Your Mind

@Males: Do The Rape Scenes In Films Turn You On?

By January 12, 2016 7
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So a few days ago I got sick and took a couple days off.

Sick sucks, but a day off in my world means I get to eat all of the junk food I want, plus do my favorite thing ever: binge watch a ridiculous amount of shows online. And so I started with Game Of Thrones, followed by True Detective, and at night decided to really treat myself by going to see the critically acclaimed “The Revenant”.

At this point the level of gruesomeness and violence I had ingested (and I’m not just talking about the food) was VERY HIGH, but most things being shown nowadays, brilliant or not, tend to have these certain ingredients, am I right?  Edgy yet tasteful, with righteous premises.

Cut to me watching the Revenant (no spoiler alerts here) and after the mandatory arms being cut, heads being smashed, men being killed left and right, came the obvious scene answer to the  “where’s the girl?” question at the back of all of the viewer’s minds.

“Bring the girl!”, someone bellowed from onscreen. It was a typical group of men laughing and drinking and pissing (because why not I guess?) followed by a Native American girl being dragged through the woods by some European captain. She resists of course, but we as the audience know that there’s no way this girl will win the battle. And guess what follows?

Yup. She’s pushed against a tree and gets fucked from behind while she pants and whispers “no, please, no”.

Technically not a problem so far, right? I mean, if I was feeling sensitive it was completely my own fault according to the standard is-this-okay guideline questions:

Is what the movie is portraying contextually or historically accurate? Yes.

Does it make sense for the movie? Yes again.

Happy Ending? Lucky for her the main character-hero manages to set her free because HE is a man of honor who knows better. Thank you sir from myself, and the entire female community for not follow your manly instincts and instead allowing us to continue doing what we do best:  walking through the woods, braiding our hair whilst picking cherries and knitting sweaters we don’t really need. 

Yes, the moral of the scene was clear: raping is wrong and barbaric.

But seeing as I had just been in bed swallowing 24 frames per second for HOURS, I realized that I was taking in the 6th scene (at least) that I had seen that day of some woman getting fucked from behind.

Don’t worry, I’m not gonna get into the “what does it mean to get fucked from the back” discussion. There is another article for that and I personally only care about what it meant to me, in the context of my personal life.

Because I am still feeling unsure about what the exact reason for my restlessness is on this subject.

When I came out of the theatre with my boyfriend, I mentioned this to him. Since the scene had appeared I had sort of started mentally recounting how many times I’ve seen (both on TV and the big screen) a woman fucked from the behind.

SO FUCKING MANY. Countless. They are all the same. She’s dragged, she screams for help, she’s pushed against some prop, she begs, she mourns, and you know the rest.

I asked my boyfriend “ what do you take away from that scene?” “Does it make you uncomfortable”? “Does it hurt?” “Was it necessary for the story?”And, finally, the one I was scared to ask, but was the only one I really cared about:

“Does it turn you on”?

He said he had barely taken it into consideration when he saw it. It was a scene, it was meant to imply “ raping is wrong” and he got that. It didn’t make him uncomfortable, although he did not enjoy the violent aspect. And, finally—Yes. A part of him was turned on.

His answer, I am afraid, confirmed exactly what I had suspected.

Is there a chance, that by the repeated aesthetic and storyline choices, a director (who just so happens to always be a male) chooses to add these scenes?

Because honestly, I am sick and tired of looking at them. I’m sick and tired of seeing myself as the woman; a woman with the same build, same holes, same weaknesses, being dragged and pushed and fucked as I beg for a kind male soul to have some “honor” —or to be a pussy who loves his mother too much, to decide to NOT rape me.

I want to pause here for a second before I get too worked up and tell you what I feel every time I see these scenes:

It hurts me. It hurt me so much, so deeply, that I can’t even talk about it.

It hurts me. It hurt me so much, so deeply, that I can’t even talk about it. It is terrifying for me. I remember being a teenager and thinking “I’d prefer to die than to be raped”. I don’t know if I’ve changed my mind on that one and I resent every single one of you who thinks that’s an exaggeration, because then perhaps you can’t even begin to understand what rape means to a woman.

And honestly, I don’t think men try. I have the most beautiful, cultured, love-to-be-surrounded-by-women men in my life and NONE of them have been able to hold a conversation about feminism with me. It has that “white man trying to tell black people they get their struggle, while simultaneously being discomforted by the topic” kind of vibe. Because it’s painful to watch and hurtful to be a part of.

And so like any obliging woman, I decided to shut up. “I must be getting difficult”, I think, as I allow my boyfriend to change the subject.

We women, we shut up. Because God knows no one wants to hurt the sensitivity of a man, as they never hurt ours.

