. I see a lot of men, even some outside of feminist circles, who want to give up their privilege and refuse to take advantage of it in at least some major ways. And so in addition to the fact that bigotry against men is still bigotry (even though it’s not institutionalized like misogyny), I don’t think it’s fair in the slightest to frown upon male allies who sincerely care about dismantling the patriarchy.

        2. Miranda
          Miranda July 11, 2013 at 11:26 am |

          Such a view (and I understand that you don’t hate all men, given your words) makes the problem of misogyny about men as a group rather than what it actually is: a power structure that treats women like garbage.

          You’re not about to find me saying “Let’s hate all the men,” let alone “let’s kill all the men,” but for all practical purposes, in most of my life, yes, it is about “men as a group,” and I’m uncomfortable with sublimating the many ways that individual men have hurt the individual me into this idea of “patriarchy: the power structure that victimizes everybody!” And while hating all men is bigotry, it has been repeated ad naseum throughout the blogosphere that automatic suspicion of men is often a matter of survival and quite frankly, you won’t find me apologizing to anyone for that. And yes, that includes men who are not “patriarchy conforming.” I was raped by a nerd who had been bullied throughout his childhood.

          Also, I would submit that there are plenty of men who are not making a conscious decision or choice to “take advantage of their privilege” but are simply doing so because it is easy, affords benefits to them, because that is all they have known, and because that is what most men they have seen do. Whether or not they should be held morally accountable for those actions, I do not know. But whether or not a man understand that he is a raping me, I am still being raped.

          I don’t mean to be the “WAHHH TEH MENZ ARE MEAN” wet blanket of the bunch, but I also want to register how I sometimes feel icky when the whole “patriarchy is about power not individual men” gets pushed.

          I mean, obviously, there are many men in my life that I love and respect and who are oppressed even more than me, but I feel like I shouldn’t have to add this as a stipulation on a feminist website.

        3. Gretchen
          Gretchen July 11, 2013 at 5:20 pm |

          Thank you Miranda. You totally hit the nail on the head of what was bothering me in this comment thread – particularly the comments directed at Becca. In my everyday life, the agents/enforcers of the patriarchal power structure ARE mostly men, and erasing that experience sounds a little too close to apologism for individual acts of oppression, privilege wielding etc

        4. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
          The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 11, 2013 at 10:04 pm |

          Gretchen, LotusBecca started out talking about killing men, had a bit of a detour into killing various oppressor groups’ representatives with a “when necessary” caveat, then went on to politicians and the like.

          She was talking about murder.

          Since when is saying “advocating murder is not cool” erasing that yes, commenters here do know men overall are the group who benefit from and enforce (knowingly or not) patriarchy?

        5. Ally S
          Ally S July 11, 2013 at 11:50 pm |

          I was mainly responding to the idea that to be male is to be an oppressor. But I agree with you that framing it as purely a matter of power in the way you object to is problematic; it’s not like there’s no such thing as an individual man who uses his privilege to oppress women. I apologize if I came off as insensitive in some way.

        6. Miranda
          Miranda July 12, 2013 at 3:31 am |

          Erm…but to be male is to be an oppressor. To be white is to be an oppressor. To be a non-native USian to be an oppressor. To be rich is to be an oppressor.

          It’s not an evaluative statement of a man’s personal morality. It’s a statement about where someone stands relationally on a certain power axis.

        7. Miranda
          Miranda July 12, 2013 at 3:32 am |

          Look, I mean, I don’t want to get in a flame war over this if I’m purely complaining on semantic grounds. You know what I mea, right?

        8. Ally S
          Ally S July 12, 2013 at 7:42 am |

          Look, I mean, I don’t want to get in a flame war over this if I’m purely complaining on semantic grounds. You know what I mea, right?

          I just used the word “oppressor” in an imprecise way. I was certainly using that word in an evaluative sense i.e. I was saying that not all men consciously decide to oppress women. When I read LotusBecca’s comment, I thought she was implying that all men should be hated because they all deliberately conspire to keep women at a lower status than theirs, so I responded to that point. Please note that I didn’t think, anywhere in this thread, that you shared LotusBecca’s view of men – I was specifically addressing her view only.

          Anyway, I apologize for not making myself clear. And I understand your views perfectly fine. Things like this happen sometimes. =P

        9. matlun
          matlun July 12, 2013 at 11:51 am |

          Erm…but to be male is to be an oppressor. To be white is to be an oppressor. To be a non-native USian to be an oppressor. To be rich is to be an oppressor.

          But wouldn’t that definition mean that everyone is an oppressor (since after including a few more axis of oppression, virtually everyone is privileged in some aspect)?

          I think you are right that it is just a question about semantics (ie structural analysis vs judging personal morality), but it seems to me that with such a wide definition the term becomes almost pointless and void of meaning.

        10. Ally S
          Ally S July 12, 2013 at 12:23 pm |

          I prefer to say something like “privileged class” instead of “oppressor class” because for some reason the latter seems to imply some kind of deliberation – as though people in that group always consciously conspire to oppress another group. I know that’s not what’s intended when people use the word “oppressor” in such a way, but that’s how it comes off to me.

        11. pheenobarbidoll
          pheenobarbidoll July 12, 2013 at 1:55 pm |

          Conscious intent doesn’t matter. The consequences are the same, and intent isn’t magic. White people not intending to deliberately oppress me are still oppressing me and are still in the oppressor group. They, as a group, are benefiting from NA oppression. They, also as individuals, are benefiting from NA oppression/genocide. That doesn’t change simply because some of the white people aren’t consciously, deliberately killing us.

        12. macavitykitsune
          macavitykitsune July 12, 2013 at 2:00 pm |

          @pheeno honestly, after reading your comments here over the years, I don’t see how any voluntary migrants to/residents of North America aren’t de facto oppressing native peoples by existing. I recognise that that places me in an oppressor class myself. Which tbh doesn’t bother me in and of itself. I mean, I want to get better at not taking advantage of it, and ideally work to dismantle it, but I’m not going to whine and moan about how it’s so haaaaaard to be oppressed for something I didn’t doooooo.

        13. Ally S
          Ally S July 12, 2013 at 2:30 pm |

          Eh, you two are right. My reason for feeling slightly reluctant about using it doesn’t really make any sense – especially since it’s an accurate term.

        14. pheenobarbidoll
          pheenobarbidoll July 12, 2013 at 2:58 pm |

          @mac- That’s why the term in Indigenous activism is colonizer. Colonizer doesn’t just refer to the people who showed up in boats 500 years ago, and one can be a colonizer without being in an oppressor group.

        15. macavitykitsune
          macavitykitsune July 12, 2013 at 4:36 pm |

          @pheeno makes perfect sense to me! I know other (desi) Indians who would grumble at ever being classed as colonisers, because we’ve been colonised ourselves, many times. But I’m of the opinion that ignoring one’s own shit in favour of screaming that white people are the only! bad! people! EVAR! is pretty counterproductive to actually creating any kind of equality.

