But appropriating the language of the global traffickers in the bodies of little girls in the name of a “good cause” was never going to be a good idea.
‘Innocent. Young. Available. Experience the sensation of buying a girl’. These words serve to further entrench the idea that little girls warrant sexual interest and that you can buy them.
I would go further and suggest that using the photographs of real girls under these slogans is unethical.
Leaving aside the question of whether purchasing a Hannah Montanna backback can rescue these girls from forced marriage, sexual servitude and terrorism, did these little girls and their families understand they would be used in this way?
The way the camera pans up and down the body of one of the girls is creepy.
Writing on the MS blog, Catherine A Traywick makes the case against eroticising small children in advertising even when it’s done in the name of ‘charity’.
Today in totally misguided philanthropy, we have “The Girl Store,” a presumably well-intentioned girl empowerment project that—for some utterly illogical reason—masquerades as a child pornography site.
Head on over to The Girl Store and you’ll be greeted by shaky footage of a disheveled Indian girl smiling bashfully as an unknown cameraperson pans up and down her body, lingering on her little hands, before finally settling on her face. The accompanying text reads:
100% genuine girls
Experience the sensation of buying a girl
….her life back.
…Buy a girl before someone else does.
…why does the sale of notebooks and pencils warrant the clear and deliberate eroticization of small children?
I’m pondering how it is that the Sydney Morning Herald decided to run this piece yesterday headed ‘True to form the drama queens have been holding court again.’
Robert Grant, for AAP – a news service I usually respect – describes how female players really aren’t very good. They are boring to watch, their matches ‘dreary’, but their off-court actions make it all worthwhile. In fact, it is their drama queen behaviour which justifies them being allowed to play at all.
But the women fully deserve their place in the game because they provide off-court entertainment that the men seem intent on avoiding. And they have proved that, while the matches might be a dreary string of error-ridden statistics, women have given us wonderful tales.
Grant then goes onto list all these off-court antics, seemingly oblivious to male players like John McEnroe and others whose behaviour has been far from immaculate over the years.
And what’s with including Kim Clijsters in the drama queen roll call? Clijsters was not being a drama queen when she exposed Channel 7′s Australian Open commentator Todd Woodbridge for his texts to a former number one woman player, in which he said he thought Clijsters was pregnant because she seemed grumpy and her ‘boobs looked bigger’.
Why is he checking out her breasts in the first place?
What Clijsters did deserves to be commended not made fun of in a mocking article. She nailed Woodbridge with style, grace, and humour.
We Heart: Kim Clijsters
This is how Clijster’s actions were characterised on the Ms blog:
Just after tennis player Kim Clijsters beat her opponent in the Australian Open, she scored a major victory for the women of the world. Read the rest here.
But it’s the 21st century and we’re still putting up with true to form articles like that by Robert Grant.
Collective Shout colleague and Managing Director of BodyMatters Australasia Lydia Turner has written an important piece for Healthy Weight Week highlighting the conflicts of interest in anti-obesity research. She urges a health-based, not weight based approach to health.
This week marks the start of ‘Healthy Weight Week,’ brought to you by the Dieticians Association of Australia (DAA).
With the DAA claiming that 61 per cent of Australian adults and 25 per cent of Australian children are either overweight or obese, many people would think this is a great initiative. So why are a growing number of health professionals opposed to this campaign?
It is not well enough known that 95 per cent of obesity research is funded by private industry including Big Pharma. Corporations not only fund research, but entire university departments, charities, and educational programs as well. Seeing corporations jumping into bed with public health initiatives should raise suspicion. It is essentially putting the wolf in charge of the sheep.
Just last year the Centre for Obesity Research and Education (CORE) – a department of Monash University – published a study that found lap-banding procedures were appropriate interventions for obese teenagers as young as 14. What they didn’t reveal, however, was that the study was funded by Allergan, Australia’s largest manufacturer of lap-banding products. In mid-2010, Allergan sought approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to market lap bands to US teens after sponsoring clinical trials, essentially opening up the global teenage market for profit. Read more>>
What to do if you think your child is ‘overweight’
Julie Parker over at Beautiful You, has some good advice for parents who may be concerned about their child’s weight. You can read it here.
