A TED Talk That Might Turn Every Man Who Watches It Into A Feminist?

(165 Posts)
BuffytheAppleBobber Fri 18-Oct-13 13:27:00

I thought this was quite good.

scallopsrgreat Mon 21-Oct-13 14:57:30

No I was talking about confronting the subsequent attitudes of people who had witnessed or knew the people concerned. None of these men discussing this incident were discussing their own violence. They don't have to be discussing their own violence to either need challenging or for their views on violence to be apparent.

scallopsrgreat Mon 21-Oct-13 14:57:40

No I was talking about confronting the subsequent attitudes of people who had witnessed or knew the people concerned. None of these men discussing this incident were discussing their own violence. They don't have to be discussing their own violence to either need challenging or for their views on violence to be apparent.

BuffytheAppleBobber Mon 21-Oct-13 15:02:58

So, if all you want me and others like me to do is voice our disapproval when appropriate, then you have my full support

Yes please, that would be great! Can we talk about whether our understandings of 'when appropriate' are similar?

Have to dash off to collect dd, but am interested in what you think.

WMittens Mon 21-Oct-13 15:11:46


What would be really nice DadWasHere is if male violence became totally socially unacceptable.

What would be really nice is if all violence became totally socially unacceptable.

Biggedybiggedybongsoitis Mon 21-Oct-13 15:16:29

Well, not when there is a jokey thread in AIBU about 'I am going to kill my DP' etc. So not when my mum tells a joke either, I guess, or other people I know to not be serious. It's about interpreting intent, and assessing the mood.

When to do it? When someone screams "I'll kill you!' at the top of their voice. Or if someone boast about 'giving someone a slap'. Or, in cases like the one scallops quotes. I'd find out what went on and be straight to HR if it was true. I'd also be questioning the other people - men and women - who witter on about it and take no action. And I would have a quiet word with the individual themselves. Or if I witness it. The same as anybody else in here, I guess.

BuffytheAppleBobber Mon 21-Oct-13 15:38:30


Yes, that's a given. This thread, however, is about a video that aims to persuade men that speaking up against male violence is very important and worthwhile.

Do you have any opinions on that?

Hullygully Mon 21-Oct-13 15:40:15

It's a shame this wasn't around to post on the thread about men not speaking up before.

Hullygully Mon 21-Oct-13 15:40:59

I liked the "He needs leadership training, not sensitivity training"

Biggedybiggedybongsoitis Mon 21-Oct-13 15:48:14

I'd feel very uncomfortable limiting myself to only commenting about male violence. If I heard women going on about it, I would hope my reaction would be the same. However, I understand that this particular discussion is focussed in one particular area.

BuffytheAppleBobber Mon 21-Oct-13 15:55:05

The point isn't that you limit yourself (or that other men limit themselves) to only speaking about male violence.

And the point isn't that the rules of threadique dictate that one shouldn't derail with 'but women do it too'.

The point (for me) that's made with this video is that a great deal of the violence in the world is committed by men, and that some men don't seem that fussed about speaking up about it.

I am not condemning your attitude Biggedy, though I wonder whether it's the very acceptability of making jokes about DV that creates the sort of culture that sees DV as not that big a thing, or a private matter, or whatever.

It's interesting that the examples you gave were of women joking about male violence or using figures of speech like "I'll kill him" etc. Would you think differently if these had been spoken / posted by men? Do you think you might have been trying to get me to trip up by saying that it's OK for women to say these things but not for men to say them?

BuffytheAppleBobber Mon 21-Oct-13 15:56:01


threadiquette, I meant.

That'll teach me to try and make up a new blended term, now won't it thlblush

Biggedybiggedybongsoitis Mon 21-Oct-13 16:04:27

My point about limiting myself was to WMittens, who raised the point about all violence.

Buffy, there are 'jokes' all the time on AIBU, and probably other places, about wanting to dispose of one's partner. I am saying that I can distinguish between serious threats and lighthearted MN threads. How do you feel about those sort of discussions? Would you ever say anything to someone who had started such a thread?

garlicvampire Mon 21-Oct-13 16:10:16

Biggedy and Dad, a huge part of the message is about semantics: the way that words imply male violence is a normal fact of life, rather like bad weather. "She sought out violent partners" - so it's your mum's fault, then? What about the fact that these partners were violent? Yes, it's wrong for a woman to tolerate violence in front of her kids, and who made her tolerant? A violent man did, I'm 100% sure.

She gets hit.
She got raped.
She got herself pregnant.

Give her a good slap, haha.
She's asking for it.
You want to show her who's boss.
Teach her some respect.

'Violence against women' or violence by men?
'Domestic violence' or wife beating?
'Sex crimes' or rapists?

All of these things can be picked up and corrected in conversation. I've learned to do it myself; it was easy. You may get a split-second of squirmy silence on speaking, but most people get it straight away.

