¡ LIVE NOW @ live.novaramedia.com !
mayoral election saudi arabia long read eric pickles british empire industry #copsoffcampus uk ucl salmond arts rotherham slovakia intervention rhodes dilma rousseff renting spanish civil war working class romani establishment maria miller strike london armenia pops estate ecb young people Economy morality kurdistan energy care Police corruption palestine petrobras egypt spaceX precariousness budget momentum rusell brand novaraeu universal basic income data Tuzla labour palm oil angela mcrobie reparations lexit not fair not safe idf yes scotland journalism tax evasion demographics memes news intersectionality lobo review Media bias women irish water populism holocaust conchita turkey gary barlow yarls wood brazil student movement red wedge IndyRef london mayor growth justice global warming social movements sisi jo cox greens capitalism spending bennett mark duggan hague costas lapavitsas tactics tef ge2020 environmentalism glasgow bis rojava prison westminster ucu bulgaria eurozone james meadway bonuses mcgettigan pablo iglesias airstrikes reproductive rights inequality precarious europe syriza psoe george osborne clr james treasury romanichal student politics miners strike manifesto industrial action protests climate bnp crisis debt drones deflation cooperatives spain house of lords cnd mexico socialism andy burnham couriers far-right isil left local government space indonesia yemen wales projects 22o nationalism novara10k full unemployment denis o brien assad iran money sexism class struggle Centre Left prevent oxi university tabitha bast ge2012 legitimacy reclaim the streets social strike asia iraq modi libspill genocide privatisation age libertarianism sexual assault tampon tax arms industry general election grants iww primaries elon musk care work rabina khan whiteness borders tabloids desire bjp daesh arms trade evictions nato arab spring university of london football wages mitterand state ireland marketing technology utopia automation precarity brexit cost of living coalition work ethic living wage gender hollaback willetts conservatives communities fuel poverty catalonia forest fire extraction universities environment dan whittall business divestment solidarity sophie lewis corbyn social cleansing monarchy south america right to buy bank of england mental health week scotland subversion sport usa gypsies fe canada northern ireland deep state nurses grexit tax reform food individualism madness bae systems housing action deportation mental health varoufakis charity nuclear unions owen jones banks England sadiq khan consumption student strike calais open democracy france autonomism music radicalism independent media safety work pluralism trans communism syria loans property guardians social reproduction free trade history malcolm x radical reformism imf indignados big pharma pasok blockadia andrew dolan tsipras mark carney ttip oil syrian civil war psychiatry midwives zabludowicz tax electoral reform international brigades terrorism bias gangs foreign aid antiziganism Tom Abree chuka umunna landlords remembrance pensions feminism crimea Aaron Bastani aid al qaeda workplace reappropriation james butler survivors ref pay gap steel industry tower hamlets Elections property rights ge2015 europe week philanthropy david harvey ukraine kurds miliband interest hydra malawi ferguson another europe is possible athens middle east trident new labour pay dover sussex productivity risk columnism cpi greek election roma presidential race 2016c fees omar aziz basic income leaders debate homelessness unemployment finance Scottish Independence unionism travellers libdems trolling ello soas education tube pharmaceuticals yes scotand degrowth funerals latin america buy-to-let 15m olympics netanyahu rmt nhs tuition fees austerity pop culture books david cameron hsbc maps BBC property community organising refusal of work pride immigration cop21 erdogan UKIP native boris johnson transport atheism democrats human rights arran james russia christianity marx balls mark regev hillary clinton magdalene laundries comedians silicon valley labour movement eleanor penny student loans citizenship natalie bennett easter rising michel temer electoralism asn ultras thatcher he ubi obr class reappropriation racism rob ford sweden magna carta cable neoliberalism panama papers kobane vaga de totes obama modern monetary theory Policing orange order colombia war squatting suicide benefits internet religion deficit israel cities putin people's assembly colonialism television spanish election strikes frankfurt christmas strategy of refusal warwick blockupy democracy portugal refugees barclays Claudia Jones apps election fraud rent strike health support migrant labour results eurovision detention fianna fail start up workfare political economy budget2014 effective altruism golden dawn comedy orientalism chris grayling socialist womens liberation tony abbott snp social housing fascism housing benefit rbi occupy rape catalan independence alia al ghussain economic sussex five migrants edl riots picketprofiteers junior doctors accessibility stealing zac goldsmith tesla security facebook public sector charlie lahr geography troika ACAB germany esol nuit debout uk uncut jo johnson foreign policy post-fordism uber regeneration mob romania Gentrification uk industry focus e15 post-capitalism eastern europe cuts iwgb tories refusal uffc novara wire housing west papua paul nuttall housing crisis free syrian army literature rape culture pfi students gdp cameron freedom of movement left bloc islamophobia queer china jesus fortress europe unite europe fbu employment nick clegg videos left unity world cup star trek tuc production theresa may new york privacy armenian genocide hospitality ual barts health social media adam stoneman science radical lives catalunya ipr ethics isis blair reshuffle eire plaid cymru rent martin lewis government carpenters higher education boko haram aboriginal m18 eu referendum he white paper bingo bouchart ludova strana nase slovensko lawrence and wishart bullshit jobs localism rpi asylum eu social democracy izquierda unida police violence anxiety green party migration nef mhairi black ukba print media masons extremism police brutality crime nypd media new democracy zero hours privatization armenians ecology sturgeon future mubarak legal aid gaza local media electoral fraud Dawkins depression jobs workers demands hotels krugman birmingham international ncafc britain first paris attacks organising private schools united left Niki Seth-Smith Labour Party greece climate change mark zuckerberg marxism sinn fein footwear mike brown jeremy corbyn national liberation councils youtube global south architecture lse bell hooks boycotts john mcdonnell YesVote heathrow ciudadanos Secular Crisis privatisaton uprising unidos podemos alienation trade unions protest podemos radical housing network sexual violence #elite help to buy conference season bernie sanders dale farm cup clegg revuelta de escaleras london underground david willetts synthetic hedge welfare state uaf engels burnham direct action fracking interviews diane abbott free education millbank is no borders revolution publishing kerry sian berry revolt of the ladders india culture value jeremy hunt global debout secret employee free papua aristocracy bds australia poverty cantona newham migrant west bank theft morsi anti-capitalism nus freefede outsourcing financialisation law barcelona en comu Race james meek lgbt charlie hebdo visas antifascism pasokification politics occupation student debt international development digital media inflation ahora madrid free speech social networks telefonica ulu anarchism met economics politicians domestic violence house of commons Adam Ramsay hamas