A Collective Shout supporter was recently in a mall teeming with children and Christmas shoppers when she was confronted by Hustler T-shirts hanging at the entrance of a Krank Clothing store. According to the Krank website, the company claims to be “Australias largest motox and lifestyle store”. It’s a place where adults and young people would go for all their motor sport gear. They have clothing divisions for men, women, girls and children. But Krank doesn’t just cater for motor sports. It is also a distributor of pornographic apparel, stocking the Hustler brand.
Besides their unashamedly sexualised images of women in porn star poses on men’s t-shirts, which treat women as play things purely for men’s pleasure, Krank also appears to endorse violence against women with slogans such as “Bitches Get Stitches “ and “ Talk Shit, Get Hit”. In other words, some women deserve to be hit, right? Wrong!
If that’s not enough, Hustler also creates rompers for babies, much like the those previously sold by Cotton-On Kids which were the subject of a boycott last year. Hustler’s rompers have slogans such as, “Boobman since day 1“, “Hung like a 5 year old” , “Lil Pimpin” for boys and “Lil F*cking Princess” for baby girls. See psychologist Collett Smart’s article ‘Self-image vs Sexualised image’ for an analysis of the impact of these images on young people as they grow up.
Hustler Clothing & Apparel is proudly distributed throughout Australia, exclusively by Killer Instinct Clothing, which also stocks skateboarding and biking apparel. Larry Flynt who is the president of Larry Flynt Productions which produces pornographic videos and magazines, most notably Hustler, was named by Arena magazine as Number One on the “50 Powerful People in Porn” list. According to Flynt:
There’s no excuse to go about your business in a half-assed way. We are only alive for a finite number of days, and we’re poorer for every hour that we spend in soft-hearted pursuits. We rob ourselves when we submit to diluted entertainments, buy products that lack solid integrity and settle for second-rate gratifications. Life is short, and there’s precious little time to fool around. We’ve taken great pains to compile top-shelf products that allow you to optimise that time. Congratulations on choosing to lead an existence of uncompromising freedom of choice.
Hustler supposedly sells products with “solid integrity”? According to the dictionary, ‘integrity’ means, “the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles”. On freedom of choice, what about our freedom not to have to see Hustler porn in stores where we walk alone or with children? What about our freedom not to be portrayed in a pornographic light? And for the men in our movement, what about their freedom also not to be besieged with this material, or to be stereotyped as loving the objectification of women? And as parents, what about our freedom to keep our children from being the targets for sexualised merchandisers?
But we will exercise our freedom not to support women-hating retailers such as Krank clothing.
Our supporter Michelle wrote to the Westfield shopping centre in Penrith and complained about the images hanging at the front of the store that she had taken photos of. This is what she wrote:
I have sent an email to one of your retailers, Krank Clothing (see below) to request the removal of inappropriate items of clothing from their store. I would assume that as Centre Management, you would be concerned that one of your retailers is stocking highly sexualised clothing that objectifies women and exposes children to inappropriate images. Please read the email below that has been sent to Krank Clothing for more details. I am also happy to supply the mentioned images to you so you know what I am referring to.
EMAIL TO KRANK CLOTHING:
As a local resident of Penrith (and a mum to 2 young boys), I am deeply concerned by the highly sexualised clothing that is currently being sold in your store at Penrith Plaza. Many of the T-shirts sold in your store are demeaning to women and I don’t understand why you would choose to stock such a clothing style. Objectifying women is not art and it should not be labelled ‘trendy’.
I am in my thirties, I am not an old prude. I simply want something better for my suburb and my kids. Items of clothing such as these contribute to the early sexualisation of children and the objectification of women.
I am requesting that you remove items such as the “Hustler” T-shirts and similar styles from your stores. I have attached examples of the t-shirts I am referring to.
The marketing material displayed in the Krank store is also of concern (see attached “Unit_Poster”) and does not belong in a shopping centre display frequented by families. It also adds to the issue of objectification of women and is demeaning to women. How does a almost-naked woman sitting on a bike relate to a piece of men’s clothing?
I ask that you carefully consider this matter and would greatly appreciate your response within 7 days. I will also be forwarding this email to Westfield Penrith Plaza Centre Management outlining the same concerns.
Here’s the weak response Michelle received from centre management (there has been no response from Krank):
Thank you Michelle for your email regarding the Krank Clothing store at Westfield Penrith.