        16. pheenobarbidoll
          pheenobarbidoll July 12, 2013 at 4:49 pm |

          yup

        17. Gretchen
          Gretchen July 12, 2013 at 8:09 pm |

          (sorry about the late, possibly unread reply, timezone issues!)
          @The Kittehs’ Unpaid Help
          Yes I do understand what LotusBecca said, I did read it.
          And yes I do know she was talking about murder.
          And…well, maybe not as she intended, but I do get it. I live in a place where non-violent models of resistance are pushed and glorified constantly but, have, in the past 20 years, achieved absolutely nothing except to create corruption and ultimately delegitimise justice movements as opportunism. I don’t think that violence is an illegitimate tool against oppression, in fact it seems integral.

          I was responding very specifically to certain comments that were all “it’s not men, it’s the PATRIARCHY” ie, don’t hate the players, hate the game. Which – and I am not saying this was the intent of the commenters – does sound like erasure. Because it washes away the accountability of individual actors with ‘oh, but they don’t know any better’, or, even worse, frames it as bad apple syndrome.

  9. TMK
    TMK July 10, 2013 at 4:52 pm |

    Perhaps Lotus is actually human extincion activist in radfem disguise?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Voluntary_Human_Extinction_Movement

    1. Tim
      Tim July 10, 2013 at 5:46 pm |

      Lotus didn’t make it sound like anything was going to be voluntary.

      1. TMK
        TMK July 10, 2013 at 8:36 pm |

        Well, i was being facetious. Lotus is obviously way too far off the rocker to take seriously (for me personally).

        1. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
          The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 10, 2013 at 10:17 pm |

          Seconding that, 99% of the time.

        2. Barnacle Strumpet
          Barnacle Strumpet July 10, 2013 at 10:37 pm |

          Can we leave the ableism out today? Whether Lotus has a mental illness or not is completely irrelevent to the correctness or appropriateness of what was said. Calling them “off the rocker” for what they said is not cool.

        3. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
          The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 11, 2013 at 3:54 am |

          Fair point, BarnacleStrumpet, sorry. But LotusBecca’s opinions get my side-eye or WTF most of the time.

        4. TMK
          TMK July 11, 2013 at 8:48 am |

          Hm, i’m not native speaker and ‘off the rocker’ is not a phrase i use often. I was searching for something meaning ‘so far away from acceptable/reasonable/sensible worldwiev/viewpoint/opinions that it is hard to take seriously’, and ended with the above phrase. Sorry.

        5. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
          The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 11, 2013 at 4:14 pm |

          Off the planet, maybe? I don’t think that implies mental illness (anyone know yes/no on that?).

          Or “living in a parallel universe” perhaps.

        6. Barnacle Strumpet
          Barnacle Strumpet July 11, 2013 at 7:01 pm |

          It’s okay TMK, I hope I wasn’t too harsh. There’s just this trend of people saying “anyone who supports/does X violent act is crazy” and I assumed that’s what you meant with “off her rocker”.

    2. LotusBecca
      LotusBecca July 11, 2013 at 5:45 am |

      I’m not a radfem. Radical feminism is an ideology that holds the root cause of all oppression in society is men’s domination over women. That’s not something I believe in. I also don’t agree with the typical radfem positions on sex work, BDSM, or trans people. . .just to pick out a few topics, oh, completely at random. I admit I’m an extremist, but I’m not a radfem.

      1. TMK
        TMK July 11, 2013 at 8:53 am |

        Actually, i sort of remember that you were transwoman, so i did not believe you were a radical feminist when i wrote the above remark.

        Yet, the ‘kill all men’ trope is common within radical feminism, so what you wrote suited that disguise. You don’t have to be radical feminist to use radfem disguise. Eh, in any case your original comment was stupid, offensive and counterproductive (to the feminist or in fact any progressive) goals.

  10. karak
    karak July 10, 2013 at 6:24 pm |

    One of my complicated-yet-favorite movie scenes is in 300, where the Spartan Queen, Gorgo, stabs the man who raped her and then betrayed her. And if you look at how she stabs him, she clearly cuts into his dick, upward into his stomach, and then makes it very clear she’s raping him with the knife, repeating back to him the words he said to her the night before.

    I don’t just want women to be tough, murderous, and violent as men, I also want to see my men thoughtful, emotional, and sometimes, victims. Again, I like 300 because, in the film, Leonidas is more emotional and gentler than his wife, in many ways–she encourages him to murder the Persian messenger, she tells him to come back with his shield or on it. She upholds the male cultural ideals better than he does, and drives him to live up to them. Again, complicated, SO PROBLEMATIC IN SO MANY WAYS, but I still see a glimmer of what I want in her and in that film, especially with the gratuitious naked male bodies everywhere, with their chests exposed and faces covered, FOR ONCE THE GUYS WITH HOT BODIES AND NO FACES.

    I was obsessed with serial killers when I was younger, and I love Dexter. I play the Batman Arkham games religiously because I love the experience of being someone big, and strong, and beating people who goddamn deserve it.

    I want to see a world with a female antagonist, where she’s not in a corset, or a catsuit unzipped to her navel, or heels five inches high–she is nicely dressed, with business casual slacks, practical shoes, and a stiletto in her bag. She’s older, not incredibly skinny (I’m skinny but I’d like to see more variety in women on TV because all the skinny women makes me want to be skinnier). I would watch that till the crows come home.

    1. shfree
      shfree July 10, 2013 at 6:36 pm |

      Yeah, it would be nice to have a non-sexualized, female antagonist. I don’t need to see another evil femme fatale using her sexuality to make her cunning schemes work.

    2. tinffoil hattie
      tinffoil hattie July 10, 2013 at 7:42 pm |

      So if there were more fat women on TV you’d feel okay about your body?

      1. macavitykitsune
        macavitykitsune July 10, 2013 at 8:21 pm |

        Yes. It’s pretty 101 that varied representation increases self-esteem, whether re: race, gender, sexuality, wev. Funny, I thought I was the noob here.

        1. A4
          A4 July 11, 2013 at 9:07 am |

          I’m gonna contextualize something for you, given your previously stated feelings.

          Tinfoil Hattie thinks Twisty Faster is the bees knees and commented under the same name at IBTP for a very long time.

        2. macavitykitsune
          macavitykitsune July 11, 2013 at 2:50 pm |

          Well, that explains things.

          IBTP is…well. It and I have differences of ideology re: men, to say the least.

    3. TMK
      TMK July 10, 2013 at 8:44 pm |

      The irony of quoting 300, a movie about hordes of men murdering other men and wishing for men to be shown more often as a victims is nice.

      But i guess Karak means more of a personalized victim not a redshirt, and more ‘pure’ victims (as in not engaged in similar level of violence and not portrayed as evil). That seems to be happening much. much rarer, compared to the wholesale slaughters that are usually shown on action movies.

    4. Miranda
      Miranda July 11, 2013 at 3:17 am |

      Again, I like 300 because, in the film, Leonidas is more emotional and gentler than his wife, in many ways–she encourages him to murder the Persian messenger, she tells him to come back with his shield or on it.

