By Susan Brownmiller
Susan Brownmiller’s groundbreaking bestseller uncovers the tradition of violence opposed to ladies with a devastating exploration of the background of rape—now with a brand new preface via the writer exposing the undercurrents of rape nonetheless current today
Rape, as writer Susan Brownmiller proves in her startling and significant publication, isn't really approximately intercourse yet approximately energy, worry, and subjugation. For hundreds of thousands of years, it's been considered as an appropriate “spoil of war,” used as a weapon by way of invading armies to weigh down the need of the conquered. The act of rape opposed to girls has lengthy been cloaked in lies and fake justifications.
It is neglected, tolerated, even inspired via governments and armed forces leaders, misunderstood via police and protection enterprises, freely hired by means of domineering husbands and enthusiasts, downplayed by means of clinical and lawyers extra vulnerable to “blame the victim,” and, possibly such a lot shockingly, authorised in supposedly civilized societies world wide, together with the United States.
Against Our Will is a vintage paintings that has been broadly credited with altering triumphing attitudes approximately violence opposed to ladies by way of awakening the general public to the genuine and carrying on with tragedy of rape all over the world and in the course of the ages.
Selected via the New York occasions booklet Review as a great ebook of the yr and incorporated one of the ny Public Library’s Books of the Century, opposed to Our Will is still a vital paintings of sociological and historic significance.
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Extra resources for Against Our Will: Men, Women and Rape
Instead of reacting by doing the opposite, we need ways to move forward that don’t resemble our original chains, even if they are fastened backwards. A systemic vision of the way sexuality, sex, and gender are hierarchically ordered and organized (and limited) is more fruitful than a reaction that is typified by doing the opposite of whatever feels constraining.  Not only are we still setting limits and creating new hierarchal sexual expectations when we deﬁne a liberated sexuality as one that is the direct opposite of the current socially acceptable and viable sexuality, but we are also continuing to deﬁne this liberated sexuality by that which caged us in the ﬁrst place.
The shaping of the categories of race and sex was part of a longer history of hierarchy. Additionally, just as the speciﬁc era of the witch hunts lasted a couple centuries, so too was the construction of race an ongoing process, like in the example of the Irish not being included into whiteness until later. Also, after the Civil War, lynching was a prominent way to terrorize—to discipline—Black people into submission. “Before lynching could be consolidated as a popularly accepted institution, however, its savagery and its horrors had to be convincingly justiﬁed.
For instance, just because promiscuity is a nonnormative sexual desire/practice doesn’t mean that to be in the act of challenging such norms that one must participate in promiscuity, per se. For instance, I can reject and struggle against the sexual/gender status quo without the need to physically embody/practice certain non-normative sexualities. Sexual acts themselves (or lack thereof) are not what we are challenging as queer radicals. We are struggling against sexualities and sexual acts being categorized and ordered into hierarchical systems that privilege certain practices/desires over others.