I have raised your concerns with both the Centre Manager and the Retail Manager and we acknowledge your comments.
While some of their products may not be to your liking, they are operating within the boundaries of their lease agreements with Westfield.
However, we will ensure the store manager has been made aware of your comments.
Zoo didn’t deserve my commendation says Girl With a Satchel
Interesting exchange yesterday with my friend and fellow blogger Erica Bartle of Girl With a Satchel.
Erica sent a tweet re a blog post in which she awarded points to Zoo magazine for including AFL footballer Brendan Fevola – he of the leaked Lara Bingle naked picture scandal – in a pre Australia Day list of those Zoo deemed guilty of ‘un-Australian’ behaviour. I responded that I didn’t think the feature genuine – that it was, in fact, a mockery given that Zoo attributed Fevola’s action to causing everything from the breakup of Bingle’s relationship with Michael Clarke, Australia’s subsequent cricket losses and drought in Africa.
By releasing a nude photo of his former fling Lara Bingle to a women’s gossip mag, the Brisbane Lions goose caused the break-up of Aussie golden couple Lara Bingle and Michael Clarke.
(This) caused Clarke to become a rubbish cricketer, and caused the demise of the national cricket team, and caused the value of the dollar to fall, and caused drought in Africa and caused the continuation of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Zoo is making a mockery of Bingle’s experience by saying that what was ‘un-Australian’ was that it ruined their enjoyment of cricket; what was horrific was not how it affected Bingle, but what happened, as a result, to the sport. And I doubt they give a stuff about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, unless it involves pics of ‘hot’ Israeli female soldiers with rifles. There’s little doubt Zoo’s readers regret seeing Fevola’s snap of a vulnerable younger Bingle naked and wet. More likely, Zoo and its readers see men like Fevola and Shane Warne as legends for their behaviour.
Erica then posted this piece, revising her original stance. Where others would dig their heels in and not admit they called it wrong, or conveniently eradicate all traces of the original blog post, Erica wrote a new one with a revised conclusion.
Commendations GWAS. (Maybe one day she will blog about discovering my soft and cuddly side).
Monday Media Study: Lad-mag endorsement v talking point
Media commentator, author and Collective Shoutco-founder Melinda Tankard Reist and I had a DM marathon this morning. We often do. Since meeting Melinda last year, we’ve become regular online sparring partners; she thinks I’m soft, I think she’s too hard-line. But we generally respect each other’s opinions. What’s more, she has research to back up her opinions. Piles of it. And books. And co-collaborators, such as Clive Hamilton, University of NSW academic Nina Funnell and her fellow Collective Shouters.
Pushing the women-hating envelope so far as to reduce women to just flesh
By Daniela Elser, Entertainment Editor
IS this the sickest video ever?
The most misogynistic? Racist?
Kanye West’s shocking new video clip for his song Monster has split critics, fans and commentators since it leaked online recently.
The nearly six-minute clip features an onslaught of depraved scenes: hanged models dangling from the ceiling on chains; West rapping while casually holding a woman’s severed head that is still dripping blood; a bloody amputated hand; and Jay-Z spitting rhymes while a semi-nude woman in heels is splayed across a couch with the first signs of rigor mortis setting in.
The clip is the work of Jake Nava, the mastermind behind Beyonce’s Single Ladies, Kelis’s Milkshake and Usher’s Burn.
Some critics have denounced West’s dark fantasy as pushing the women-hating envelope so far as to reduce women to just flesh.
Social commentator Melinda Tankard Reist has denounced West’s work and started a petition against it, partly sponsored by the Coalition Against Trafficking Women in Australia, which has sought to ban the official release of the video.
“The music industry’s portrayals of women’s pain, suffering, abuse, objectification, and victimisation as valid forms of entertainment are not acceptable,” Reist writes. Read more here.
More than 5000 signatures – let’s double it!
At the time of writing, there were 5,845 signatures on our petition protesting the Monster video. Let’s see if we can double it. Please sign the petition if you haven’t already, and share through your networks.
Nina Funnell, who I’m happy to say is become a regular contributor here on the MTR blog, has written a thoughtful analysis of the dead-women-are-sexy Monster video clip soon to be officially released by rapper Kanye West. It has been encouraging to see the issue attracting global coverage. Here’s Nina’s piece.
