Aug 112013

Mudd wins street feminism design contest

RealDadsWEBHe called it a “simple, no-frills propaganda piece” whose text he liked. We concurred, and declared Kenwick resident Martin Mudd’s submission a winner in our street feminism sticker design contest. “I would love to personally plaster these all over Lexington,” Mudd stated at the end of his email submission.

Mr. Mudd will soon get the chance to do just that. His winning entry will be printed by NoC and distributed through town on lamp posts, telephone poles, magazine racks,discarded buildings, university dorm rooms, bathroom stalls, tavern walls, and any other areas needing some fatherly advice. He (and you) are welcome to join us in this endeavour.

What follows is Mudd’s artist/propaganda statement:All too often in the dominant culture, the burden of resisting and transforming systems of oppression, be it white supremacy, imperialism, or patriarchy, is borne solely by members of the oppressed group. Even worse, oppressed people are often blamed for their own oppression — as when victims of sexual violence are told, explicitly or implicitly, “you were asking for it”.

When confronted with accounts of the horrific physical and psychic violence inflicted on the bodies and minds of women (and men) by this patriarchal society, I have often wondered: “How can I, as a heterosexual male, be a good ally in the struggle?” As a man (self-identified), it is MY responsibility to oppose patriarchal violence when I see it and to confront constructively my fellow men about patriarchal behaviour.

My work as an educator often leads me to the same conclusion regarding the problem of transforming human society: we must involve children and especially adolescents in the process, by helping them learn, and, more often than we typically allow, by learning from them. Fathers must show their children that opposing rape culture is possible, by summoning up the courage to do so in daily life.

By doing this, we may build a culture of resistance which in time will lead us to a culture free of sexual violence and oppression. Like all revolutions, this transformation will take self-reflection, commitment, and above all, it will take love.

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