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April 10, 2015 12:44 PM   Subscribe

"Things Left Unspoken: Erasure in Online Discussion of Domestic Violence" - Trigger Warning: Domestic violence, mentions of violent actions, physical abuse, sexual assault. By Catherine [Kiran/Rin] Oliver at Model View Culture.

Catherine [Kiran/Rin] Oliver's bio.

Information about demisexuality at
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome (3 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite

Regarding just the demisexual part of the post: it's an interesting usage of "sexual orientation." I'm most familiar with the sense of that term in which the orientation refers to whom a person feels attraction for, rather than the emotional circumstances under which they do or do not feel inclined to actually engage in physical/sexual contact with another person. It's interesting to see this kind of linguistic and cultural innovation happening in real time.
posted by clockzero at 1:22 PM on April 10, 2015 [1 favorite]

Rin makes the important point that domestic violence can affect anyone. They are not the only person who has said this, but the more voices we hear on the subject, the better. I'm sorry that Rin experienced such horrors from someone they trusted. In a marginalized community, the isolation abuse brings is magnified by invisibility in society, and by suppression by others in the community who don't want to satisfy cultural stereotypes. It's mindfuck on top of mindfuck. What a brave article.
posted by Beethoven's Sith at 2:40 PM on April 10, 2015 [1 favorite]

I've been dismayed for a while about the language around trigger warnings within the context of Liberal thought and communities, and Rin touches on that and how it can be used to try to silence people who have a problem or are currently being hurt. The phenomena reminds me strongly of Martin Luther King Jr.'s Letter from a Birmingham Jail where he talks about how people ostensibly on "his side" would ask him to wait and be patient, or John Lewis' experience with having members of the Black Civil Rights Movement ask him to dial back his rhetoric - and I wonder how many women experienced being undercut, especially considering they were often told to go march with the wives of other Civil Rights Leaders instead of being recognized as Civil Rights Leaders of their own.

I keep hoping we reach a point where there can be a Civil Rights Movement which doesn't replicate trying to silence the people at the margins. I head of a few places within the Occupy movement where they seemed to try to do this (the Oakland Occupy Movement's conversation with local Native communities comes to mind) but so often it seems like those interactions become punch lines or evidence that some progressives are really unreasonable and obsessed with communication and not action.

But it's communication which connects us with each other, and it's communication which humanizes us, and its communication that can break cycles of abuse and violence, and it's communication which seems so important to any sort of progress. I hope and pray that responsibility about communication, the words we use, when we use them, and how we treat other people through our words continues to become more important. I'm impressed by Rin's willingness to put themself out there in terms of being honest and vulnerable. It takes real courage to be hurt and share the hurt in a world where we are so often blamed for being hurt.
posted by Deoridhe at 5:27 PM on April 10, 2015 [1 favorite]

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