      I haven’t seen 300, so take this with a grain of salt. But there’s this whole concept of whetting–women encouraging men to pluck up and go take vengeance or be a TWUE MAN or whatevs–that’s basically a trope in Icelandic saga, and from what I’ve read, it’s been found to have existed as a social institution in ancient Greece and also currently in Albanian feud structures. I hesitate to say whether or not it’s actually empowering; I’ve read quite a few analyses that argue it’s all about just making the men look better and that the evil whetting females get to represent the “ruthless” or “nastier” emotions associated with killing. Haven’t seen 300, so don’t know if that’s the same thing, and I don’t want to take away how you experienced it. Just throwing in what I know about whetting and how I feel about it–in the sagas, every time I see it, it grosses me out a little bit.

    5. Gretchen
      Gretchen July 11, 2013 at 5:35 pm |

      I’m not sure 300 is the best example to use karak, yeah I always find it nice to see a lady kicking arse, but the film was so deeply racist it kind of negated any enjoyment I could get out of it.

      1. karak
        karak July 12, 2013 at 12:16 am |

        The film was very racist, yes, but I feel it had a subversive element to the HOO-RAH WHITE STAND IN FOR GREEKS elements.

        The scene where Leonidas asks, “Spartans, what is your profession?!” and every single one saber rattles? Every one?! is cool on first watch but disturbing later. They call themselves “Free men” and mouth that they are the only people who have real freedom, but they all look the same, do the same thing, and have the same thoughts, desires, and aspirations. The land of free men has no individuality, and more than that, the Western world is descended culturally from the Athenians, the non-soldiers.

        The Persian Empire is displayed as the place of freaks, but, frankly, I’m more of a freak than a hoo-rah soldier, and sure, I’d like to punch people while lookin’ good but I’d much rather be myself in the incredibly tolerant Persian Empire, which tolerate everything but intolerance. Where would you really rather live? Sparta or Persia?

        I mean I could be giving the film much more analysis than I should. And, like I said before, it’s very problematic and I respect people who just say, “No, I can’t stomach through X, Y, and Z bullshit for the rest of it”.

        But I kind of want to write a paper on how I think it’s secretly subversive and undercutting the pseudo-neo-Spartan ideology at every turn.

        1. Gretchen
          Gretchen July 12, 2013 at 7:40 pm |

          Sorry karak, i’m in a totally different timezone so I don’t know if you will even see my reply. I do get what you’re saying, and at first watch I really enjoyed 300, if anything for the mesmerising visuals. But…well, it’s just one of those things. I live in the Middle East, and seeing those faceless, violent and, ultimately, incompetent ‘savage’ Persian marauders, just played into too many modern media tropes for me. If I thought that even 50% of the audience viewed the film with the same critical lens, I wouldn’t be so icked by it.

        2. Donna L
          Donna L July 12, 2013 at 8:11 pm |

          I think it’s secretly subversive and undercutting the pseudo-neo-Spartan ideology at every turn.

          Maybe that’s how you read it, but I very much doubt that’s how the people who made the movie intended it by essentially portraying the Persian “hordes” as faceless and non-human. Without any attempt at all at authenticity or making any of them (like the ridiculous Xerxes character] look remotely Persian. Not that Persians were necessarily so completely different ethnically from Greeks.

          In answer to your question, I would have chosen living in the Persian Empire over being a Spartan (of any gender) 1000% of the time. Especially if I were still Jewish, given that if I recall correctly, the Persians continued to treat the Jewish communities very well after they conquered Babylon. (Leaving aside, of course, the whole story of Esther!)

        3. Alexandra
          Alexandra July 12, 2013 at 8:55 pm |

          God knows, the history of imperial ancient Persia is hardly free of oppression and suffering, but ancient Persia pioneered religious tolerance and Cyrus in particular appears to have been an admirable leader. In contrast, Sparta was a tiny cultural backwater that managed to dominate the Peloponnese by instituting the most repressive slave state in all Greece, thus freeing up its fighting-age citizens to engage in perpetual military exercise. Unlike most of the rest of the ancient world, slavery in Sparta was based on the perpetual subjugation of a particular ethnic group, the Helots, who could never win manumission.

          Wow, some choice.

          (that said, Athens was also pretty nasty if you didn’t have the luck to be born a citizen. It’s just that Athens gave us some of the greatest philosophers in the Western world, and was a home for learning and art – it had redeeming qualities.)

        4. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
          The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 12, 2013 at 9:06 pm |

          I like Terry Pratchett’s take on Athens, in his comment that Ephebe was the cradle of democracy, but it needed its nappy changed. :)

        5. karak
          karak July 13, 2013 at 2:09 am |

          Responding to everyone: I completely validate the perspective that the “icky nonwhite people!!!” vibe was strong in this one.

          I shamefully admit I haven’t read the graphic novel yet, but the author is someone known for having a lot of themes in his work that underscore the obvious message for the more subtle, questioning ones, which is why I even bother to look for ones in the first place.

          Donna L, I’m a little ambiguous, again, about the Persian hordes. I completely see the racism in the movie (I mean Christ almighty why are the Greeks always white, seriously?) and it made me angry, but the Persian army was insanely, insanely huge–the Immortals were so named because they’d fight 10,00 strong, half would die, and they’d pull those guys from the reserves to be 10,000 strong again.

          Ignoring the fact that Cyrus was an incredibly enlightened leader, he led a fucking terrifying army of conquering with diverse abilities and the numbers to literally shake the ground as they walked. They were no hoard, they were a human machine, meant to terrify, awe, and imply that each member was more than human, as part of the collective of one of the greatest empires this world has ever seen.

          To face them would have been to face monsters.

          But, of course, the filmmakers found it necessary to take this interaction and graft our pre-exisiting racial stereotypes about nonwhite people being things and white people being individuals, which is funny, because Cyrus probably had more Aryan-looking people in his army than the goddamn Spartans did, so it’ a load of shit designed to appeal to the lowest form of lizard brain.

          The film is problematic. I feel it has a enough merits to be worth arguing in it’s favor, I don’t feel that the merits are worthy enough to convince everyone that it’s a good movie with cool stuff and not, as Ebert put it, racist “Olympic war porn”.

  11. NNS
    NNS July 10, 2013 at 6:39 pm |

    This was a very well written, OPINION about the writer’s observations. I think some of you are reading too much into things. She has a very valid point overall.

  12. tinffoil hattie
    tinffoil hattie July 10, 2013 at 7:40 pm |

    ” … the medium of feministe … ” has an entire post up about serial killers, women not killing enough, mutilated women, etc. Now, I’m sure all the commenters here eschew popular TV shows and movies. Nobody here watches cable, or porn, or summer blockbusters. Probably this post was written for the benefit of all the silent commenters who secretly enjoy depictions of woman-as-object-of-violence.

    1. Anon21
      Anon21 July 10, 2013 at 7:49 pm |

      Feministe has a post up critiquing the media trope of women-as-victims-of-violent-crime. Not endorsing it.

      And it’s great that you know all the media that Feministe commenters consume, which allows you to deduce that they are “tacitly advocating” violence against women, which allows you to point out that they have no standing to challenge or critique LotusBecca’s explicit advocacy of indiscriminate violence against men. But for those of us who don’t have access to all this secret information, it helps to show your work.

