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Thread: 'Rape Culture' or 'Lads Banter' ?

  1. #1
    Politics.ie Member Happytolearn's Avatar
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    Default 'Rape Culture' or 'Lads Banter' ?

    I read this article in the UK Independent. It refers to a website unilad.com (University Lad) and its use of language when referring to women/fellow female students. The author of the Independent article clearly links the articles on unilad.com to a broader 'rape culture' in which women are subjectified, pursued, disrespected and, on the upper end of the scale, victims of sexual and physical abuse. After reading some of the site's content it's hard to see the language as anything but offensive.

    Sites like Uni Lad only act to support our everyday rape culture - Comment - Voices - The Independent

    Uni Lad - Home

    The site describes its origins:

    It started with a group of lads telling tales of drinking and fornication, and what started as a hand book of decent stories turned into a website where the best stories and advice were published for other lads to read and laugh at.

    The word spread fairly quickly and now, two years on, Uni Lad has found its feet and it is entertaining thousands of beer drinking, footy watching and banter loving lads all over the country.


    I understand the adage 'it's not funny until someone is offended' - but what is the line between harmless banter and language that perpetuates harmful behaviour? Is unilad simply entertaining the average joe - or sexualising, objectifying and dehumanising females.
    I'm a better man now than I was that day

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    Politics.ie Member ruserious's Avatar
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    Lads Banter - It happens all the time in groups of young males. Just bravado being let out, better like that than in some other way...
    Boycott the "Irish" Sun rag.

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    Politics.ie Member Happytolearn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ruserious View Post
    Lads Banter - It happens all the time in groups of young males. Just bravado being let out, better like that than in some other way...
    I understand that the vast majority of cases are just bravado - the author of the independent article feels the use of language is part of a culture in which women feel subjectified and (at best) disrespected. Is she being too sensitive? I'm not fully decided
    I'm a better man now than I was that day

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    Politics.ie Member ruserious's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Happytolearn View Post
    I understand that the vast majority of cases are just bravado - the author of the independent article feels the use of language is part of a culture in which women feel subjectified and (at best) disrespected. Is she being too sensitive? I'm not fully decided
    It's rife in male groups. It mostly isn't meant, but it's just part of that laddish banter.
    Boycott the "Irish" Sun rag.

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    Politics.ie Member Happytolearn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ruserious View Post
    It's rife in male groups. It mostly isn't meant, but it's just part of that laddish banter.
    I'm just trying to decide would the majority of my female friends join in the laugh or feel genuinely offended/threatened by the site's content. Surely it's important to consider this?
    I'm a better man now than I was that day

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    Politics.ie Member ruserious's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Happytolearn View Post
    I'm just trying to decide would the majority of my female friends join in the laugh or feel genuinely offended/threatened by the site's content. Surely it's important to consider this?
    Some would some wouldn't. The site reflects reality anywho.
    Boycott the "Irish" Sun rag.

  7. #7
    Politics.ie Member Happytolearn's Avatar
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    Fair enough - I don't want to speak for women here .. but I reckon there are many who would find that quite depressing.
    I'm a better man now than I was that day

  8. #8

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    Can it be both?
    Repeal the 27th.

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    Politics.ie Member Happytolearn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mercurial View Post
    Can it be both?
    Perhaps - just Rape is a pretty emotive word - it's kind of sits in the opposite camp to Banter - they don't go hand in hand for me. Does the language feed the culture of abuse or is it harmless?
    I'm a better man now than I was that day

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    Politics.ie Member truthisfree's Avatar
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    It's just banter to the vast majority who would never consider rape and as for the other tiny percent who would, well....I wouldn't think they rely on banter to commit a crime.

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