uni club event/party - office hoes and CEOs

(41 Posts)
beansmum Tue 05-Mar-13 20:29:30

Am I right to be bothered by this? (Yes, I am - you should see the posters). But is it worth complaining, and who would I complain to? And how would I word my complaint - I've never complained about anything in my life, but this has really annoyed me for some reason.

snowshapes Tue 05-Mar-13 20:54:57

Does your institution have a Student Representative Council responsible for clubs and societey should advise.

Secondly, whoever in the institution is responsible for Equality and Diversity. Policies should apply to student events as well, I think.

In terms of wording, hoes is degrading to female students and the equation of CEO with male ,presumably, reinforces gender stereotypes and inequality?

snowshapes Tue 05-Mar-13 20:56:47

Sorry on phone. It has eaten some of the first sentence. First bit should read SRC should advise.

Sunnywithshowers Tue 05-Mar-13 20:59:58

I'd also suggest complaining to the Student Union, and if they have a Women's Officer / Officer for Equality and Diversity, so much the better.

beansmum Tue 05-Mar-13 21:25:57

The students' association doesn't appear to have anyone responsible for equality/diversity. Options are events coordinator - presumably responsible for clubs, or welfare coordinator. I might try going directly to the president of the club that organised the event and/or the president of the SA. Or just write a letter to the student magazine and wait for the responses calling me an angry, man-hating bitch with no sense of humour.

EmmelineGoulden Wed 06-Mar-13 11:14:02

If all fails at your Union you could try The NUS Women's Campaign.

Trekkie Wed 06-Mar-13 20:30:28

Yes you are right to be bothered by that.

Don't know what to suggest though.

ChairmanWow Wed 06-Mar-13 22:02:44

Is there really not a women's officer? I think this is disgraceful, basically saying women are sluts and not worthy or capable of being the boss. Don't fear being called humourless, this is just demeaning and you're right to challenge it.

FastidiaBlueberry Wed 06-Mar-13 22:44:01

This is so fucking shit.

There was one of these last year and it got a whole load of flak, made mainstream media. And still colleges are promoting this.

It's so shit.

beansmum Wed 06-Mar-13 22:54:36

I've emailed the president of the students' association saying I wasn't sure if she was the right person to address my concerns to but there didn't seem to be anyone more appropriate.

I'm in NZ - maybe we have differently structured support services in unis. Or maybe there is someone I should speak to but I just can't find their details.

namechangeguy Thu 07-Mar-13 11:35:49

If these events are so abhorrent, surely no women will attend. This message will get through to the organisers, as the event will be a disaster, and they wont run any more. Problem solved.

PromQueenWithin Thu 07-Mar-13 13:58:55

NCG, the tone of your post seems to suggest that those of us who disagree with the underlying message of this event are being a bit silly. Is that what you intended to come across?

Because I'd lay money on young female students not yet having had that many of the frustrating experiences that have taught I and others on this thread what society really thinks of us as women and our role. So, they'll see it as fun and attend, and if nobody challenges it, then it won't ever occur to them to think beyond the surface jokey message.

namechangeguy Thu 07-Mar-13 15:36:27

When I was at uni, everbody had political views of one flavour or another. I have been told on here umpteen times that many, many young women are following feminism, so it is entirely possible that the students are fully clued up on the implications of the event. Uni students by definition are some of the brighter members of society.

I'd be surprised if anyone attended an event they found tasteless or offensive.

PromQueenWithin Thu 07-Mar-13 16:32:44

Of course, you're correct NCG. Not sure how it's relevant to how the OP can act upon her views though. Unless you're suggesting that she should do nothing because if young students find it offensive they just won't attend, problem solved. And if they attend in sufficient numbers for the organisers to find the event worthwhile, then obviously it's fine...?

MechanicalTheatre Thu 07-Mar-13 16:42:51

Many women will attend. Guaranteed. Kudos from the patriarchy for going along with their shite, isn't it?

I complained to my SU because they used a poster with two fully clothed men and two scantily clad women. Since then, all posters have been non-sexist.

Complain complain complain.

FastidiaBlueberry Thu 07-Mar-13 22:09:53

Men use the "well other women go along with it so you feminists are wrong" argument all the time.