      1. Anon21
        Anon21 July 10, 2013 at 7:51 pm |

        Oh, sorry, I left out a crucial additional secret fact: that when the commenters who were getting on Lotus Becca’s case do consume misogynistic media (as you know they do), they do so mindlessly.

    2. macavitykitsune
      macavitykitsune July 11, 2013 at 1:22 am |

      Now, I’m sure all the commenters here eschew popular TV shows and movies. Nobody here watches cable, or porn, or summer blockbusters.

      AND we’re all at least 23% less sanctimonious than you!

      Truly, our accomplishments are versatile and accomplishful.

    3. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
      The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 11, 2013 at 10:09 pm |

      Now, I’m sure all the commenters here eschew popular TV shows and movies. Nobody here watches cable, or porn, or summer blockbusters.

      I don’t watch them. Thank you very much for sneering at the very possibility that anyone might, in fact, not like that stuff, as well as the assumption that those who do watch any of it do so mindlessly.

      You’re generalising just as much as the OP. Well done.

  13. macavitykitsune
    macavitykitsune July 10, 2013 at 8:36 pm |

    Oh, and before I forget, I totally wanted to do a shout-out to female mass-murderers/serial killers in Bollywood! Ek Hasina Thi is a pretty viscerally satisfying movie, and I think there was one made about Phoolan Devi, too. (Bandit Queen? I can’t rmemeber its exact title.) Also Khoon Bhari Maang. *grin* Just in case OP or anyone else wants some “raargh fucking men and their fucking patriarchy, let’s fuck their shit the fuck up” action.

    1. shfree
      shfree July 10, 2013 at 9:02 pm |

      It is Bandit Queen, Macavity. And it is a good movie, although it does deserve a huge trigger warning, as her story is not a pretty one.

      1. macavitykitsune
        macavitykitsune July 10, 2013 at 9:26 pm |

        Oh my, yes. Actually, the other two deserve trigger warnings, too (sexual assault and violence). And thanks, shfree. Half the reason I haven’t seen it is that I can’t casually watch sexually violent material.

        1. Hrovitnir
          Hrovitnir July 10, 2013 at 10:17 pm |

          Yeah, watching Bandit Queen was a terrible, terrible idea. Even though she’s fucking awesome, I can only remember the terribly realistic rape scenes. :(

    2. Hugh
      Hugh July 11, 2013 at 6:16 am |

      I was really uncomfortable about this article’s characterising Phoolan Devi as a serial killer. Devi was a political revolutionary who later went on to become an elected member of the Lokh Saba. Comparing her to Wuornos does her, and the people she fought for, a huge disservice.

      1. LI
        LI July 11, 2013 at 8:34 am |

        I don’t think that was the author’s intention. She did write in the post that Phoolan Devi is not an actual serial killer. I think she included her to make her point that women also feel/experience aggression and can enact violence in a way that challenges our patriarchal society. Ultimately, I think that is the type of character the author wants to see more on TV.

        1. LI
          LI July 11, 2013 at 8:49 am |

          Honestly, I would like to see more characters like that, too. The author is right that so much of TV just shows women as victims in need of being rescued. And they’re typically a supporting character, not the main character of the show. Why are we so afraid of women showing any type of righteous anger on TV, particularly in a way that challenges a society’s patriarchy and misogyny? When this is shown at all, I feel the character ends up being put back in her place and made to see the folly of her ways (even in shows that don’t involve violence, but just show a woman complaining or advocating for feminism in any way). But the male characters are never forced to confront their misogynistic ways (even in crime shows when the criminal is eventually captured). So men get to keep on killing women on tv without any complaint.

        2. Hugh
          Hugh July 11, 2013 at 10:15 am |

          Well, she did, but still, I don’t see how it works with the argument. You can’t say ‘I want to see characters like Aileen Wuornos and Phoonam Devi’ because they are fundamentally totally different people. I don’t see why Devi was even mentioned in this post, really.

    3. Tim
      Tim July 11, 2013 at 2:38 pm |

      Bandit Queen is an awesome film.

  14. gratuitous_violet
    gratuitous_violet July 10, 2013 at 8:58 pm |

    This has been an awesome thread and a really thought-provoking post.

    I actually think there are many truths on all sides here. I would like to see more diverse depictions of the awful people some people like to watch on television, and would totally tune in for a lady serial killer, because that would mean our cultural narrative would be by definition more inclusive. (And also, NGL, look at my handle. I love murder shows. The universalizing in the OP annoyed me too though, because I know many people don’t.)

    On the other hand, I also think that the acceptance of gratuitous violence (heh) against women is to a certain degree indicative of a comfort level with those things, for some people at least. I would really hesitate to take this too far though; recently I’ve mostly been watching Cartoon Network, and I wouldn’t want anyone to think I tacitly endorse a post-apocalyptic world where humans are extinct but candy-mutants run rampant.

  15. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
    The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 10, 2013 at 10:11 pm |

    I couldn’t even finish this article. I’m sick to fucking death of shows about the rape and/or murder of women. I don’t identify with any of the characters, I’m long past the age of wanting to sit through any sort of gore, let alone “realistic” gore, and it nauseates me that yes, the misogyny of serial killers is treated, not as something to talk about, but as ENTERTAINMENT.

    So kindly excuse me from the “But for an hour each week, we can imagine that we have the guts necessary to hunt down the next Hannibal Lecter. Or – and this is everyone’s dirty little secret – we can imagine that we are him” statement and its ilk. I’m one of those people who don’t identify, and don’t gain carthasis or anything else from this stuff – I just find myself thinking of the real women who are raped and murdered every. fucking. day.

    1. EG
      EG July 10, 2013 at 10:52 pm |

      Seconded. I don’t find slasher or serial-killer stories exciting, just upsetting.

    2. Safiya Outlines
      Safiya Outlines July 11, 2013 at 3:52 pm |

      Agreed. I just cannot do it. There is so, so much of it on TV, so graphically portrayed and I don’t want or need to see any of it.

      Women being hurt is not my entertainment. Small exception is made for martial art films, where there are some brilliant female protagonists and antagonists.

    3. karak
      karak July 12, 2013 at 12:22 am |

      The author was clearly talking about the audience who enjoyed these kinds of works in the “we”, not the “we” of six billion people on the planet earth or even the “we” of all comentators ever at feministe.

      I hate torture porn. I despise Hostel and The Human Centipede and all that crap, but I adore Dexter, The Mentalist, and many of the other shows she watched. And it fills some kind of need in my psyche, and I’m not alone, and I’d like to demand that the media my subconscious consumes lines more up with what my conscience believes. And I am thrilled to the point of butterflies imaging a storyline with a Murder, She Wrote star female character who is the murderer.

      So, like, not every post is going to press your buttons, and it’s okay to point that out, but for some of us it really hits home, and the fact that I watch fiction without ruminating on human suffering doesn’t make me some kind of inferior level of being, and I really do feel that’s what you’re implying here.