The few who choose to take issue are not people I'd want any more to do with, anyway - if male violence is so ingrained in their psyche that they'll defend it in public, they can't be good people.

garlicvampire Mon 21-Oct-13 16:13:03

Biggedy, were you here recently, under a different name, demonstrating something of an obsession with "AIBU to want to kill my partner" threads?

Biggedybiggedybongsoitis Mon 21-Oct-13 16:15:24

Agreed, garlic, with the exception of;

'Violence against women' or violence by men?
'Sex crimes' or rapists?

Not sure about those examples and what you mean by them. You can be sexually assaulted without being raped. Violence by men includes violence against men, which I don't think is being discussed here. So both are important distinctions. Are you saying that they are or they aren't?

Biggedybiggedybongsoitis Mon 21-Oct-13 16:15:54

No, I wasn't.

garlicvampire Mon 21-Oct-13 16:54:40

Ah, thanks for that Biggedy.

Violence by men includes violence against other men, yes. It's important to look at violence as originating with perpetrators, not using terms that suggest it floats around by itself. 'Male violence against women' accurately sums up the topic in this thread. But all violence has a perpetrator, whether it be man, woman or dog. Language can make that clear, or obfuscate it.

'Sexual offences' is such a problematic term, it's under almost constant review by the CPS. They're crimes of power & violence; the argument for separate classification when a sexual characteristic's involved is actually pretty weak.

WMittens Mon 21-Oct-13 18:21:16


Only got through half the video as I had to go out, will let you know when I've seen it all.

WMittens Mon 21-Oct-13 19:27:37

So, on the video:

- definitely a route that should be pursued, a culture basically evolves around what your peers find acceptable; destroying the 'acceptability' of violence against women I think will be effective as part of a multi-faceted approach.

- I like the sound of the bystander approach

On the title:

- no, I don't think this is likely to turn any man into a feminist, for several reasons. Already mentioned is getting men who have no interest in the point of view to watch it, but additionally the presenter isn't going to endear himself to men. Obviously this is a sensitive and emotive subject, but he comes across as overzealous, at points he is pontificating, his language connotes (maybe unintentionally) that all men commit violence, quote: "What is going on with men?" "...so many men..." "...why is that a common problem..."

He states that men don't like to be challenged (true) but using language like this is not going to get men to listen, it's going to make them feel defensive. Maybe his delivery is different to a company of marines compared to an audience of (I assume) mostly women.

He talks about "...battle between the sexes and other kinds of nonsense..." but puts women on a pedestal, whereas men are the villains (see above). I'm not going to argue with the facts, the statistics exist that tell the story but he's not going to win over many men with the sort of language he's using in this video.

Flippant remark:
- "Isn't your silence a form of consent?"
Not something I'd want to say to a roomful of feminists.

On changing peer culture:

- There has undeniably been a shift over time, and I don't think violence is seen as acceptable; I believe (without any stats, if someone can direct me, great) the majority of violence against women is behind closed doors where the perpetrators either don't believe they will be discovered, believe they can control their victim such that the violence won't be reported, or even consider that they're not doing anything wrong.

The problem with changing the peer culture is how often are men aware that a friend or colleague has committed violence against a woman? The example of saying, "I don't appreciate that joke" is most likely to be met with, "FFS, it's only a joke." (I believe this may have been discussed in previous posts, apologies, I did only skim-read).

Biggedybiggedybongsoitis Mon 21-Oct-13 20:01:16

The problem with changing the peer culture is how often are men aware that a friend or colleague has committed violence against a woman?

This is a huge problem, if this is what we are referring to about men pressurising other men to change their behaviour. It isn't a cabal or a conspiracy. Men don't talk about this like they do about football or cars or their kids.

DebrisSlide Mon 21-Oct-13 20:34:17

Problem is, I wonder how many men would actually like the cloak of the perceived capacity for violence equivalent of Schrodinger's Rapist removed, even if they were never once violent themselves.

I imagine the world would be a very different place for them if it were so.

garlicvampire Mon 21-Oct-13 20:36:48

The example of saying, "I don't appreciate that joke" sounds American to me. I might expect to hear it in Britain from a person whose career revolves around something like diversity training, perhaps, but it's more usual to answer with "That's gross!"

Then someone says "Yeah, but it's funny!" and you say "No, it's just foul."

I sometimes say things like "Did you mean to sound like you approve of wife-beating?" depending on the company (when I want to piss 'em off wink)

But "I don't appreciate that joke" just sounds like an elderly headmistress! Worse, some twat might think you want it explained ...

scallopsrgreat Mon 21-Oct-13 20:39:32

Well DebrisSlide that is a very good question. It is part of male privilege that all men benefit from the oppression that some instigate through violence.

garlicvampire Mon 21-Oct-13 20:41:53

xposted, Debris. I suppose the expectation that "all men" could win a fight, if they had to, is so deeply ingrained it's hard to imagine a world where this didn't feature.

Mind you, I like to think I'd stand a fighting chance (heh) of winning, too. Fighting is actually part of our nature. It's just the bit about needing to prove dominance that buggers things up.

WMittens Mon 21-Oct-13 21:12:20

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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