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Feminism because why not make a thread for it?
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Arkhron



Joined: 19 Feb 2013
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 19, 2013 5:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry for the wall text:

Quote:

#2. You'll Never See a Woman Get Her Brains Blown Out
(Not in an American movie, anyway.)

[The following entry comes from a buddy and friend of the site, Mike Dillon, who has a legit grown-up job as a professor at USC. This is his observation, so I'm letting him put it in his own words, which are much smarter than my words. I've done my best to break up the academic language with pictures and captions featuring the kind of jokes and hard-hitting observations you expect from Cracked.com.]

The bullet to the head, accompanied visually by dramatic blood/brain splatter, is associated with some of film's most shocking moments, such as the bathroom scene in Full Metal Jacket, and/or punctuates the visceral impact of a death for the audience -- particularly if that gunshot comes unexpectedly, e.g., Samuel L. Jackson's death in Goodfellas, Brad Pitt's in Burn After Reading, or DiCaprio's in The Departed.

However, that kind of graphic "headshot" seldom seems to occur among female characters; that is, even when a woman is unambiguously shot in the face or head, although we may see a bullet hole afterward, it remains exceptionally rare to see the same degree of background splatter in mainstream dramatic narratives as we do with the men.

Case in point: In a YouTube video titled "100 Movies 100 Headshots" (of course this exists), which compiles bullets to the head/face with varying degrees of gruesomeness, only two victims are women. A sequel video, "Another 100 Movies Another 100 Headshots," features between six and nine identifiably female victims, depending on whether you count monsters and zombies.

I think it's fair to say, first of all, that bullets to the head are generally received as "more violent" (certainly more likely to receive an R rating) than bullets to the body. If the headshot is deliberate, it may suggest an execution, and therefore a heartlessness on the part of the shooter. Headshots also carry a sense of "difficulty" or "exclusivity" with them, given that the head is a smaller target than the body; this is evident in video games in which successful headshots earn greater achievements.

This further suggests that a bullet to the head is an unusual or unnatural act in excess of what it takes to shoot the body -- it is about skill and precision devoid of the sloppiness and emotional trauma that may come with murder. Why, then, is this "exceptional" form of violence reserved for men?

Some of the recent debates on gun control attempt to put a precise finger on the very imprecise assertion that there are deeply cultural roots for American gun violence -- after all, violent films and video games, even widespread gun ownership itself, do not result in the same levels of gun violence in other industrial countries. While not positing any definitive answers, I believe that Jack's recent article touches on an interesting point when noting that guns in America are shown to compensate for some kind of crisis in masculinity (or patriarchy generally). We might argue that if guns equal manliness, then a well-placed, well-timed shot to the head is an impressive display of one's masculine command of the weapon. Shooting for the head takes rational calculation and physical control of the firearm. Emotional indecision (coded stereotypically as "feminine") will lead to failure or misfire.

Let's apply this logic to a female shooter. In The Matrix, Trinity blows a man's head away ("Dodge This"). She has already demonstrated that she can fight alongside the best of the men, and it culminates in this point-blank execution (although there is no splatter) that, each time I've seen the film with a crowd, elicits cheers from the audience. The scene confers the status of "badass" to her already androgynous characterization. Significantly, as some have criticized, Trinity becomes increasingly relegated to the traditional feminine role of lover/supporter after this scene, which belies her masculine proficiency in combat.

But we're talking about the victims, not the shooters. If shooting someone through the head makes you a badass, it suggests greater weakness, even shame, on the victim's part. To be shot in the head is to be "owned" and reduced to nothing -- as seen in action films, a hero can be shot virtually anywhere on his body and still stagger on to continue the fight. A shot to the head, however, ends things right there. And this, to my mind, is where gun violence most reveals its phallocentricity -- wherein "fucking someone" and "fucking someone up" converge to produce this particular form of "fucked up" ultraviolence. Take a listen to the thunderous Nine Inch Nails song "Big Man With a Gun," which explicitly links the power of firing a gun to hyper-masculine fantasies of sexual violation. Through this metaphor, the song clearly assumes that the combination of sexual power with firepower produces a total domination over another person. Interestingly, the victim's gender in the song is not specified.

If NIN correctly likens the joys, entitled sense of power, and recklessness of using a gun with those of using a dick, then gun fighting between men really amounts to a dick-measuring contest. Being shot in the head, then, is a form of emasculation. Blood splatter invokes a kind of perverse "money shot" that underscores how thoroughly someone has been made the object of another person's violence. Shooting someone in the head would seem to guarantee "making him his bitch" -- it is, in essence, the use of a specifically masculine tool to make the other person wholly submissive. People have commented for ages on the symbolism of society's weapons of war often being phallic in shape and design ... following the logic that firing a gun is a form of masculine assertion of power, shooting another man in the head and dropping him dead, as opposed to chipping away at his strong, resilient body, is an ultimate form of domination over other masculine competition.
The reason that we so rarely see women getting their brains splattered? Masculine violation of, and domination over, a woman occurs on her body and not her head ... which, of course, opens a huge, separate can of worms ...


