I just finished reading this posting and thought to share.
It is in response to Naomi Wolf's comments in the wake of the Julian Assange rape allegations. If you are not familiar with the Julian Assange rape allegations or the #mooreandme hashtag on Twitter, you can catch up on some of the details here and here.
I didn't have any expectations for Michael Moore and Keith Olberman. In my opinion, neither of them speak particularly well for women in general. They are pretty aligned with their own self-interest. I realize that to a certain degree this is true of everyone. However, I expected more from Wolfe. I feel kind of betrayed. I feel that a woman with her body of work shouldn't be saying things like “she did not do enough to prove she did not want it.” It is just a slap in the face.
I agree, too. While I do understand Wolf's point that some of the rape allegations against Assange are politically-motivated, that doesn't make them any less real. Yes, the police is going after him more because of Wikileaks, but that doesn't mean he shouldn't be punished for rape.
I like the idea of some of the other well-known feminists speaking up about what Wolf said. However, as the post points out, one person doesn't speak for an entire movement.
Personally, I do have to wonder what she was thinking...
I'm having visions of Gloria Steinem begging feminists to forgive Bill Clinton because he was, like, pro-choice-ish. And, like Steinem's fuzzy and rote analysis of sexual harassment law in that context, Wolf's statements reflect a lack of clarity (as well as a lack of feminist imagination) on the doctrine of consent.
I will say, however, that as I mentioned in The Diaper Pail's thread on this recently, the timing of these allegations and prosecution is certainly uncanny. Not to be tinfoil-hatty about it, but I can't help but think that it's certainly not out of the realm of possibility that these alleged assaults are getting prosecuted aggressively because the defendant happens to be someone who (among others, let's not forget) put together a website that has done more to upset power dynamics for the U.S. than just about anything else recently, and those in power have commenced to freak the fuck out about it. I'm choosing not to take the bait, myself; I think it's possible Assange is a non-consent-getting asswipe and it is equally and simultaneously possible that he does vitally important work with Wikileaks.
Interesting link, ferret. Could we argue that feminists aren't just collaborating with the state, but that feminism has been (to a limited extent) integrated into the state? I know we have LOTS and LOTS of work to do, but American society isn't nearly as sexist as it used to be.
I like wolf's past work but am not thrilled with her position statements on the wikileaks stuff. I look to my elders for how to deal with what is going on/ historical perspective and think daisy's got it going on right now with this post: feminist collaboration with the state