So boring. And so useful. Set women up to do stuff men want them to (by making their lives more difficult of they don't) and then use those women's compliance as proof that there is no problem and feminists are just bitching about nothing

PromQueenWithin Thu 07-Mar-13 22:26:54

Well, quite.

beansmum Thu 07-Mar-13 23:05:53

Lots of people went to this event, it was yesterday (or possibly the day before) and tickets were sold out. I don't know the numbers but I'm assuming there were plenty of women there.

I'm pretty sure most of the women who attended would disagree with the message the theme sends. The problem is it wasn't anything out of the ordinary - this kind of thing is so normal that you don't even notice or you convince yourself it's not worth bothering about. And sometimes you realise staying home won't change anything and will only make your friends think you're weird. Which is important when you're 19. It's still important to me and I'm 31.

HarrietSchulenberg Thu 07-Mar-13 23:16:17

SU ran a "Pull a Pig" night a couple of years ago in Freshers Week. Equality and Diversity Officer absolutely roasted them as did University big bods. This year the SU Exec team are mostly women and events have been considerably better (better organised, better promoted, more inclusive and better attended).

namechangeguy Fri 08-Mar-13 09:53:16

I do understand why some people find this distasteful (not that that is important). Would it matter if the women attending had gone dressed in business suits, and the men dressed in fishnets etc. a la Rocky Horror? Does anyone know if this happened? Students were never averse to dressing up in the old days.

And the point about 'other women go along with it, so feminists are wrong' is a moot point. The women going along with it are human being with reasons of their own. The men are irrelevant. If anyone has a problem with this stuff, the women are the ones you should be concentrating on. What about standing outside the event and talking to women as they enter? You may gain a better understanding of their motivations, and vice versa.

PromQueenWithin Fri 08-Mar-13 11:09:39

NCG, aren't you the poster that likes the video game analogy to explain privilege? If so, then I don't really get why you're arguing that if women are happy to go along with their oppression then that's OK.

You've said that "the women going along with it are human being with reasons of their own. The men are irrelevant." Perhaps the individual men aren't relevant, but patriarchal culture that has men as power brokers and women as sexy ornaments is.

namechangeguy Fri 08-Mar-13 11:16:31

Re the video game thing, that isn't me.

Cultures can change. Perhaps the students don't see the culture that my generation grew up with as relevant to them. Perhaps they see your views as outdated. I don't know. However, unless you talk to these women, you will never know. So, in response to the OP, my suggestion would be to attend a similar event and talk to the attendees. Enquire, discuss, debate. It has to be more productive than sitting here arguing the toss.

PromQueenWithin Fri 08-Mar-13 11:22:33

Cultures can indeed change, and most of us on this thread seem to agree that a culture that has women as Office Hoes and men as CEOs should change.

Personally, I enjoy the discussion and debate on this board and find it extremely productive in terms of developing and challenging my thinking on feminism. I don't need to be told what's a productive activity to engage in, thanks all the same.

MechanicalTheatre Fri 08-Mar-13 11:48:49

NCG, I am in this environment, I'm at university atm and most of my course mates are in their early twenties. The way a lot of them (women and men) talk about women is horrible - if they're not ugly, they're slags. It's Rihanna's fault she got beaten up. Getting dressed up in a short skirt during the day = slut. Doing it at night = fine.

However, there are also plenty of women and men who do not talk about women like that.

You can't say that it is just a generational thing. I think that it is more polarised now - there is both a push against sexism and a pull towards it and less middle ground.

namechangeguy Fri 08-Mar-13 12:54:53

'I don't need to be told what's a productive activity to engage in, thanks all the same.'

My suggestion was to beansmum, who asked how she should complain. I thought it might be a bit productive than a letter. It wasn't directed at you, Promqueen.

Mech, is there a particular reason for this polarisation in your experience? Is it by class, region (I assume you are in the UK), educational background? Or is there no common denominator?

PromQueenWithin Fri 08-Mar-13 13:09:12

OK, thanks for clarifying.

WilsonFrickett Fri 08-Mar-13 13:17:08

I don't know about unis in NZ but if there isn't a women's officer or a gender/equality officer, could that be something you could put in motion? It would be of long-term benefit if your uni is prone to pulling stunts like this.