I find this section of the article brilliant, never have considered this before. The source is http://www.cracked.com/blog/4-bizarrely-specific-rules-that-exist-in-movie-universes_p2/
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MelancholicIdealist



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PostPosted: Sun Apr 21, 2013 3:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I guess I've got something to say about feminism and here seems to be the place to do it.

I don't always agree with the viewpoints presented in Sinfest or the line being towed. I don't know that I can get behind a lot people who call themselves feminists.

But I do know one thing: when I was 12 I made a dumb joke.

A dumb joke about a girl in my class. A girl who had never done a thing to me. A girl who, at that age, was probably already dealing with body image issues and didn't need groups of snickering boys making them worse. Why did I do it? I don't know. It was dumb and I wish I hadn't after it happened.

And I didn't get punished for it. Not really. A talk with a teacher and a phone call home at best I can remember. It was mostly forgotten after that. 'Mostly' isn't 'completely'. I always kind of felt bad about it. I tried to put it behind me but it was always rattling around in the back of my mind like so much baggage.

Years later I'm in high school. Grade 11 English. I loved that class. Writing, discussing books and ideas. The teacher was a nice lady. She hosted a student book club at lunch I'd often attend. We got along better than I did with most of my teachers and I considered her a friend and mentor.

One day as the bell rings I'm packing up my bag to head to lunch when the girl who I made the joke about years ago entered the classroom. I'd not been in the same class with her since we were 12. She was well on her way to becoming a lovely young woman, the kind of girl who wouldn't give me the time of day in high school; by that time I had my own fair share of body image issues.

She spoke briefly with my English teacher before I heard her say "bye mom" and leave. Yes, she was my teacher's daughter.

Because my teacher went by her maiden name professionally, I never knew until that point. I don't think she ever knew I was the boy who insulted her daughter. From then on, that was always present in my mind during English class.

My English teacher once called me "one of the most thoughtful and pleasant young men" she'd ever taught. I didn't have the courage to correct her.

High school was half a lifetime ago for me. I still remember the girl. I still remember the joke. I hope she doesn't. I hope that she didn't let dumb jokes shape her life.

And that's pretty much all I have to say about feminism.
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Samsally



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PostPosted: Sun Apr 21, 2013 5:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If literally the entirety of what you know about feminism is a personal story from when you were twelve; it sounds like you've got some reading to do.

Conviniently, we have this here 200+ page thread full of links with thoughtful articles and also horrible horrible arguments on the topic.
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Heretical Rants



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PostPosted: Sun Apr 21, 2013 8:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not even sure what that anecdote even has to do with feminism
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Samsally



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PostPosted: Sun Apr 21, 2013 10:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Me either. I was trying to be gracious.

Guilt over body shaming, I guess. This is such a horrible place to come to for absolution, though.
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Darqcyde



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PostPosted: Sun Apr 21, 2013 10:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, the whole "I don't agree with some feminism stuff you guys are saying, but I was an ass to a girl fifteen years ago (or so) and never apologized, yet still feel bad about it--that's what I KNOW about feminism" is bizarre to say the least. Is he sorry? Is he not? Is there a point to any of what he posted?

When it comes down to it, it seems like it's REALLY still bothering him, even though it was a "half a lifetime ago." I suggest that if you want absolution, look her up an facebook or something, recount back to her everything you've said here, beg for her forgiveness, and hope and pray that she responds in someway. Just please, please recognize that any actions you take are purely, selfishly motivated and will, in all likelihood, in no way benefit her. If you can't recognize this reality, don't bother contacting her.
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Samsally



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PostPosted: Mon Apr 22, 2013 12:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I dunno man, I gotta disagree with you there, Darq. As someone who was a shit to someone in middle school as well... don't bring it back up, odds are she either doesn't care anymore, or doesn't want to be reminded. Live with it. Do better next time.

Probably in the future try to avoid spilling your guts about it on a forum with a reputation for hostility in a thread about feminism, right after dismissing feminism.
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Darqcyde



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PostPosted: Mon Apr 22, 2013 12:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Samsally wrote:
I dunno man, I gotta disagree with you there, Darq. As someone who was a shit to someone in middle school as well... don't bring it back up, odds are she either doesn't care anymore, or doesn't want to be reminded. Live with it. Do better next time.

Probably in the future try to avoid spilling your guts about it on a forum with a reputation for hostility in a thread about feminism, right after dismissing feminism.

Well, yeah, this is actually what I was getting at, sorry if that wasn't clear. The odds of it going badly are far greater than it going well. Also, like you said, his posting here, in the manner in which he did, is borderline pants-on-head-retarded, if not also insulting to everyone who's contributed to this thread.
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Samsally



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PostPosted: Mon Apr 22, 2013 1:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah okay, no worries.
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Snorri



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PostPosted: Mon Apr 22, 2013 1:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I done a woman a wrong turn once, man. I feels your pain, bro.
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Dennis J. Squidbunny



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PostPosted: Mon Apr 22, 2013 2:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Calling someone a retard in a thread about feminism. You stay classy, Darq.