      1. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
        The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 12, 2013 at 9:10 pm |

        Then perhaps she shouldn’t use phrases like “Or – and this is everyone’s dirty little secret – we can imagine that we are him” when she’s describing a subset of people. The article was phrased in a way that suggested everyone reading it watches those shows, however they go about it.

        1. karak
          karak July 13, 2013 at 2:16 am |

          Here’s the thing–inclusiveness and clarity is good in posts when we could harm and isolate other members of our community. The new post up about menstruation makes a point to talk about trans woman and men, because they’re often made non-existant and invisible in those kinds of conversations about how all women have periods and boobs and ovaries.

          Or, if you’re talking about cognitive and emotional things, it’s worth noting there are people who aren’t neurotypical and it’s okay to be like that, because, again, they are treated like invisible things. In conversations on sexuality, there should be a nod to non-heteronormative people and a clear explanation of who the author is addressing and what kinds of issues, because no, not every girl wants a boy, or even wants anyone.

          But when we are talking about TV shows the author doesn’t have to make this special, clear lines to make sure people who don’t like serial killer media are addressed and affirmed, because you’re not a group of people commonly treated like shit and subject to othering, you have a slightly different taste in media entertainment, and it’s frankly bizarre to me the need to say I DON’T WATCH THOSE when obviously some people don’t watch those shows and a little bit of article hyperbole is neither dangerous nor othering nor hurtful. You just seem hurt you didn’t warrant a completely unnecessary shout-out.

  16. Ally S
    Ally S July 10, 2013 at 11:50 pm |

    [Content note: rape]

    Thirded. I’ve been told that I should watch movies like The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, A Clockwork Orange, and Boys Don’t Cry, but I can’t handle watching rape scenes or anything close to them.

    I remember that incredibly disturbing part of The Wall in which a woman gets raped in her car, and all I thought after watching that scene was “Holy fuck, why was that necessary?” I can’t appreciate rape scenes simply because they serve to remind me about rape culture in one of the worst ways possible.

    1. Ally S
      Ally S July 10, 2013 at 11:50 pm |

      That was at Kitteh. Another comment fail. V_V

      1. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
        The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 10, 2013 at 11:57 pm |

        It’s the Blockquote Monster’s Sockpuppet, Reply Fail! Aieeeeee!

      2. LemonDemon
        LemonDemon July 11, 2013 at 8:08 pm |

        I’d like to point out Boys Don’t Cry wasn’t the story of a woman getting raped.

        1. macavitykitsune
          macavitykitsune July 11, 2013 at 8:29 pm |

          Aaliyah never specified the gender of the rape victim.

        2. Ally S
          Ally S July 11, 2013 at 11:17 pm |

          What Mac said. And as a trans* woman myself, I’d be especially horrified by a rape scene in which a trans* man is being raped because I have fears of anti-trans* violence as well.

    2. Miranda
      Miranda July 11, 2013 at 3:25 am |

      Yeah. I rather enjoy the Game of the Thrones story in terms of court intrigue and fictional Medieval fantasyland politics. But all of the horrible sexual violence has precluded my enjoyment of the series. (Not to mention the totally gross racism/colonialism.)

      Anyway I real a really interesting post by someone about the defense, in the context of Game fo Thrones, “But that’s just how Medieval Europe/life/whatever is/was!!!” (although Westeros as Medieval Europe is so laughable I can’t even get my head around it) Her point was that, if you’re throwing in rape of women to be realistic, you’ll have to throw in some rape of dudes too. She wasn’t advocating for it, just pointing out that that’s the natural extension of that line of argument.

      1. Lindsay
        Lindsay July 11, 2013 at 5:48 pm |

        I rather enjoy the Game of the Thrones story in terms of court intrigue and fictional Medieval fantasyland politics. But all of the horrible sexual violence has precluded my enjoyment of the series. (Not to mention the totally gross racism/colonialism.)

        I feel this way, too. I love the story, and love the characters, but more in spite of all the rape scenes than because of them.

        (Because of that, even though A Song of Ice and Fire is one of my favorite things ever, I don’t typically recommend it to people unless I know they don’t mind extreme violence.)

    3. shfree
      shfree July 11, 2013 at 11:29 pm |

      I was able to handle the Swedish version of Dragon Tattoo, but I don’t ever need to see Boys Don’t Cry or A Clockwork Orange again.

    4. karak
      karak July 12, 2013 at 12:27 am |

      I read A Clockwork Orange and the language helps… insulate?… your psyche from the situations being described in the text. It’s one of my favorite books I like to re-read it every few months.

      There’s some movie that shows the scenes in reverse order, starting with the end of the film and working backwards to the beginning, and in it there’s a graphic, graphic rape scene that is actually meaningful and meant to disturb–apparently the director inserted some strange frequencies into the sound that isn’t consciously heard but causes nausea and vertigo in the listener. I can’t bring myself to even attempt to watch it. I’ve read reviews and it makes me start to feel sick and tear up.

      Requiem For A Dream has a non-traditional rape scene in the end–rape by coercion on a victim who’s seeking drugs and trades sexual favors in return for feeding her addiction. It made me cry watching it. I believe it’s an amazing, amazing film that is disgusted by what is happening to the woman, not by the woman, but I cannot watch it more than once.

      1. Alexandra
        Alexandra July 12, 2013 at 1:12 am |

        I couldn’t get past the rape scene in the book, and I’ve never watched the film version of Clockwork Orange. The end of Requiem for a Dream is one of the best film depictions of sexual violation I’ve ever seen; I’ve only ever been able to watch it once myself.

        1. karak
          karak July 13, 2013 at 2:18 am |

          I can’t watch the movie of A Clockwork Orange, I sat through some scenes but other I fast-forwarded, like when they’re raping the woman. I just.. couldn’t.

          Good movie, but full of no.

        2. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
          The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 13, 2013 at 2:22 am |

          I had to watch Clockwork Orange as part of an English course when I was seventeen-eighteen. It didn’t bother me then (this is over thirty years ago) but no way would I watch it now.

  17. david
    david July 11, 2013 at 4:16 am |

    if its any help I vaguely recall a movie with the main character of the mentalist as the main character who somehow obtains a list of every woman he will sleep with. The last name on this list being a female serial killer who I believe was killing misogynistic people of some degree (rapist frat boys is one example I remember) and in the movie the main character is gang raped by a bus load of girls while injured after a bike crash, this seems to be kind of what some people here want to see so you might be able to google it.

  18. Rear admiral of the admirable rear
    Rear admiral of the admirable rear July 11, 2013 at 5:37 am |

    Since it hasn’t been mentioned yet, I’ll point out that Kill Bill exists. That it’s extremely conventional in a large amount of ways (which is a Tarantino thing, but still), makes me think that it’s not so much the roles women have but the narrow range of tropes that are available to women characters that is part of the problem.

    1. born in east LA
      born in east LA July 11, 2013 at 12:57 pm |

      i love kill bill—i watch it every time it comes on, and my 13 yr old daughter loves it 2—its sick, twisted & wrong, but we love it anyway

  19. Hugh
    Hugh July 11, 2013 at 6:14 am |

    One of the shows you mentioned, Hannibal, actually did feature two female serial killers.

