During the 16 Days of Activism to Eliminate Violence Against Women, we will be sharing 16 ways you can be an ally and do your bit to end violence against women.
On days 4 and 5, we are asking you not only to speak out about violence against women, but also to challenge casual sexism and unhelpful stereotypes about women wherever you see them. Sexist attitudes create a world where violence against women is tacitly accepted, as they reinforce old-fashioned views about women being subordinate to men – this legitimises the controlling behaviour of abusers and creates an environment where we are more likely to ask a woman why she didn’t do more to prevent her own abuse than ask a man why he committed that abuse. Similarly, attitudes that reduce a woman to her body parts or see her only as an object dehumanises women in the eyes of our society and creates an atmosphere where domestic and sexual violence can thrive. This excellent article from Libby Brooks for the Guardian explains all: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/sep/13/casual-sexism-victims-police-it-minor-sexual-aggressions
On a related note, we also ask you not to buy media or products that promote unhelpful stereotypes about women. Because as long as sexist, objectifying, judgmental rubbish about women continues to be consumed, it will continue to be printed.
Need a handy tool for spotting objectification? Check out the Chips Test! https://drcarolineheldman.com/2014/10/24/how-to-spot-sexual-objectification-the-chips-test/