BobbiFleckmann Fri 08-Mar-13 13:19:59

you see my immediate response to this was a party with a load of girls dressed like Alexis Carrington. Why have all of you assumed that it's the men being the CEOs?

namechangeguy Fri 08-Mar-13 13:20:18

It might seem a bit odd, to attend something you disagree with, but it also might give a better idea of what these events are actually about, and why they are so popular. There are theories abound on here, but I wonder what the reality is, i.e. what the perceptions and reasoning of the women actually are?

namechangeguy Fri 08-Mar-13 13:21:57

I did suggest something similar Bobbi, although substitute Karren Brady or Mary Portas for Alexis - you are showing your age grin

BobbiFleckmann Fri 08-Mar-13 13:23:59

au contraire, I'm on a hipster 80s revival ironic tip! (yes i'm old...).

PromQueenWithin Fri 08-Mar-13 13:24:26

"There are theories abound on here, but I wonder what the reality is, i.e. what the perceptions and reasoning of the women actually are?"

NCG I can only give you my own perception and experience. As a young student, I would have joined in with gusto, gone tarty and enjoyed the attention! As a 35 year old feminist with more life experience and confidence, I see the unfortunate undercurrents and would challenge this robustly were it to appear at my place of work (which actually happens to be a university, and I've never seen such a thing).

WilsonFrickett Fri 08-Mar-13 14:09:15

And as a young student I would probably have been picketing outside grin Ah, the days of a full student grant and its associated time to actually engage in things outwith one's lecture programmes and work...

Thing is, the people who attended the event aren't posting on here. The person who was opposed to it is so if it's OK with you ncg I'll direct my energy to responding to her post.

namechangeguy Fri 08-Mar-13 14:11:22

As did I, Wilson. Which is why I suggested she engaged with them.

FastidiaBlueberry Fri 08-Mar-13 16:54:25

"And the point about 'other women go along with it, so feminists are wrong' is a moot point. The women going along with it are human being with reasons of their own. The men are irrelevant. If anyone has a problem with this stuff, the women are the ones you should be concentrating on. "

Er no.

The men are the ones for whose benefit this whole thing is being done.

It's a compliment to them. Women decorating themselves for their assessment and enjoyment.

And the concept of office hoes being promoted to ensure that men think of women as being othered. And that women junior to them in their offices in the future, can be fitted into that stereotype.

Mugofteaforme Mon 11-Mar-13 16:03:59

"The men are the ones for whose benefit this whole thing is being done"

Oh come on! are you really saying that women don't get some pleasure out of such an evening?

Some will laugh at each other in their attempts to dress as hoes.
Some will be empowered, both from the attention of their peers and others.
Some will laugh at the ill fitting cloths the CEOs wear or their choice of tie.

Women will dress as high powered CEOs and Men as Hoes..They'll laugh at themselves, each other and just about everything inbetween smile

Many of the women will achieve things that we can only dream of- One night with a short skirt and extra long eyelashes won't change that.

and for whats it's worth many of these "ents" are organised by both the men and the women.

In short it's silly, it's fun and can't be extended to the world outside the student bar.

slug Mon 11-Mar-13 16:25:02

And yet the term "Hoes" is being used.

What are Hoes exactly? Whores perhaps? i.e. women who are there solely for the sexual gratification of men. Ironic or otherwise it's still deeply offensive to half the population.

PromQueenWithin Mon 11-Mar-13 16:28:48

Unless of course people are being expected to dress either as high flying executives or gardening implements?

beansmum Mon 11-Mar-13 20:00:42

I don't think the issue is how people dressed at the event (all men in suits, women in a range of things from actual workwear to 'sexy secretary' short skirts, stockings and bras out, judging by the photos on facebook), or whether they enjoyed themselves. Most of them probably had a great time. It is also completely irrelevant that the president of the club that organised the event is a women.

The name of the event is still offensive and inappropriate. Haven't had a reply to my complaint yet...

beansmum Mon 11-Mar-13 20:01:27

a woman - obviously

FastidiaBlueberry Mon 11-Mar-13 20:09:32

"Oh come on! are you really saying that women don't get some pleasure out of such an evening?"

No, of course women will get pleasure from the evening. We must take our pleasure where we can.

I think we need to ask ourselves what sort of empowerment it is, to have the attention of your peers.

Because it sounds remarkably needy to me - the very opposite of power.

I note that men aren't expected to be satisfied with empowerment - they get the real thing, power.

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