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Guest Blogger Starling: Schrödinger’s Rapist: or a guy’s guide to approaching strange women without being maced

Phaedra Starling is the pen name of a romance novelist and licensed private investigator living in small New York City apartment with two large dogs. She practices Brazilian jiu-jitsu and makes world-class apricot muffins. Gentlemen. Thank you for reading. Let me start out by assuring you that I understand you are a good sort of person. So far, so good. Now, you want to become acquainted with a woman you see in public. “But wait! Well, no. So when you, a stranger, approach me, I have to ask myself: Will this man rape me? Do you think I’m overreacting? I don’t. When you approach me in public, you are Schrödinger’s Rapist. Fortunately, you’re a good guy. To begin with, you must accept that I set my own risk tolerance. The second important point: you must be aware of what signals you are sending by your appearance and the environment. This means that some men should never approach strange women in public. Are you wearing a tee-shirt making a rape joke? Pay attention to the environment. Yeah.

Every Street Should Be a Safe Space Whether it's getting catcalled or being told to smile, almost every woman deals with street harassment. But it took until this summer to stage the first-ever international conference on street harassment, which took place over the weekend of July 25th at New York University. Grassroots anti-street-harassment group Hollaback organized the event, welcoming community organizers, nonprofit members, and just plain angry folks to share histories and to air out grievances about everyday sexual harassment. It's clear that at the end of the event that street harassment is all about ownership of space. To deal with street harassment, many of the speakers discussed creative ways to redefine public spaces to work for them, from speaking up calmly to taking up breakdancing. That example comes from Rokafella, a Puerto Rican b-girl goddess, who said she started breakdancing to discourage dudes from bothering her while out. Want the best of Bitch in your inbox?

Vigilantes Are Tagging Egypt's Sexual Harassers with Spray Paint Despite worldwide publicity and campaigning, the approach to actually solving the sexual harassment epidemic in Egypt has sadly been a pretty apathetic one, with police giving less than a gram of shit about the situation, leaving street perverts to grope away until their hands are content. So it's perhaps no surprise that anti-harassment groups in Cairo have gone vigilante, taking what’s left of the law into their own hands and patroling the streets to fight the harassment epidemic themselves. We first heard about "Be A Man," one of the more radical anti-harassment campaigns, from a story on NPR. The members of the group patroled during the recent Eid al-Adha festival celebrations, armed with cans of black and white spray paint, attacking, pinning down, and scarlet-lettering the shit out of grabbers and gropers with the words "I Am a Harasser." VICE: Hey Muhammad. Wow, good job. Why did you choose tagging with spray-paint as a tactic? Thanks, Muhammad.

Soraya Chemaly: 50 Actual Facts About Rape Remember facts? Remember facts about rape? Because it turns out that a whole lot of people know less than nothing about the subject. Indeed what they think they know is a whole lot of something that is wrong and dangerous to our heath, safety and well-being. Republican nominee for Senate Richard Mourdock's recent "misspeaking" is unexceptional. Despite what he may have meant when he said "even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape that... is something God intended to happen," he is unexceptional. 50 Facts About Rape Had enough? Rape happens everywhere . In an excellent and thorough overview of our problem, Ending Rape Illiteracy, published yesterday in the Nation, Jessica Valenti, coauthor along with Jaclyn Friedman of Yes Means Yes! Akin, Mourdock, Ryan, et al are the distortions. Resources If you want to understand more about the continued use of rape and its role in culture here are some suggested books. Yes Means Yes! The Color of Violence: The Incite!

Measuring the Evolution of Contemporary Western Popular Music : Scientific Reports To identify structural patterns of musical discourse we first need to build a ‘vocabulary’ of musical elements (Fig. 1). To do so, we encode the dataset descriptions by a discretization of their values, yielding what we call music codewords20 (see Supplementary Information, SI). In the case of pitch, the descriptions of each song are additionally transposed to an equivalent main tonality, such that all of them are automatically considered within the same tonal context or key. The dataset contains the beat-based music descriptions of the audio rendition of a musical piece or score (G, Em, and D7 on the top of the staff denote chords). Full size image (297 KB) We first count the frequency of usage of pitch codewords (i.e. the number of times each codeword type appears in a sample). (a) Examples of the rank-frequency distribution (relative frequencies z′ such that ). Full size image (374 KB) Codeword frequency distributions provide a generic picture of vocabulary usage.

Aaron Karo presents Rehtaeh Parsons, Amanda Todd et la culture du viol Hier, deux hommes de 18 ans ont été arrêtés dans la région d’Halifax, en lien avec les événements entourant le suicide de la jeune Rehtaeh Parsons, survenu en avril dernier. Pour ceux qui auraient loupé l’affaire Rehtaeh Parsons, un bref rappel. En novembre 2011, la jeune Rehtaeh, alors âgée de 15 ans, aurait été agressée sexuellement par quatre garçons, lors d’une soirée « entre amis ». Des photos de l’agression ont ensuite été publiées sur Internet. Dans les mois qui ont suivi la publication des photos, la jeune fille a subi intimidation et harcèlement, jusqu’à ce qu’elle n’en puisse plus et se pende. Elle aura été, à proprement dit, humiliée et bullyée à mort. Or, les deux hommes interpellés hier n’ont pas été inculpés pour agression sexuelle. La mort de Parsons a suscité une véritable onde de choc, partout au Canada. Dans le cas d’Amanda Todd, il n’était pas question d’agression sexuelle, mais bien de harcèlement pur et dur, à caractère sexuel. Mission accomplie.

Anaïs Bourdet publie son livre sur le harcèlement de rue - “Paye ta shnek”, sexuellement vôtre Traduisez « ton vagin », en argot alsacien. Anaïs Bourdet, jeune graphiste installée à Marseille, a compilé les pires tentatives de séduction masculine en milieu urbain. Il y a le jeune poète : « Vous êtes une dynamite de beauté. « Tout a commencé quand un homme dont je n’avais pas relevé les avances m’a suivie dans la rue, confie la graphiste de 28 ans à l’origine du buzz. « Mon but est de faire en sorte que les femmes arrêtent de subir ce sexisme désespérant, milite Anaïs, même si je n’ai pas de solution. On peut se rassurer en se disant qu’une loi préconise le respect et punit ceux qui le violent : « L'injure publique à raison du sexe est passible d'une peine de six mois d'emprisonnement et de 22 500 € d'amende », rappellent Me Leila Hamzaoui et Valence Borgia, les deux avocates qui ont signé la préface du livre. Paye ta shnek, d’Anaïs Bourdet. 14 €.

15 | Artists Target Comic Sexism By Tarting Up A Male Icon In the poster for The Avengers, inescapable this past spring, Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow was the only superhero whose assets were displayed as perhaps they would be on the poster for a porno parody version of the movie. Everyone else got to look like ass-kicking saviors ready for battle; she looked like Cirque Du Soleil: After Hours. The poster was sent up in a widely Reddit-circulated image of all the Avengers posed in a likewise fashion, ridiculing this disparity. Now a new project called The Hawkeye Initiative is drawing even more attention to it… with drawings. During The Avengers, Jeremy Renner’s arrow-happy Hawkeye spends some screen time topless, showing way more skin than Black Widow ever does, and yet the poster doesn’t represent as much. Look through some of the best side-by-side comparison images from The Hawkeye Initiative in the slide show above.