  20. taz
    taz July 11, 2013 at 8:23 am |

    I think we all miss a point here. These movies and tv shows are made for profit! And Sex sells! Look at all of the commercial’s! Even Kids toys have pretty women in them to Sell toys! So sex sells things. By using pretty women getting hurt they get people to watch and then they can sell airtime and make money. Lets be real here. 30 years ago most of this movies and tv shows would be allowed on air due to all of the blood, gore and sex. Now almost anything goes and soon even that thin wall will be gone. Do I agree, no frigging way! Heck I can remember the rape scene in “High Plains Drifter” that almost got it down graded to an “R” rating. And all they showed was some leg and let you image that sex was being done.
    Well about women killing just like the guys in the shows, I say ok, let them. Doubt it will happen. Hollywood and TV land isn’t ready for it yet.
    About Killing men. As a male I can say no. Matter of fact heck no! About killing rapists! Heck yes! However, I can one thing about it. Gandi! Work his way and get more people behind you.

    1. EG
      EG July 11, 2013 at 3:07 pm |

      “Pretty women” =/= “sex.”

      “Hurting pretty women” =/= “sex.”

      Therefore, the issue is not that sex sells. If sex sells, where are all the ads directed at straight women?

      And rape =/= sex.

  21. sharon cullars
    sharon cullars July 11, 2013 at 12:02 pm |

    one of the ways to backtrack from the violence against women trope is to “equalize” the victimization to include men. because yes, men are raped and murdered (maybe murdered more than women). and i truly believe there are serial killers who target males (ie, the craiglist killers who targeted indigent, homeless men). if the audience would get a realistic clue as to actual victimization, then young males might not be so gung ho on violence.

    also the deliberate titillation of women being assaulted and/or murdered is one of the reasons i no longer look at criminal minds. how can the writers be so clueless without an ounce of introspection? think of the slasher movies where the women are barely dressed and running with their breasts heaving? so obvious that a blind person could see it. so, yes the article author is correct in that these shows/movies are giving women audiences the finger. i’m tired of the 18-25 male demographic. (in my next novel, maybe they will be targeted for “sexual” reasons – just for a change of pace)

    1. Christina Paschyn
      Christina Paschyn July 11, 2013 at 4:03 pm |

      “one of the ways to backtrack from the violence against women trope is to “equalize” the victimization to include men”… “if the audience would get a realistic clue as to actual victimization, then young males might not be so gung ho on violence.”

      …” so, yes the article author is correct in that these shows/movies are giving women audiences the finger. i’m tired of the 18-25 male demographic. ”

      Very well said, Sharon. You’ve captured my central argument exactly. Thank you! If you’re interested in learning more about the impact of sexualized violence on men and boys I recommend you watch the Jackson Katz documentary I included in my article.

      1. Christina Paschyn
        Christina Paschyn July 11, 2013 at 4:24 pm |

        Clarification, meant to write the impact of media representations of sexualized violence against women on men and boys.

    2. trees
      trees July 11, 2013 at 6:55 pm |

      I pray this push to “equalize the victimization” doesn’t mean that there will be yet more images of violence against men of color.

      1. sharon cullars
        sharon cullars July 11, 2013 at 10:07 pm |

        why would that premise automatically mean that men of color would be targeted more than any other racial group of men? i know that this group is more often profiled by authorities but we’re talking about fictional “victimization.” as i have had three cousins brutally murdered (and yes i’m black) in the last couple of decades, i am not interested in seeing that on my television.

        1. trees
          trees July 11, 2013 at 10:32 pm |

          why would that premise automatically mean that men of color would be targeted more than any other racial group of men? i know that this group is more often profiled by authorities but we’re talking about fictional “victimization.” as i have had three cousins brutally murdered (and yes i’m black) in the last couple of decades, i am not interested in seeing that on my television.

          Because images of the brutalization of men of color are already normalized, and you talk about “equalizing the victimization” in terms of gender, leaving out mention of race, class and other identifiers, I presume that that will effectively mean more images of violence against marginalized men, specifically men of color.

        2. sharon cullars
          sharon cullars July 11, 2013 at 10:53 pm |

          this reply hierarchy is off. to answer, the other markers do need to be addressed but we still see more serial murders of women (and girls) than we do males of any color. again, this is talking about fiction presented on television and in movies. it’s all about the titillation and reaching that audience that finds the murder/abuse of women titillating. the murder of men doesn’t include that titillation factor, no matter the color, race or class. and unfortunately young men feel that it is “normal” to abuse young women, that it’s somehow natural.

          racism and classicism is a major factor in the actual abuse of black men (and women), and tptb know they would get a major push back if they consistently depicted men of color being serially murdered on television (although you may see an occasional storyline). men of color are more often than not portrayed as thugs and criminals and that has been “normalized” with viewing audiences. this is a deliberate objective i believe and reminds me of robert townsend’s insightful “hollywood shuffle.”

        3. sharon cullars
          sharon cullars July 11, 2013 at 11:03 pm |

          and going back to “equalization”, i don’t mean a specific targeting of men of color when it comes to depictions of victims of serial killers. it would be a general presentation of men based on gender and wouldn’t have men of color any more vulnerable than those in the actual demographics (18-25 majority white) who seem enthralled in seeing women eviscerated. if they saw “themselves” as victims, then the depiction of violence wouldn’t be so titillating overall.

        4. trees
          trees July 11, 2013 at 11:50 pm |

          and going back to “equalization”, i don’t mean a specific targeting of men of color when it comes to depictions of victims of serial killers.

          Right, I understood that from jump. I’m focusing on the anticipated outcome: the victimized men would quite likely be the very same marginalized men who are already targeted in the real and fictional worlds.

          men of color are more often than not portrayed as thugs and criminals and that has been “normalized” with viewing audiences.

          And their victims too are other marginalized men of color.

    3. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
      The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 11, 2013 at 10:13 pm |

      A way to help lessen fictional violence is … more fictional violence?

      1. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
        The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 11, 2013 at 10:16 pm |

        *Decrease, not lessen.

        1. sharon cullars
          sharon cullars July 11, 2013 at 11:07 pm |

          it would be great if scriptwriters respected women enough not to always depict women as victims. but they are going to keep giving their audiences what they think they want. an equalization would be a pushback against the normalization of women as rape/murder victims. unfortunately fighting fire with fire is sometimes necessary. young males are the ones who are particularly susceptible to these fictional messages about women.

        2. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
          The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 12, 2013 at 12:21 am |

          Eh, I just don’t see normalising any violence as being a good idea.

        3. sharon cullars
          sharon cullars July 12, 2013 at 11:43 am |

          i think we’re too far gone to ever “un-normalize” violence in the media (even with actual news, certain tropes are played up for audience titillation). it just isn’t going to happen therefore other measures must be taken. women are paying a higher price for the violence against women tropes in basic tv fare. young men again are so susceptible to these not-really-tacit messages and unfortunately they aren’t that introspective about humanity as a whole. pretty soon their still developing minds inculcate the idea that this is what “females” are; fodder for violence and sex. their self-interest needs to be piqued by putting them in the stead of the women they mentally debase and in some warped way, that actually may make them empathize with women overall. in their minds, if a woman and man can equally be victims, then maybe women and men stand on equal ground.

          i was trying to remember at least one movie where a serial killer targeted young males and i remembered a movie called “sheriffs” that was loosely based on the John Wayne Gacy case.