I’ve always wondered what it must feel like to be a man: To be privileged, to feel safe. Not to know there’s a whole world out there that is capable, and fit to hurt you. To not be raised to protect yourself. To hopefully manage the length of your skirt decently so that no one can say “ You were looking for it”. To not have people exchange their time for your body. To not see yourself, over and over again, being fucked from the behind. To not be the one who begs for mercy, and to know that you are only safe, if your male counterpart just so chooses you to be.

I believe there are—besides the historical facts, besides the storyline and besides the aesthetics—a certain desire to (excuse my french) turn some dicks on. A gift from the directors, to their male audiences.

And perhaps I should apologize because this might seem like a huge generalization. But the apology would only be due to men, because I’m 100% sure that any woman who’s aware of our place in society—yes, even today—would agree with me.

There are tons of examples in media like this, from how certain ethnicities are portrayed, to how the “heroes” are chosen, to how the women are supposed to look—pretty, weak, and fucked—and finally, to how we are all guilty by our consumption of it.

Because just how much is it really worth it to repeat the superficial moral of a movie, such as “violence is bad” if we are the ones entertained by it ? What is the true value behind what we watch?

Ultimately, are we spreading morals, or getting off from aspects of suffering?

 

Comments

  • Jo Bless

    Men who find rape in a scene or otherwise a turn on might end up being raped themselves. Seriously, you would have to be the most twisted sick dirtiest thing on the planet to find something so horrific as rape a turn on.

  • SonofaGlitch

    OK I’ll bite.

    Never once in my life have I found a rape scene in a film or show erotic. However, I have recently come to find the rape fantasy as such. I never did before though.

    And here’s what changed: As I got into the second half of my 20’s I started dating a string of women who had higher demands on my masculinity.

    Earlier in life, I’d say most of my relationships were pretty equal, pretty mutual, or even that I was the one at a disadvantage (being a boy toy to some older, far more established women). Then, as I got older, women started expecting . . . more and more and more . . . for me to “be the man.”

    To seriously make pretty much every decision about what to do, where to go, when et cetera. To be well put together, less emotional, and more stoic. I don’t know if I just started to attract a certain type of woman because I could now grow a decent beard, but women just wanted a more dominant, more controlling, more “manly” version of the person I was prior to that point. They didn’t want to be equal. They wanted to be subordinate.

    This, of course, extended to the bedroom. These were women who completely encouraged me basically to insist upon them whenever I’d want to have sex, and oblige after token protestations. Within various limits, they wanted things rough. Three of them went on to indulge me of their rape fantasies. Of how hot they thought it was, et cetera.

    And until this string of relationships I’d never even considered any of this as a possibility. I figured no woman would rightfully in their mind find any of this a turn-on and that rape was obviously terrible. I remember a date earlier in my 20’s that ended as a total bust when a girl brought it up as things were getting hot and heavy and I blanched and walked away immediately, really freaked out by what I figured was a deeply damaged person who needed to sort through some issues.

    After these women though . . . my tastes may have changed a little as a result.

    Moreover, after talking to both men and women . . . this doesn’t seem to be uncommon at all. Lots of women find the idea of forceful men on resisting women hot, and lots of men I’ve talked to have confirmed that they have women preferring the dynamic all the time. Most of them expressed a pretty interesting attitude about it too – they only played along because their girlfriends wanted them to. It wasn’t a natural inclination.

    I used to never think that any of this could be true, but in my experience it seems like it sure is.

    So I think there’s something you have to consider: rape scenes don’t turn men on nearly so much as they do women. They’re there for the benefit of women more than for men.

    And more importantly, that potentially violent gender dynamics about sex are impressed upon men by women, not the other way around.

    • degree180

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    • degree180

      This is well thought out and represents the middle ground. That we all play a part in this. Id like to turn this comment into an article – Candace Owens, CEO

      • SonofaGlitch

        Oh sure, go ahead and do whatever Candace.

  • Ross

    Why are you so sexist and misandrist?

    No, let’s be serious. Why else would there be a rape scene in the movie rather than the assumption that it would titillate men BECAUSE men love women being raped? MAYBE it has something a little more to do with the fact that men and women are both repulsed and have an emotional response to the brutality of rape. Men wanting to defend women from rapists (and thus more likely to feel a connection to said defender in the movie) and women feeling a different connection of an empathetic and sympathetic kind.

    I mean THIS would make sense…..right? Because you know damn well that rapists of EITHER gender are NOT the exception to the rule and MOST people do not find rape titillating.

    In fact, such a suggestion would HAVE to be both disgustingly sexist and sickening. I mean you would have to agree IF this is your automatic go to and default, that there would have to be something NOT wrong with men but wrong with you, right? Unless maybe this was simply a joke in which case I do not get the humor but you got me a good one.

  • sentpsyawareness

    No you sexist fucking asshole, they do not. Glad your hateful intern powered life ruining app lost it’s funding. *shocking*