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Re the Norwegian deaths.

(134 Posts)
archieleach Mon 25-Jul-11 12:04:27

Breivik is critical of the influence of women in his life saying: 'I do not approve of the super-liberal, matriarchal upbringing though as it completely lacked discipline and has contributed to feminise me to a certain degree.'
Both his mother and stepmother are described as feminists.

I wonder what connection he made in his mind?
What could have happened in his family?

Macaroona Mon 25-Jul-11 12:08:15

I imagine that there will be details of his family life in the papers soon enough, with attempts to analyse the whys and wherefores of what turns someone into a society-hating extremist willing to perpetrate violence.

It fits with the hyper-macho image of many extremist groups though to mistrust and exclude women and their influence.

BitOfFun Mon 25-Jul-11 12:17:53

I'm not really interested in spending any time in that guy's murky brain, looking to extrapolate generalities from his nuttiness. It's very likely that many of the boys who were killed while trying to shape their country's future for the better had mothers who were also feminists, and there were far more of them.

DirtyMartini Mon 25-Jul-11 12:18:19

I "get" the need to try and understand him, but ... I don't know if it is (a) possible to do so, or (b) a good use of our collective energy to spend much time thinking about this man and poring over his attitudes/beliefs.

I'm not sure it can have any positive outcome because it seems unlikely to me that we can ever gain sufficient insights from studying a person like him, to apply usefully in other contexts. Does that make sense? But because his actions have been so extremely horrific, they've drawn disproportionate attention and energy towards him, away from other things that do warrant it. Which is basically what he wanted - for everyone to pay attention to him and spend ages analysing him. Thinking about that makes me uncomfortable about focusing on him in any way.

In short: I'm not trying to squash your thread at all, but personally I don't want to give my time or my thoughts to his statements, even on this topic, and can't see a clear reason for trying to override that instinct.

Sorry, I guess this seems like an unhelpful reply; not meant to be. Am almost posting for myself really, b/c it helps me to organize my thoughts in response to your op smile
Will toddle off now.

DirtyMartini Mon 25-Jul-11 12:18:51

Or, what BoF said more succinctly grin

archieleach Mon 25-Jul-11 12:19:24

It fits with the hyper-macho image of many extremist groups though to mistrust and exclude women and their influence.

Does it? I never knew that. Why is that? Is it because they deny the influence that women have had on them and their development? or does it imply that if they didn't mistrust and exclude women and their influence, then they would be less extreme?
Or something else?

HandDivedScallopsrgreat Mon 25-Jul-11 12:22:59

What do you think archie?

HerBeX Mon 25-Jul-11 13:14:04

Oh I'm sure we'll get a few daily fail type articles blaming his mother for his behaviour.

There's always the mother angle ....

KRIKRI Mon 25-Jul-11 13:15:42

From what I have read, this guy blamed all sorts of people his own situation and what he believed to be the potential demise of Norway. Those with far right political views and fundamentalist Christian beliefs (not always one in the same,) tend to perceive women as being of lower status but holding the "important" role of perpetuating the "right" values within society and for the next generation and for keeping their menfolk on track in a supporting role. They have little time for any women who do anything outside that model.

Having lived a while in Norway many years ago and knowing how they approach incidents like this (although there hasn't been a slaughter like this the time of Nazi occupation,) the Norwegian people will want to understand what "went wrong" with this man, how he moved so far outside the values that most Norwegians hold dear, whether there are lessons for wider society in this and what can be done both to care for those who suffered from his actions and prevent anything similar happening again.

The approach there to criminal justice is VERY different from that in say Britain or the US. Consider the different responses to the death of Silje Redergard there and James Bulger in the UK.

It's important to recognise that trying to understand something doesn't equate with condoning or even trying to excuse it.

What I find most depressing is the number of user comments following reports of the case along the lines of, "While I don't agree with what he did, I can understand what led him to do it." FFS!

niceday Mon 25-Jul-11 13:20:43

I agree with BoF et al that he's a complete and utter nutter and there's nothing to be gained from analyzing his past, except for the access to guns and explosives making expertise

KRIKRI Mon 25-Jul-11 13:26:43

Actually, I think labelling him as a "nutter" kind of lets him off the hook. Although his ideas sound really far out and his actions deplorable, there doesn't seem to be any evidence to date at least that he is or was suffering from mental illness. It actually sounds like everything was meticulously thought out and he genuinely believed he was justified in his actions - just as others who have claimed to be motivated by religious or other ideology have done. That, of course, sounds scarier than saying he's a one-off-nut-job in custody now, so we can sleep easy at night.

EdithWeston Mon 25-Jul-11 13:27:07

You might be interested in Boris Johnson's column in today's Telegraph. Titled "There is nothing to study in the mind of Norway's mass killer", it also includes this (insubstantially evidenced) passage:

"Yesterday the television reporters found an acquaintance of his from Norway, a fellow called Ulav Andersson, who said that he had known Breivik pretty well. He was surprised by all the Knights of Templar stuff, because he had never really been religious, and he wasn’t aware that he had been interested in politics.
“He didn’t seem opinionated at all,” he said. He just became chippy and irritable, said Ulav Andersson, when some girl he had a crush on jilted him in favour of a man of Pakistani origin.
It wasn’t about immigration, or Eurabia, or the hadith, or the Eurocrats’ plot against the people. It wasn’t really about ideology or religion. It was all about him, and his feeling of inadequacy in relation to the female sex. The same point can be made (and has been made) about so many of the young Muslim terrorists".

