Misogyny be found everywhere, even inadvertently on the pages of Salon
In the aftermath of the terrible Santa Barbara massacre, Salon.com Assistant News Editor Prachi Gupta posted a story today in which she examined the role misogyny plays in “nerd culture.” Gupta said she wrote the piece to explore issues raised by, “Arthur Chu, a self-identified nerd who has written a gripping call-to-action in the Daily Beast.” Her piece, like several that have appeared on Salon.com this week, adds to the overdue and significant conversations being played out across social media hashtags (#YesAllWomen) and via news outlets across the country. Gupta quotes Chu:
So, a question, to my fellow male nerds:
What the fuck is wrong with us?
How much longer are we going to be in denial that there’s a thing called “rape culture” and we ought to do something about it? No, not the straw man that all men are constantly plotting rape, but that we live in an entitlement culture where guys think they need to be having sex with girls in order to be happy and fulfilled. That in a culture that constantly celebrates the narrative of guys trying hard, overcoming challenges, concocting clever ruses and automatically getting a woman thrown at them as a prize as a result, there will always be some guy who crosses the line into committing a violent crime to get what he “deserves,” or get vengeance for being denied it.
I strongly urge everyone to read both Ms. Gupta’s and Mr. Chu’s worthwhile posts, but in doing so I’d also like to point out that perhaps Salon.com’s editorial staff should examine their own pages and consider how it, inadvertent though it may be, some of their own advertisements add fuel to the notion that women should be viewed as sex objects. Take a look at the story and note the photo/headline teases “From Around the Web” window that adorns lower right sidebar in the screen capture below: Now in the scheme of things, they’re relatively minor and juvenile examples–but nonetheless, the double entendre’s are clear. Websites subscribe to these feeds to attract traffic and clicks, i.e. income and they’re ubiquitous, and I’m sure many would argue harmless. Perhaps so, but maybe the fact we have grown so accustomed to images such as these, is worth examining while we’re on the subject of the general misogyny and sexual objectification of women. Layer by layer, bit by bit, these advertising images do add up to something greater and more troubling.
Ms. Gupta notes the, “pervasive sexism” that plagues our society. With that in mind, perhaps when Chu asks, “What the fuck is wrong with us?” Salon’s editors could begin to answer that question by revisiting the sexist spam that splashed on their own pages.