Before the OP, a pop quiz! Some of the following quotes were pulled from popular UK men's magazines (FHM, Loaded, Nuts and Zoo - yankees, if you've never heard of these, think of Maxim and Stuff and you have the right idea). The rest of the quotes were from a book called The Rapist Files: Interviews With Convicted Rapists
which contains exactly what it says on the cover.
Can you guess which of the following lines came from major UK magazines and which were pulled from interviews with convicted rapists?
1. There's a certain way you can tell that a girl wants to have sex . . . The way they dress, they flaunt themselves.
2. Some girls walk around in short-shorts . . . showing their body off . . . It just starts a man thinking that if he gets something like that, what can he do with it?
3. A girl may like anal sex because it makes her feel incredibly naughty and she likes feeling like a dirty slut. If this is the case, you can try all sorts of humiliating acts to help live out her filthy fantasy.
4. Mascara running down the cheeks means they've just been crying, and it was probably your fault . . . but you can cheer up the miserable beauty with a bit of the old in and out.
5. What burns me up sometimes about girls is dick-teasers. They lead a man on and then shut him off right there.
6. Filthy talk can be such a turn on for a girl . . . no one wants to be shagged by a mouse . . . A few compliments won't do any harm either . . . ‘I bet you want it from behind you dirty whore' . . .
7. You know girls in general are all right. But some of them are bitches . . . The bitches are the type that . . . need to have it stuffed to them hard and heavy.
8. Escorts . . . they know exactly how to turn a man on. I've given up on girlfriends. They don't know how to satisfy me, but escorts do.
9. You'll find most girls will be reluctant about going to bed with somebody or crawling in the back seat of a car . . . But you can usually seduce them, and they'll do it willingly.
10. There's nothing quite like a woman standing in the dock accused of murder in a sex game gone wrong . . . The possibility of murder does bring a certain frisson to the bedroom.
11. Girls ask for it by wearing these mini-skirts and hotpants . . . they're just displaying their body . . . Whether they realise it or not they're saying, ‘Hey, I've got a beautiful body, and it's yours if you want it.'
12. You do not want to be caught red-handed . . . go and smash her on a park bench. That used to be my trick.
13. Some women are domineering, but I think it's more or less the man who should put his foot down. The man is supposed to be the man. If he acts the man, the woman won't be domineering.
14. I think if a law is passed, there should be a dress code . . . When girls dress in those short skirts and things like that, they're just asking for it.
15. Girls love being tied up . . . it gives them the chance to be the helpless victim.
16. I think girls are like plasticine, if you warm them up you can do anything you want with them.
Answers after the OP!
Hey, if you can't tell the difference, don't worry, you're not alone. In a recent study by University of Sussex and Middlesex University researchers, neither could a group of men between the ages of 18 and 46: http://www.surrey.ac.uk/mediacentre/press/2011/69535_are_sex_offenders_and_lads_mags_using_the_same_language.htm
To quote the researchers,
Dr Miranda Horvath and Dr Peter Hegarty argue that the findings are consistent with the possibility that lads’ mags normalise hostile sexism, by making it seem more acceptable when its source is a popular magazine.
Dr Horvath, lead researcher from Middlesex University, said: “We were surprised that participants identified more with the rapists’ quotes, and we are concerned that the legitimisation strategies that rapists deploy when they talk about women are more familiar to these young men than we had anticipated.”
When the participants of the study were asked to say which lines they identified with more, they tended to sympathize with the rapists' quotes more. However, when the participants of the study were told explicitly that certain quotes came from interviews with rapists, they tended to sympathize less with those quotes - even if those attributions were actually false and simply randomly assigned.
This validates a suspicion that I've held for quite a long time. The vast majority of people understand that rape is wrong. However, we don't necessarily accept that the sexist attitudes that rapists use to legitimize those actions are wrong. We want to believe, for whatever reason, that rape is an anomaly rather than a direct product of cultural sexism. We want to believe that rapists are a unique class of people - aberrant, damaged, monstrous people - rather than face the possibility that rapists are just acting upon particularly extreme versions of sexist attitudes that are also expressed by non-rapists
We hate rapists, but we don't particularly hate rape-y ideas.
Since I promised you the answers to the pop quiz:
Answers. 1. Rapist, 2. Rapist, 3. Lad mag, 4. Lad mag, 5. Rapist, 6. Lad mag, 7. Rapist, 8. Lad mag, 9. Rapist, 10. Lad mag, 11. Rapist, 12. Lad mag, 13. Rapist, 14. Rapist, 15. Lad mag, 16. Lad mag
The actual journal article hasn't been published yet; it's going to be in the British Journal of Psychology. I'm hoping to get a PDF of it once it becomes publicly available.