I spent four years at college in the US. It was common understanding amongst all the students, mostly females, that it wasn’t safe to wander around campus at night on your own. The school had safety buttons located within every few 100 metres but it still wasn’t going to be enough to make you feel totally safe. At least I didn’t.
Like most college campuses, there were stories of rape. None that were necessarily proven. Mostly because everyone knew it was hard to prove and although this sounds crazy, I think it would have been easier to stay quiet than to go through the humiliation and relive the horror to only watch the perpetrator go free. We all knew how it worked.
Yana Mazurveck, a photographer from Belarus, was inspired to put this series of images together after the Stanford University rape case a while back. The perpetrator, Brock Turner, received a measly six months for his crime despite being charged and found guilty for the assault. In perhaps the most devastating turn of events, several sick humans blamed the young woman for being so drunk on the night she was assaulted.
The images show women holding up statements that show the kinds of things sexual assault victims hear that intend to diminish their experience. They are powerful, breathtaking, sad and absolutely necessary.
It is NEVER the victims fault; no matter how drunk, how friendly, or how short her dress is. And yes, women should be able to walk outside alone at night time. Yes, they should. We need to share and create more content like this so women aren’t silenced by fear.
The incredible Tara Moss joined us On the Couch a while back and spoke to us about loads of interesting stuff, including her experience with sexual assault as a young woman. You can listen to the chat below, then come check out all our other podcast chats by subscribing here.