My Body; Not for Consumption
About the project...
Rape culture knows no bounds. People of all gender identities, sexualities, races, classes, abilities, religions, countries and cultures are affected by its pervasive reach. To stand in solidarity against the ubiquity of rape culture and widespread sexual assault, organizers Corinne Werder and Yunique A. Saafir, are coordinating My Body: Not for Consumption.
This project is grounded in a belief that the issues propagated by rape culture impact everyone. Too often, femme bodies are objectified and read as “asking for it.” To fight the conflation of female nudity and sexual availability, we wrote messages real victims/survivors have faced as shaming from society. We aim to show that a femme naked body is not an inherently sexual object. Our bodies are our homes. We chose to use our bodies as vehicles for a powerful message of protest against the cultural normative that breasts are merely sexualized objects, the sole purpose of which is the pleasure of non-femme people.
Because of the successes of intersectional feminism and activist voices worldwide, rape culture is now a widely discussed subject, especially in April, which is during Sexual Assault Awareness Month. However, the conversation around rape and sexual assault survivors primarily focuses on one homogenous story—one that everyone finds believable and can empathize with—the general narrative of the “perfect rape.”
Sexual violence has been normalized to such an extent that if an experience strays from this “perfect rape” narrative media sources, online blogs, social media users and university or elected officials try to find a reason that the survivor must somehow be at fault for what happened to them. There needs to be space for other narratives to be heard and validated, because statistically, marginalized communities are far more likely to experience rape and sexual assault.
Accompanying the displayed work by photographer YuniqueYunique, there will be a compilation of events to keep participants engaged in a critical dialogue around ending rape culture. The proposed events will include explorative narratives from activists, artists, victims/survivors of sexual assault and sexual educators.