Sex, death and Kanye West: music clips need to get real
Supposedly “sexy” music videos are usually not, writes Nina Funnell.
What do you think of music video clips these days? Too sexy? Too raunchy? Too smutty? Not me. I’m going to go out on a limb and say today’s video clips are not sexy enough. In fact, they are not sexy at all. And they never have been.
Watching heavily made-up women squeeze into too tight clothes and ridiculously high heels before grinding back and forth on an imaginary phallus, all while trying to maintain their contrived ‘come-hither’ look and big hair, does not make me think about sexual intimacy, true sensuality or deep and satisfying physical pleasure. It just looks like hard work.
Video clips said to be too sexual rarely offer anything other than a contrived, heavily choreographed and deliberately manufactured version of a hollow and artificial sexuality. It’s all so sad and so predictable.
Advertisement: Story continues below While many commentators argue that video clips over-sexualise women, the real problem is they actually deny the sexuality of women all together. Instead of analysing the clothes and dance moves within these clips, we should look at how desire functions.
As so often in popular culture, women are expected to appear desirable, but to be completely lacking in all desire of their own. The best example of this is Britney Spears in her Hit me baby days and Jessica Simpson circa 2002. Both Spears and Simpson stated they were virgins and intended to remain so until marriage. Meanwhile, they would grind back and forth wearing tiny outfits all designed to titillate. In other words their sexuality was to be consumed and enjoyed by everyone except themselves.
The “sexually rapacious virgin” is just one paradox of our sexualised pop culture. But a while back I began to wonder where our sexualised pop culture is really heading. At some point all the bouncy hair, big boobs and tiny skirts just gets old. These days humping a pole is not so much risqué as passé.
So once sex (or rather, the limited and stereotypical representations of pop-culture sex) gets tired, what becomes the new frontier in risqué representation?
Well, if the new Kanye West clip for his single Monster is anything to go by, sexualised death might just be the answer. In the teaser to the clip, two dead women in lingerie and high heels swing back and forth from a metal chain, hanging from the ceiling. Another two young women are slumped on a bed, like lifeless mannequins. A man advances on them. His intentions are clear. The whole clip is littered with eroticised female corpses.
It’s not surprising really. If sexualising live women has become boring, why not sexualise dead ones?
Of course many people will defend the clip in the name of art. Others will say viewers have the capacity to differentiate between dark fantasy and reality.
But others will disagree. Recently commentator Melinda Tankard-Reist criticised the blatant erotization of female death. In it she writes: “The men don’t seem horrified at all by the female corpses littered through the haunted mansion, the apparent victims of a serial killing. In fact, they seem to quite like it. It seems to turn them on.”
“The clip is not only interested in fetishizing female bodies – it revels in fetishizing female pain, female passivity, female suffering and female silence. The ultimate female is the quiet, passive female – a mannequin – who accepts violence, abuse and suffering while remaining hot and sexy.”
Since then a petition has been set up against the full clip being released.
So what are we to make of it? Is this just another articulation of our Twilight and True Blood inspired preoccupation with death and the eroticization of lifeless flesh? Or is there something unusually twisted, grotesque and misogynistic about depicting and sexualising dead looking women in this context?
Perhaps Kanye West is merely trying to be controversial and daring in an industry where sex (at least sex with living women) has become passe and predictable.
If so, he’s a bit behind the times. After all, the fashion industry has been depicting and sexualising passive, pale, expressionless and lifeless looking women for eons. Models with skeletal bodies and vacant stares have been the standard in high-end fashion advertisements for some time now.
The irony is that if we’re talking about what most red-blooded heterosexual men actually find attractive, it is rarely a sickly looking corpse. Most men I know are attracted to women who are active and confident in exploring their own sexual pleasure.
Maybe one day, video-clips will get truly radical and start offering representations of actual, three-dimensional females complete with realistic sexual agency.
Nina Funnell is a researcher in the Journalism and Media Research Centre at the University of NSW. Read the piece online here.
She is posed childlike, with a childish fringe and in her pyjamas which are open at the top to reveal just a little breast but not too much because that would undermine the illusion of Aniston being young and sweet. In the first image, her nose appears to have been airbrushed to make it look more button-nose in appearance. The teddy bear is the final touch, further suggesting carefree innocence.