  22. born in east LA
    born in east LA July 11, 2013 at 12:59 pm |

    i remember an episode of csi that had a female serial killer who was killing young men and eating their livers

    1. Donna L
      Donna L July 11, 2013 at 2:18 pm |

      Well, that’s a relief, to know that such a show existed!

      1. A4
        A4 July 11, 2013 at 2:29 pm |

        ROFL

  23. Jill
    Jill July 11, 2013 at 3:33 pm | *

    Just a reminder that advocating violence and murder really violate Feministe’s commenting policy. Future comments that promote violence or murder will be deleted and the user banned.

    1. Fat Steve
      Fat Steve July 11, 2013 at 5:24 pm |

      Just a reminder that advocating violence and murder really violate Feministe’s commenting policy. Future comments that promote violence or murder will be deleted and the user banned.

      I see some commenters advocating violence against, and murder of, fictional men in movies. But that’s not the same as advocating violence and murder IRL.

      1. macavitykitsune
        macavitykitsune July 11, 2013 at 5:31 pm |

        Reread Becca’s comments; she’s explicitly advocating violence against non-fictional men for being men.

        1. Fat Steve
          Fat Steve July 11, 2013 at 5:48 pm |

          Reread Becca’s comments; she’s explicitly advocating violence against non-fictional men for being men.

          Ah yes, my mistake,I thought she was referring to Donna’s comment right above this one…I didn’t bother scrolling back up.

        2. Donna L
          Donna L July 11, 2013 at 8:41 pm |

          Steve, since you referred to my comment, I really, really — really — hope, particularly given what I’ve said elsewhere in this thread, that you realized that my statement (that it was a “relief” to learn of the existence of a show in which a female serial killer murdered men and ate their livers) was entirely sarcastic. Really.

        3. Fat Steve
          Fat Steve July 11, 2013 at 10:34 pm |

          Steve, since you referred to my comment, I really, really — really — hope, particularly given what I’ve said elsewhere in this thread, that you realized that my statement (that it was a “relief” to learn of the existence of a show in which a female serial killer murdered men and ate their livers) was entirely sarcastic. Really.

          Yes, of course. Which is why I found it odd that Jill’s comment was directly underneath it. I thought she was saying that even making that joke was offensive.

          DO you really think I would have defended you otherwise?

        4. Donna L
          Donna L July 12, 2013 at 12:32 am |

          I didn’t think so, but I wasn’t sure — it just seemed so odd to think that Jill could have found anything wrong with my comment unless it was somehow taken literally.

  24. Joe from and alternate universe
    Joe from and alternate universe July 11, 2013 at 4:10 pm |

    So I ask again, why can’t we have a female Dexter on TV? Like one who hunts down and makes misogynists pay for the rape and torture they commit? Let a woman stick it to the patriarchy for once!

    One only has to watch Deadly Women on Discovery to see examples of real female serial killers. The main problem is that the real life female serial killers aren’t thought of the in the same light as male serial killers. Most of the woman profiled killed many men – mainly for money – and some are portrayed as enjoying the killing. They are portrayed as evil, mainly because money was involved. But woman who killed for no apparent reason other than enjoyment are diagnosed as mentally ill, or having impaired judgement, while men are always seen as evil.

    Viewers might have a problem with an evil, female serial killer on TV not motivated by money, because society, including the majority of woman, sees them as sick more than bad. Wournos is a prime example of this, which makes her – in my mind – a bad example for this post. Many groups on the left sympathized with Wournos, citing her rough upbringing and poverty. Surely, she must be mentally deranged. While the killings were revenge for all the ill treatment in life she received, she couldn’t have possibly enjoyed killing those men. Charles Manson, on the other hand, had maybe a worse childhood; yet there’s not one ounce of understanding from even the most liberal groups – and I agree there shouldn’t be. And I do get that serial killers have severe personality disorders – one only has to listen to Manson’s insane rants to know that – but they know the suffering they are causing, which makes them evil.

    This extends to other areas as well. Women who have sex with underage boys surely must have mental issues, it’s not about sex. With men it’s all about sex. For woman that kill, it can’t be about the killing.

    1. karak
      karak July 12, 2013 at 12:31 am |

      That’s really interesting. I would be thrilled by a “female Dexter” cool, calculated, who admits she kills because she thinks it’s fun and enjoyable. I don’t want her to have been raped and killing for vengeance–killing for the sake of killing, and you’re right, I think a lot of people try to pathologize women differently from men when they commit “man crimes” of intense violence or sexual aggression.

  25. Joe from and alternate universe
    Joe from and alternate universe July 11, 2013 at 4:27 pm |

    one of the ways to backtrack from the violence against women trope is to “equalize” the victimization to include men. because yes, men are raped and murdered (maybe murdered more than women). and i truly believe there are serial killers who target males (ie, the craiglist killers who targeted indigent, homeless men). if the audience would get a realistic clue as to actual victimization, then young males might not be so gung ho on violence.

    Good point. But you must have missed the all the notoriety surrounding Jeffery Dahmer, John Wayne Gacy, Arthur Gary Bishop, William Bonin (The Freeway Killer), Westley Dodd, Wayne Williams, etc, etc. But I do agree the large majority of victims are women.

  26. Fat Steve
    Fat Steve July 11, 2013 at 5:17 pm |

    Jackie the Ripper: Where Are All The Female Serial Killers On TV?

    The Headline question has never intrigued me and I think a much more relevant question is:

    Why are all female killers/psychopaths on TV all portrayed in such a similar and stereotypical ‘crazy lady’ (not my term) way?

  27. moorepark
    moorepark July 11, 2013 at 6:54 pm |

    so why not kickstarer your own female serial killer web show instead of telling other people what they ought to make?

    1. Jill
      Jill July 11, 2013 at 7:00 pm | *

      Why not kickstarter your own blog instead of telling other people what to write about?

      1. macavitykitsune
        macavitykitsune July 11, 2013 at 7:16 pm |

        Why not do literally anything that isn’t critiquing patriarchal norms in any way?

        1. moorepark
          moorepark July 11, 2013 at 7:26 pm |

          Because I have goals in life that have nothing to do with critiquing patriarchal norms?

        2. macavitykitsune
          macavitykitsune July 11, 2013 at 7:29 pm |

          Why bother commenting to tell me about your goals when you could start a blog dedicated to your goals?

        3. moorepark
          moorepark July 11, 2013 at 8:20 pm |

          Why bother commenting to tell me about your goals

          I didn’t, I answered your question. You asked why would I ever do anything that isn’t “critiquing patriarchal norms” so I answered.

        4. macavitykitsune
          macavitykitsune July 11, 2013 at 8:26 pm |

          You asked why would I ever do anything that isn’t “critiquing patriarchal norms” so I answered.