4 Rape Revenge Plots Unfolding Worldwide

submit to reddit

From the spectacle of injustice that was The Central Park Five to the realities flagged by Angelina Jolie’s vague ‘campaign’ at Srebrenica, the disciplinary functions of rape — within and without the home, with and without classed and racialized dynamics — are the air we breathe, the backing vocals on our news feeds. Even in the rare instances when they’re not making the news, individual or collective rapes — and the threat of them — continue to structure and pervade life in capitalist society across the globe. By way of counter-power, four closely interlinked manifestations of movement are illustrated below: demonstration, litigation, self-defence, and armed collective reprisal. Despite the tragic contemporary frequency of rape victims’ self-immolation, suicide has not been included here.

1. Demonstration.

In India, following high-profile Mumbai and Delhi gang rape incidences, a bellicose and sustained anti-rape movement has compelled thousands to the streets and onto buses in protest. While ‘traditional’ religious, patriarchal, and even fascist elements are participating in the rush to affirm women’s ‘value’, the majoritarian feminist contingent is, Kavita Krishnan argues, evolving a radical state- and family-critical analysis that seeks to revolutionize urban and rural caste-inflected sex relations alike.

sophie lewis 4rrp 1

In South Korea, incensed by Tokyo’s retraction of its WWII-related apology, rallies that have taken place every week since 1991 are now vindicating afresh the former ‘comfort women’ of Japanese and U.S. officers. The ramifications of this solidarity with trafficked sex slaves potentially run very deep for South Korean feminists’ struggles. These are demonstrations worth keeping an eye on.

sophie lewis 4rrp 2

2. Litigation.

The question of whether Twitter-storms can manipulate rape-apologist judges (as at Maryville, a year after Steubenville, USA) remains moot. But with massive grassroots support, eight UK women who became the unconsenting long-term sexual partners of undercover Metropolitan Police officers deployed to spy on political activist networks — some having children by them — are courageously conducting lengthy legal action to expose, redress, and hopefully impossibilize future repetitions of the experience they define as “being raped by the state”.