ElephantsAndMiasmas Mon 25-Jul-11 13:39:39

People very rarely look at the gendered angle of crimes like these. Yet mass killers nearly always seem to have a special loathing of women.

sakura Mon 25-Jul-11 13:53:35

I guarantee the oedipus freudian blaming of women, especially mothers, will be out in full force in the patriarchal media, if it's not already. In fact, I think the Daily Fail has already referred to him as a "mummy's boy"

So there we have it.

The Rules of Patriarchy:

Men must not be held accountable for their behaviour under any circumstances.

Men must be protected from adequate punishment for their crimes.

(The maximum sentence for any crime in Norway is 21 years-- FUck that I say, let the mothers of the teenagers have their way with him. They should strip him naked in the city centre, laugh at his genitals and throw rotten tomatoes at him.
The next man will think twice.)

If this had been a woman, she would already have been proclaimed a monster. THere would have been no umming and aahing over her "political motivations"

But the system has been designed to protect these men. It has been designed to protect rapists and murderers.
IN a non-patriarchal society, women would kill their daughters' rapists, but in patriarchies men who rape are protected at all costs.

Found this excellent quote online:

"Let’s call it what it is. White male supremacy. But this dude is hardly an aberration, despite the media’s attempts to pass him off as a lone, crazed individual, as they always do. The Inquisition was not an aberration. The Crusades were not an aberration. The Nazis were not an aberration. Bosnia was not an aberration. The witch hunts were not an aberration. The Montreal Massacre was not an aberration. The Amish School shooting was not an aberration. The Luby’s Cafeteria massacre was not aberration. The KKK is not an aberration. The Roman, British and Spanish Empires were not aberrations. And neither are the wars in the Middle East. Cripes, how many aberrations do we need before we get that it’s not an aberration? And that white and other male supremacists come a dime a dozen? And how methodical and systematic their extermination is, whether it be by political, economic, religious or military means, or like this dude, just plain old guerrilla warfare? I mean, there’s a woman beaten every 9 seconds, raped every minute, and murdered every 15 minutes in the U.S. Is that an aberration too? Cripes, if it were any other group of people, we’d call it a holocaust. At what point does the media and we, as a society ask, “What is wrong with men?!” instead of pretending like it’s some sort of aberration?"

EdithWeston Mon 25-Jul-11 14:23:34

Interesting quotation, sakura It also shows that this is not a recent product of the Internet age (which some commentators say it is).

archieleach Mon 25-Jul-11 15:17:38

HandDivedScallopsrgreat Mon 25-Jul-11 12:22:59
What do you think archie?

I don't have an opinion. I don't know him.

StewieGriffinsMom Mon 25-Jul-11 15:28:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Ormirian Mon 25-Jul-11 15:33:15

I think he is a nasty, vicious twat! He may have what he thinks of as good rational reasons for his actions but I suspect they will be the usual mix of aggression and fear that inadequate men display. Sadly this inadequate male was also organised enough to do something about it.

Men often seem to blame women for things being wrong. I guess that makes us the perfect scapegoat. Plus ca change hmm

bullet234 Mon 25-Jul-11 15:40:31

Elisabeth Bathory, StewieGriffinsMom.

ElephantsAndMiasmas Mon 25-Jul-11 16:27:20

And see how she is remembered all these centuries later. This man's name will be forgotten far sooner, in most circles. So many men do this, to greater or lesser extents.

archieleach Mon 25-Jul-11 17:05:45

StewieGriffinsMom Mon 25-Jul-11 15:28:29
Then why are you asking us?

Umm, well I wondered what people thought. That's why I ask questions. Why do you ask questions?

Plenty of female mass murderers, I believe. Elsa Koch and Rosemary West spring to mind. Oh and that nurse last week

archieleach Mon 25-Jul-11 17:08:58


Don't you think it is useful to try and understand unusual people?
Good, considerate, kind, pink and fluffy, empathetic people, don't usually cause problems so there is no need to understand them

motherinferior Mon 25-Jul-11 17:10:25

Well, I'm a mixed-race partly Scandinavian partly Indian feminist. Who works. I am the epitome of evil, clearly.

Except I haven't shot anyone, obviously.

DirtyMartini Mon 25-Jul-11 19:21:30

OP, you said "I don't have an opinion. I don't know him" and I think that is what SGM may have meant ... because if you feel that not knowing him = you can't form an opinion, presumably the same applies to us. We don't know him either.

Not meaning to nitpick, but this does make it a tad unreasonable for you to be sarcastic to SGM.

HerBeX Mon 25-Jul-11 20:34:19

"Plenty of female mass murderers, I believe"

Don't be silly. Compared to male mass murderers, there's a dearth of them.

Of course there are a few. But they are dwarfed by the number of males who commit multiple murders.

It's disturbing that the (male) media are really never interested in examining the root of the terrible violence in our culture, isn't it? They just don't want to confront it, because if they do, they might have to work towards changing it.

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