          That is actually the exact opposite of what I said. So…okay?

        5. SamLL
          SamLL July 11, 2013 at 8:41 pm |

          Why not quote the exact opposite of what macavitykitsune said, instead of making sense?

          This game is pretty fun, I think we could play it all day.

        6. macavitykitsune
          macavitykitsune July 11, 2013 at 8:50 pm |

          Instead of playing all day, why not slave for the patriarchy?

      2. moorepark
        moorepark July 11, 2013 at 7:25 pm |

        Because I have no desire to tell people what to write, which is why I didn’t, I asked OP why they chose to write what they did instead of filling the void they saw.

      3. moorepark
        moorepark July 11, 2013 at 7:25 pm |

        Because I have no desire to tell people what to write, which is why I didn’t, I asked OP why they chose to write what they did instead of filling the void they saw.

        1. amblingalong
          amblingalong July 11, 2013 at 8:53 pm |

          Perhaps because the OP is a blogger and not a TV show producer?

      4. TomSims
        TomSims July 14, 2013 at 12:19 pm |

        “Why not kickstarter your own blog instead of telling other people what to write about?”

        Excellent Jill, just excellent.

    2. Fat Steve
      Fat Steve July 12, 2013 at 1:15 am |

      so why not kickstarer your own female serial killer web show

      I could do it on the eight-hour flight I have on Wednesday. I could also do an identical one changing the gender of the serial killer. Then I could compare and contrast the reactions to both. Or I could have two glasses of wine and a Xanax and spend the entire flight in a daze.

      1. The Kittehs' Unpaid Help
        The Kittehs' Unpaid Help July 12, 2013 at 4:27 am |

        Choices, choices! :)

  28. Rialmar
    Rialmar July 11, 2013 at 8:51 pm |

    You haven’t actually watched Hannibal, I take it? Because if you had, you would probably have noticed that it has female serial killers and more male than female victims of serial killers. It also avoids the whole terror-porn trope where a show lovingly follows a woman as she screams in terror and attempts to flee the killer, stumbling and becoming ever more helpless for the camera, and writes its female characters in pretty much the same ways it writes its male characters — that is, without all the baggage intended to show a viewer that no matter how competent the character is, she’s still all properly feminine.

    Not to argue that it’s a feminist work for the ages, but it does a lot better on representational issues than you might think. And certainly a lot better than is suggested by lumping it in with shows like The Following and SUV.

    1. Librarygoose
      Librarygoose July 11, 2013 at 9:44 pm |

      I like Hannibal but they’re raising my nerd hackles because they have violated canon.* I now watch it more like I’m spying to see how much wronger they’re making things so I can internet complain. As any nerd is wont to do.

      *I know most of the concept of the show violates canon, but as a nerd I maintain the right to have arbitrary boundaries of canon fuckery.

      1. Rialmar
        Rialmar July 11, 2013 at 10:26 pm |

        This is where it pays to be the kind of geek who has a taste for anime and manga, and who is therefore used to the idea of multiple versions of canon with divergent continuities. You can, as they say, interrogate the text from a different perspective. From which perspective you can then go on to say that they’re not violating canon so much as they are remixing it. Which makes it fun to spot lines from the books that have been taken from one place or character and assigned to another, and compare the ways the lines function to a viewer who doesn’t recognize them with the way they function if you do.

        But I don’t mean to argue with your absolute right to watch with the end goal of internet complaining! I feel the same way about certain other adaptations of book material, so I understand all too well.

        1. Librarygoose
          Librarygoose July 11, 2013 at 11:07 pm |

          But I don’t mean to argue with your absolute right to watch with the end goal of internet complaining!

          Man, without internet complaining I would do nothing all day.

        2. macavitykitsune
          macavitykitsune July 12, 2013 at 2:27 am |

          This is where it pays to be the kind of geek who has a taste for anime and manga, and who is therefore used to the idea of multiple versions of canon with divergent continuities.

          …not that that doesn’t cause flamewars in anime/manga fandom. I was there for the whole FMA: Brotherhood thing, and HOO BOY.

    2. Ll
      Ll July 11, 2013 at 11:21 pm |

      I guess that’s your analysis. Others have disagreed, like this blogger:

      “Violence on “Hannibal” was primarily delivered by men and analyzed by men, with the female characters on the show interacting through the medium of male intervention or male gaze. Part of the joy of “The Silence Of The Lambs” lies in Clarice Sterling herself, who rails against such a male-centric approach in every moment of that film. “Hannibal” couldn’t have had that character, but it could have used that perspective.”

      http://blog.zap2it.com/frominsidethebox/2013/06/m-hannibal-season-1-review-mads-mikkelsens-lecter-and-hugh-dancys-will-grahams-dance-distract-from-other-shortcomings.html

      And this one:

      http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/04/05/hannibal-ken-tucker-on-his-lack-of-appetite-for-nbc-s-serial-killer-drama.html

      1. Ll
        Ll July 12, 2013 at 12:04 am |

        Zap2it also writes:

        “More problematically, the show showed a great deal of violence inflicted upon women without a strong cadre of female characters to shore up the living side of the gender equation.”

      2. Donna L
        Donna L July 12, 2013 at 10:56 am |

        Part of the joy of “The Silence Of The Lambs”

        Yes, it’s a well-made, well-acted movie. But it’s very difficult for me to associate “joy” in any way with a movie that is — notoriously — one of the most grotesquely and harmfully transphobic movies ever made.

        1. Librarygoose
          Librarygoose July 12, 2013 at 6:06 pm |

          Yeah, no matter how much Harris tried to put big neon letters around the whole “JAME GUMB IS NOT TRANS*” part of the book, he was ill-equipped, ham handed and just not knowledgeable enough and should have made Jame just be more like the man he was based off of and left the whole Trans* part out of the book. Or maybe enforced any mention of that aspect in the movie.

        2. Willemina
          Willemina July 13, 2013 at 12:59 pm |

          Yeah, one line from Hannibal about how “he thinks he is,” doesn’t counter every scene with a dressing gown and mirror.

  29. Really?
    Really? July 12, 2013 at 6:25 pm |

    PLEASE USE SPOILER ALERTS.

    Sorry, but it’s really annoying. The Stoker reveal is a straight spoiler and it’s not foreshadowed anywhere else in the article.

    Thanks.

  30. Kaluza Klein
    Kaluza Klein July 15, 2013 at 2:01 am |

    Can’t believe no one’s mentioned Wire in the Blood. It’s on Netflix and has a ton of female serial killers — at least, more than any serial killer show I’ve ever seen, and I watch a lot of them.

  31. Introducing My New Blog: Fem It Up! | Christina Paschyn: Multimedia Journalist in Doha, Qatar

    [...] terrible coverage of rape cases. One of my posts, Jackie the Ripper, even got picked up by Feministe, one of the oldest and most respected feminist blogs around. The others were promoted via Twitter [...]

  32. Jackie the Ripper: Where Are All the Female Serial Killers on TV? | Fem It Up!

    [...] This post appeared on Feministe on July 10, [...]

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