On a brighter note, since a rule barring prostitutes as claimants was removed in 2012, fourteen sex workers in California who suffered rape (though not by police) have been granted compensation. Since the 1970s when the designation ‘sex work’ was invented, sex workers have been organizing all over the world (usually out of court) against the (seemingly all-too-routine) rapes perpetrated by police. Refer to the discussion on consent, and the final chapter, ‘Movement’, in Melissa Gira Grant’s new book Playing the Whore.

3. Self-defence.

It was memorable when Rihanna shot her rapist down in 2010: celebrations of the individual vigilante abound, but very, very few aren’t male. Here are a few recent, real, live, departures from the script.

sophie lewis 4rrp 3

On 7 March 2014, Thomson Reuters  reported the jailing of a woman, Fatima, who axed her habitual rapist to death in the city of Fès and proclaimed: “He killed me a thousand times before I ever came to kill him too”.

In Ciudad Juárez, the assassin self-identified via email to the authorities as Diana “Cazadora de Choferes” (Hunter of Bus Drivers) caused an international stir by becoming, she said, an instrument for avenging rapes perpetrated by drivers with impunity. Reports in 2013 suggest “Diana” enjoyed considerable community solidarity in Mexico, and has not been apprehended to date.

It is as yet unclear what will become of Hong Kong resident and mother Yeung Ki during her eleven-day trial. Ki was the victim of her boyfriend’s rape, long-term abuse, and concomitant attempts to blackmail her with threats of revenge pornography. This year she drugged him and used scissors to remove his penis (which she flushed down the toilet) prior to beating him to death.

There is fear, too, in the minds of the many activists dedicated to freeing Yakiri Rubí Rubio Aupart, who was until recently imprisoned in Mexico City. Yaki still faces a terrible battle in court. Though cleared of capital murder charges, she has been bailed at a sum ten times higher than could be expected, for “excess of legitimate defence”. Meanwhile, the existence of her girlfriend, Rosa, is denied — lending a “corrective” flavour to the narrative, which many South Africans would find familiar. That she once had a lover with the same first name as one of the strangers who raped and slashed her, is apparently evidence enough for the judge that what happened could not have been rape. The dead kidnapper’s brother, the accomplice, still walks free.

Late in 2012, Nevin Yildirim calmly handed herself into the police in Yalvaç, Turkey, having avenged herself on her rapist by shooting him and cutting his head off, dropping it in the town square. “Don’t play with my honour!” she is reported to have proclaimed, as the head of her repeat abuser, her aunt’s husband, rolled towards a café.

4. Armed collective reprisal.

To those seeking freedom, ‘justice’ would not be enough even if we could attain it. But the justice that revenge represents is often what we desire. The ‘accountability processes’ for rapists that (primarily) women have come up with in many milieus do include forms of anti-violent violence.

Urban feminist tribes, from San Francisco’s surviving ‘girl armies‘ to Berlin’s antifascist Tuntenhaus veterans, are no strangers to the tactic of group rape vigilante fightback or ‘bashback’. Worldwide, simple rape-defence training courses for men and women are also becoming more and more common.

Indien Frauenbewegung Gulabi Gang

A rural counterpart to look out for comes from Uttar Pradesh. Here, a militant group of women who are combating, hands-on, their community’s scourge of domestic violence and rape by husbands, police, and others, goes by the name ‘Gulabi Gang’—and has recently acquired a documentary and a website.

Whether those Western commentators delighted by reports of a stick-wielding sisterhood in pink saris would respond similarly to a ‘bashback’ approach to Woody Allens, Julian Assanges and Jimmy Saviles remains to be demonstrated.