In the second image she is reclining with the teddy, possibly topless, looking even more pre-pubescent, her face doll-like. But notice the expression in the first – perhaps she knows more than we think? Borrowing from an increasing popular genre of pornography, which Gail Dines exposes in Pornland, the suggestion is that girls like this really aren’t so innocent. They can’t wait to ‘grow up’ and to be initiated into adult ways.
Thanks Jennifer. You could have said no. You could have said, actually can I appear as myself rather than as hybrid child-woman? How come Brad Pitt is never asked to pose as a little boy with a toy fire truck? Could I be represented as a professional actress and not as an infantalised woman and (radical idea) – could I also look like myself please? (extreme airbrushing has rendered her barely recognisable).
Beauty Pageant Child Abuse
And here’s a 5-year-old girl being tortured in preparation for a beauty pageant in which she will be made to look much older than she is. Watching this hideous clip, from the TV show Toddlers & Tiaras, I felt like a witness to child abuse (“don’t tear it!”, the little girl pleads). The child is powerless. She has no control, her desires over-ridden by powerful adults. The mother admits that on a previous occasion her daughter was burnt by the hot wax and that she holds her down.
“Toddlers & Tiaras” is a petri dish of sexualization. Little girls are taught, often times forced by their domineering mothers, to act coquettishly, learn suggestive dance routines, wear sexualized costumes and bathing suits, endure hours of hair and make-up, and are even put on restrictive diets in order to lose weight for competition. This is perverse. While TLC continues to air “Toddlers & Tiaras”, the network becomes an agent of this sexualization.
The toxic culture of the pageant world, the judging of beauty, is confusing to young children who have not yet reached the emotional-intellectual milestones of understanding reality and competition. These little girls become infantilized women as their parents and coaches do whatever it takes to win that crown and of course, the money. The time alone spent prepping for pageants robs girls of their childhood, time that should be spent learning and playing and socializing with friends. Teaching young girls a very narrow version of beauty, transforming their bodies so that their beauty can be measured and judged, or to use their sexualized bodies to earn money for the family is disgusting…When you add to this the chemically dangerous spray tans, butt glue, nail glue, eyelash glue, hairspray, and cosmetics applied to these tiny, developing bodies, it is not a stretch to say these pageant programs are both emotionally and physically abusive.
Girlish Jennifer. Womanly child pageant entrants. Two sides of the one coin.
Cold term cannot disappear central experience of pregnancy and birth
Gestational carrier is an ugly term
THE objectification of women’s bodies and commodification of childbirth came together yesterday in a single antiseptic phrase contained in the announcement of a second child for actress Nicole Kidman and her musician husband Keith Urban.
The baby’s birth three weeks ago took even dedicated “Our Nic” watchers by surprise, including Woman’s Day which had the couple adopting a Haitian child.
“Our family is truly blessed . . . to have been given the gift of baby Faith Margaret. No words can adequately convey the incredible gratitude that we feel for everyone who was so supportive throughout this process, in particular our gestational carrier.”
In those last two words, the woman whose body nurtured this child for nine months is stripped of humanity. The phrase is reminiscent of other terms popular in the global baby-production industry, such as suitcase, baby capsule, oven and incubator.
The detached language views women as disposable uteruses. This dismantling of motherhood denies the psychological and physiological bonds at the heart of pregnancy.
The euphemisms soothe: don’t worry, there is no mother whose voice the baby hears, no mother whose blood carries nutrients to the developing child, whose heart the child hears. No mother feeling first kicks, whose breasts swell, whose entire body and mind prepare for her arrival.
US ethicist Wesley Smith said he was reminded of “Dune’s ‘axlotl tanks’, which are women who are lobotomised and then their bodies used as gestational carriers for clones.”
But doctors prefer it.
On Australia Talks Back, November 9, 2009, Canberra IVF specialist Martyn Stafford-Bell said “gestational carrier pregnancy” was the preferred term.
Surrogacy was a good solution for women “unable to house a pregnancy” and a woman carrying a child with no genetic connection understood “she is, in fact, an incubator”. Some surrogate mothers use these terms to distance, because surrogacy erodes the inherent maternal-fetal relationship.
“I am strictly a hotel,” one said.