That said, yeah, if that is what you think feminism is you're a bit lost there, pal. Samsally is completely right when she says do better next time.

I remember a year or two ago I met a dude I had pretty mercilessly bullied in primary school and there we were twenty years on -- he got bullied by a lot of people, but I was a nerd as well as I always looked back on my behaviour towards him as a betrayal. He was in a workshop I was running and at the end we did the 'are you...' thing, and we talked. I apologised for primary school and he became very quiet and then laughed and said he didn't remember any of it. He clearly remembered all of it, and didn't need me bringing it all up again. We talk from time to time.

Now, my question to you is, does my story reflect feminism in some way?

Because, really, one of the worst habits the manosphere has is starting a conversation with YEAH WELL FEMINISM and then instantly steering their sentence towards themselves. Is that what you're doing?
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Snorri



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PostPosted: Mon Apr 22, 2013 2:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yo for real though. This is exactly why I love this forum. This guy just comes in with "yo feminism bro I dunno about that but I did realize that bullying people is kinda a dick thing to do. I liked Sinfest when it was still immature yo, why this guy gotta be all serious!" and I can't stop laughing.

Oh god I love that story.
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stripeypants



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PostPosted: Mon Apr 22, 2013 2:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Would you say it is a cool story? I would say it is a cool story.

In my own experience, I've said really stupid things I later found out are offensive, and I am bothered by the fact I can't timetravel to go explain to all those people that I eventually learned and became a more awesome person. But I keep the actual things to myself unless I'm in a conversation specifically about the stupid things white people say when they don't know any better - and there had better be some kind of useful purpose for that thread, not just some kind of laugh or a feel good wibble over how enlightened we have become.
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Snorri



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PostPosted: Mon Apr 22, 2013 2:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

MelancholicIdealist wrote:
I guess I've got something to say about feminism and here seems to be the place to do it.

I don't always agree with the viewpoints presented in Sinfest or the line being towed. I don't know that I can get behind a lot people who call themselves feminists.

OH SHIT SON YOU ARE WISE!
Quote:

But I do know one thing: when I was 12 I made a dumb joke.


A dumb joke about a girl in my class. A girl who had never done a thing to me. A girl who, at that age, was probably already dealing with body image issues and didn't need groups of snickering boys making them worse. Why did I do it? I don't know. It was dumb and I wish I hadn't after it happened.

Man you are a dick.
Quote:

And I didn't get punished for it. Not really. A talk with a teacher and a phone call home at best I can remember. It was mostly forgotten after that. 'Mostly' isn't 'completely'. I always kind of felt bad about it. I tried to put it behind me but it was always rattling around in the back of my mind like so much baggage.

Yeah man bullying is rough on the bully too man.


Quote:
Years later I'm in high school. Grade 11 English. I loved that class. Writing, discussing books and ideas. The teacher was a nice lady. She hosted a student book club at lunch I'd often attend. We got along better than I did with most of my teachers and I considered her a friend and mentor.


Years later I am so boss.
Quote:

One day as the bell rings I'm packing up my bag to head to lunch when the girl who I made the joke about years ago entered the classroom. I'd not been in the same class with her since we were 12. She was well on her way to becoming a lovely young woman, the kind of girl who wouldn't give me the time of day in high school; by that time I had my own fair share of body image issues.


Man she got pretty and you got fat? Fuck that bitch!

Quote:
She spoke briefly with my English teacher before I heard her say "bye mom" and leave. Yes, she was my teacher's daughter.


OH SHIT SOME USUAL SUSPECTS LEVEL KIND OF TWIST! AWW SHIT I DID NOT SEE THAT COMING!

Quote:

Because my teacher went by her maiden name professionally, I never knew until that point. I don't think she ever knew I was the boy who insulted her daughter. From then on, that was always present in my mind during English class.

SHE GOT A MOM????
Quote:

My English teacher once called me "one of the most thoughtful and pleasant young men" she'd ever taught. I didn't have the courage to correct her.


Yeah I got called awesome by my high school teacher.
Quote:

High school was half a lifetime ago for me. I still remember the girl. I still remember the joke. I hope she doesn't. I hope that she didn't let dumb jokes shape her life.


Ah the good old days.

Quote:

And that's pretty much all I have to say about feminism.


THAT'S FUCKING IT??? That can't be a reasonable strategy to have in your life. You can't deal with issues by just recounting an occurrence in your life and then not do anything. That's ridiculous.
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stripeypants



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PostPosted: Mon Apr 22, 2013 2:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I dunno. I think recounting that one time you ate a sandwich is a great addition to discussions about food insecurity.
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