[quote quote=3715]I never had trouble with the “discipling” scene because it is so contextual to the eighteenth century and I used discipline before seeing in this discussion because that is what is and I agree there is some equality in it. . In the “domination” scene when Claire says Jamie is hurting her and he continues [not when she says he’s crushing her and he responds] he really does want to possess her essence–she will call him master–but he cannot possess her without losing himself. It is the male instinct to “own” that is so troubling; I think his losing himself and her joining in the passion redeems the scene. Their union is complete and mutual. I was raped by a burglar on my 22nd birthday ( many years ago) and rape has nothing to do with sex–it is a crime of terrorism. I also defended sexual harassers for many years. I finally said to my husband, ” I cannot do another s**k my d*** case.” I would have to sit impassively as opposing counsel inevitably played a tape recording of my client saying something to that effect–usually exactly those words. Now I teach college students (both sexes) who believe women bring about their own rape. Barb, my niece was an actress in Hollywood ( her best friend still is and works frequently) and they have discussed this issue frequently. Seeing my niece bare her breasts in a film was quite an experience. I, also, do not know how to get this in the right place. It is amazing and comforting to hear all the brave, strong voices here. As for the question of “Are you a feminist?” very few of the student will raise their hands. I then ask, “Do you think women should have the right to vote?” Do you think that women should equal rights to men in society and in the workplace?” All the embrace these questions. the answer: “Guess what, you are a feminist.” Now I am rambling.
I also wrestle with the idea that people (men or women) don’t want to use the term “feminist” … and I hope that Emma Watson’s UN speech , which got quite a bit of traction, will help people understand that feminism isn’t about one gender over another, but about supporting the right for all people to realize their full potential. We have glorified “male” traits and gender in most societies for years, and need to swing the balance a bit … ensuring that girls are able to get education, not be forced into marriage, etc., as well as allowing boys to express caring and nurturing behavior. That’s oversimplifying, but it’s a start – raising awareness.