Donna Hill, who experienced a toxemic pregnancy followed by a traumatic induced labour which she hoped to forget, said, “I told myself I was just an incubator. I was just going into an operation and not giving birth.”
Sydney surrogate mother Shona Ryan told a Canberra conference: “I had to forget I was pregnant. There was not the same joy and wonderment. In some ways I felt sorry for this baby that it didn’t receive the same attention [as my others]. I had to deny the pleasures of pregnancy.”
After the birth: “My subconscious, my body, my emotions, knew I’d given birth and were screaming out for that baby. I kept having the urge to tell people, ‘I’ve had a baby!’
“The personal cost to me and my family [was too high]. I came to the conclusion I couldn’t recommend surrogacy to anyone.”
Of course the birth of any baby is worthy of celebration. But that doesn’t mean we should avoid hard questions about the fragmentation of motherhood, about a child who may wonder about their birth mother and why she is not raising them.
We can’t keep our Eyes Wide Shut about the exploitation of women in countries such as India where a booming surrogacy industry, described as womb slavery, attracts rich foreigners. And questions need to be asked more broadly about the global trade in the use of gametes in a range of reproductive procedures.
The Daily Mail recently ran “The brutal fertility factories trading in British mothers’ dreams” to describe vulnerable women trading in the only valuable thing they possessed: their fertility.
In the US commodification of a child knows few limits. Journalist Bill Wyndham, pretending to be a single, HIV-positive gay man, was told by a surrogacy company he’d make a perfect dad.
He was, however, not allowed to adopt a puppy from the dog pound.
We don’t know the background of the surrogate mother. Was she a student trying to pay off college loans? Had she given birth for other couples? Did she have the option of changing her mind? Will there be any future contact between the mother and child? Does she have other children who are asking where the new baby went?
Some women have been unable to relinquish. Mary Beth Whitehead, US surrogate mother in the famous Baby M case, said: “Something took over. I think it was just being a mother.”
Jane Smith from Sydney said of the son she carried: “I couldn’t let him go.”
Another surrogate mother has said: “In the beginning it is easy to see things in an unrealistic way. When there is no real baby, it is easy to be idealistic.”
In 1997 a baby called “Evelyn” became Australia’s first litigated surrogacy case when her surrogate mother couldn’t give her up.
The raft of celebrities hiring out surrogates to have babies for them has became almost a modern day form of wet nursing.
But the lack of objective evidence about the long-term impact of surrogacy on the surrogate mothers, the children and the families of the commissioning parents is concerning.
The process of pregnancy, labour and delivery followed by summoning extraordinary reserves of strength to surrender that baby, cannot be reduced to the science fiction that the woman who does all this is merely a “gestational carrier”.
What’s entertaining about women in lingerie hanging by their necks on chains? What’s artful about images of drugged, unconscious women about to be sexually assaulted?
It’s misogyny, graphic and simple.
Instead of artistic expression, political and social commentator Zerlina Maxwell described Kanye West’s music video for Monster as “a rape scenario set to a soundtrack.”
Yet that’s not what many commentators are saying about the gruesome and degrading images in the rapper’s video, which has yet to be officially released even though it’s all over the Internet either in full or in part.
West has suggested that the video’s necrophilia and brutality are aimed at generating controversy and sales. Still, there’s a profusion of intellectualizing and rationalizing about the video.
Much of that commentary includes attempts to absolve African-American men from criticism of their misogynist lyrics and the grotesque images of violence perpetrated on white women because of the history of slavery and colonialism.
Among the most inflated and convoluted praise for depravity as art comes from progressives. Salon.com’s Tracy Clark-Flory deliberately set aside the question of misogyny and wrote that the video “offers a fascinating Rorschach test of our current sexual culture.”
Writing on The Atlantic’s blog, Chris Jackson deflected the question of misogyny saying he couldn’t answer it given all the other examples in popular culture.
Instead he fatuously wrote: “Kanye is like [French Renaissance writer] Montaigne, who said of himself that he doesn’t record being, but passing … The most difficult and most intriguing aspect of Kanye as a rapper is that you never know whether he’s celebrating or satirizing an idea or doing both at the same time.”
However, it’s worth noting that Jackson’s Atlantic colleague Ta-Nehisi Coates disagrees.
Coates described the video as “boring racism, boring sexism that hearkens back to the black power macho of Amiri Baraka and Eldridge Cleaver at their worst … the work of a failed provocateur boorishly brandishing his ancient affects.”
…Far from breaking new ground, West’s video only sinks to a deeper level of depravity, bringing the mainstream closer to what’s come to be known as torture porn.
It’s part of a growing social tolerance or numbness to violence against women. Kathleen Lahey describes it as “the remapping of male primacy onto contemporary culture.”
Lahey, a Queen’s University professor and expert in law and sexuality, has no doubt West’s video fits the definition of hate speech under Canadian criminal law, which makes it illegal to incite public hatred or advocate genocide of an identifiable group.
Antoinette Jones – Principal – Mitcham Girls High School
“Intelligent, passionate, brilliant, fearless… I could not recommend her more highly”
Dr Michael Carr-Gregg
“You continue to reset my shock meter…”
“As a teacher and parent I recommend all parents, in fact all people, to attend a talk by Melinda- it will open your eyes and awaken your subconscious.”
Heather Douglas – Parent – Pembroke School
“Melinda’s presentations to our parents, staff and full day workshops to students was inspirational, transforming the attitudes and thinking of all involved”
Paul Teys – Principal – Hunter Valley Grammar
“Melinda Tankard Reist’s presentation to Middle and Upper School students at Pymble Ladies’ College was absolutely brilliant!”
Justine Hodgson – English Faculty, Pymble Ladies’ College
“Melinda Tankard Reist has had a transformational affect on our school.”
Ms Stephanie McConnell, Principal – Turramurra High School
“Melinda Tankard Reist is at the forefront of helping…educate the public on the link between pornography and violence…” – Di Macleod, Director, Gold Coast Centre Against Sexual Violence
“As you read, be prepared to feel both grief and rage.” Robert Jensen
“These accounts are among the most unsettling you will ever read.” Steve Biddulph
“This powerful and humane book is a breakthrough…Big Porn Inc shows us we are poisoning our own spirits.” – Steve Biddulph
“A landmark publication” – Clive Hamilton
Purchase Big Porn Inc, Getting Real, Faking It, Men of Honour, Sexts Texts & Selfies, Raising Girls, Raising Boys, MTR DVD, Ruby Who? DVD & book, Girl Wise guide to friends, Girl Wise guide to being you, Girl Wise guide to life and Girl Wise guide to taking care of your body, and the new Wise Guys for the combined discounted price of $250.
‘The foremost authority in Australia cyber safety lays it on the line and challenges parents to find their digital spine.’ – Dr Michael Carr-Gregg
Whether it is problems with friends, worrying about how you look or just feeling a bit down in the dumps – these books are written especially for you – to help you in your journey. Purchase all four together and save $18.50 on postage! Author: Sharon Witt
In this DVD, Melinda takes us on a visual tour of popular culture. “Melinda’s presentation leaves audiences reeling. She delivers her message with a clarity and commonsense without peer.” – Steve Biddulph, author, Raising Boys, Raising Girls
In this easy-to-read updated book, Steve Biddulph shares powerful stories and give practical advice about every aspect of boyhood.
“Overflowing with incisive understandings…a comprehensive and in-depth guide.” – Dr Michael Carr-Gregg, Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychologist
Men of Honour -written by Glen Gerreyn- encourages and inspires young men to take up the challenge to be honourable. Whether at school, in sport, at work or in relationships, we must develp our character to achieve success and experience the thrills life has on offer.
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“Getting Real contains a treasure trove of information and should be mandatory reading for all workers with young people in health, education and welfare” – Dr Michael Carr-Gregg, Adolescent Psychologist
Do you read women’s lifestyle magazines? Have you thought about how magazines might affect you when you read them? Faking It reflects the body of academic research on magazines, mass media, and the sexual objectification of women.
Ruby Who? is the sweet and innocent story of a little girl’s adventure in re-discovering her identity. Ruby wishes for so many things and dreams of being like others. Will she end up forgetting how to just be herself?
Ruby Who? is the sweet and innocent story of a little girl’s adventure in re-discovering her identity. Ruby wishes for so many things and dreams of being like others. Will she end up forgetting how to just be herself?
Defiant Birth challenges widespread medical, and often social aversion to less than perfect pregnancies or genetically different babies. It also features women with disabilities who were discouraged from becoming pregnant at all.