30.6.06

'DID YOU ASK FOR IT?'



1000 clothes in 40 days clothing meter counts 99 !!

Our volunteers are in Bangalore, Hyderabad, Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Kashmir, Kolkata, Jaipur, Portblair, Singapore, Pune,...to contribute your one garment, write to us and get in touch with your city Blank Noise volunteer!

If you would like to volunteer your time and collect clothes towards the Blank Noise Campaign, Did You Ask For It? from your city, contact us at blurtblanknoise AT gmail.com

About 'Did You Ask For It?'


Whenever an incident of eve teasing or street sexual harassment takes place, the first thing most women themselves and the listeners to the incident ask is ' what was she wearing?' ,' did she 'provoke him'?

Testimonials of street sexual harassment/ eve teasing from women across age groups, and from diverse places tells us that women get sexually harassed in no matter what they wear.

Blank Noise also believes that women do have a right to feel good about themselves, and wear what they please, without being sexually violated, because 'you' think she's 'avaliable'.

We question, defy, and attempt to put an end to the argument that women 'ask for it'. To establish 'asking for it' as a mere excuse for sexual harassment, we are asking all women to send in one garment that they wore when they were eve teased.

Each contributed garment comes from someone's incident as a testimony, or a witness and forms part of a larger collective.

You could chose to send text, describing yourself, or the incident along with the garment.

The garments given will be strung together and installed in a public site. We require 1000 or more clothes from participants all over. The installation of clothing testimonials will travel across cities Bangalore, Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad and Chennai...

We have collected 99 clothes so far. 901 more to go!
The clothes collected include saris, salwar kameez, school uniforms, track pants, t shirts, jeans..

Thankyou Sridevi, Gayathri, Manjula, Prasheila, Payal, Bhumika, Ratna, Naini, Sakthy, Rajvi, Meena, Sahana, Neha, Tanisha, Shravanti, Sneha, Sharda, Suren and his friends/ sister in Chennai, Naveed and Asiya from Baramulla Kashmir, Aarti, Pratima, ....

To participate, volunteer, send clothes contact us at 98868 40612 or email at blurtblanknoise AT gmail.com

thankyou for participating

There is power in numbers.

25 comments:

  1. when do we meet next??

    pallavi
    p.s- trying to get thru with the malhar authorities bout intervention...

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  2. Read this:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/women/story/0,,1811336,00.html

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  3. krishna8:17 pm

    u done a really good project. i am a social worker 2days back i read abt ur organisation,,,,,,,,,simply exelent

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  4. hey, i fully support your project. here is my link (belated) for your blog-a-thon.

    cheers,

    http://muskann.blogspot.com/

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  5. Rajorshi12:11 pm

    stumbled upon this from anirudh dutta's quizblog.

    the idea of putting pics of eve teasers is brilliant.

    i thought i'll post this message to show my solidarity, but where does my "solidarity" disappear when i see such cases happening around me?

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  6. rajorshi12:38 pm

    Me again.

    Being a guy, i wont be able to supply any textile-related support to this project.

    Being an indian outside india, cant physically contribute.

    so is there a way we can take this project international? the city i live in has the sameproblem - the south asian immigrant men (mostly lower class) cant stop leching.
    other men dont, as simple as that.

    would like to help spread the word in some way, not sure how.

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  7. Sahil7:18 pm

    HAi i m a male but i appriciate what ru doing is nice step because the youth of india kan only change the dirt lying in the socity.so BEST OF LUCK 4 u'r noble cause ,in case u want any help u can contact me -Athar_Faizi2005@yahoo.com:I m frm Indore {M.P}

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  8. I thought I wud blogroll ur project on my blog, as well as get my friends come and visit. :)Hope that wud help!

    May Ur Cause Win!
    :)

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  9. rajorshi, sahil: mail us at blurtblanknoise@gmail.com with your details and we can take forward how you can help!

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  10. Your idea is creative and captures the imagination. It will rivet the attention of the press and every decent Indian citizen. I am from Singapore; I will pray this project succeeds in its goals.

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  11. i am from singapore and im reading the "today" newspaper about u guys. it says here that in indian life 90% of the female students have experienced sexual harrassment. and government figures released last month showed that across india , a woman is raped every half and hour. the newspaper is dated monday,july 10 2006.

    i came to this blog out of curiosity. i am a male but i feel for women being raped and harrassed and all. it has always been a disgust for me to read about rape cases or to hear them in the news. i always wonder what if the woman is my sister,my wife,my daughter, my friend or worst off,my mom. what exactly would i do or react? i dare not think of the possible actions i would do.

    sincerely, i hope u guys fulfil what u're set out to achieve. this is a good cause and i support this cause. =]

    18 male singapore.

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  12. Hi lex

    thankyou!

    If possible can you mail me the link to the singapore newspaper?

    how is it in singapore?

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  13. Hi Jasmeen,
    I live in Singapore and a friend of mine from Bangalore told me about Blank Noise when it first started, and I've been following its progress since.

    I have written a post in support of your campaign.

    With regards to your question on the situation, I would say that Singapore does not have outright eve-teasing (considering that law enforcement is strict), but I do believe there is also the disturbing underlying current of "she was asking for it". I would say that our women's troubles are of another sort altogether... but perhaps when I have the time I will write to you about it. :)

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  14. i've mailed the screen shot and the link to u already.

    if anyone wants to view them -->

    http://www.todayonline.com/articles/129562.asp

    hmmm, singapore's warm and cold lately. im kinda sick now and them. hah. well, hope its everything's alright for u guys there. =]

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  15. Congratulations for this marvellous idea! My best wishes for all of you, brave women. Keep up the good work!

    From Chile,

    La Hormiga Cantora
    ("The Singing Ant")

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  16. thankyou lex! I have linked it to the blog!

    Do keep me posted

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  17. Hi again Jasmeen. Here you have a link from a chilean newspaper telling about your project ->
    http://www.lun.com/modulos/catalogo/paginas/2006/07/10/LUCSTIN28LU1007.htm

    I've done a review about this page in my blog. And a permanent link was added. I hope that could help you a little, girls.

    About the campaign, I think chilean women could sent clothing if you add an address or something like a P.O. box.

    I'll stay in touch! :)

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  18. nice work..
    Hope the count improves !!

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  19. Your cause is great.
    Your way of doing it is different.
    And your enthusiasm very appreciable.

    Cheers...

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  20. Diane3:36 pm

    I'm Singaporean, living in Australia, married to an Indian, and I wish I could send you an article of clothing!
    Whilst in India, I wasn't victim to verbal teasing but worse still, I faced that oogling look that was so disgusting it was enough to make you want to hit them for staring so hard.
    Pls let me know if you have any reps in Melbourne for your project and Good Luck!

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  21. Hi Diane

    absolutely, sexual harassment is in the ways of looking, touching, can be verbal...any kind of act that crosses the limits.

    we dont have a volunteer to collect clothes yet....on that note, would you be interested? or know others who would be? here's a start :)

    do mail! thankyou

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  22. Sujatha1:01 am

    Hi
    This is Sujatha writing in from Chicago,u.S.A.Wow this is such a lovely project.My friend Christina from Singapore sent me this link.
    If I knew that someone would start this project down the years..I would have preserved my quota of clothes and sent it to you guys...
    If every woman comes out honestly with courage I am sure you will be having a real huge collection..it would run into lakhs ..I really appreciate this and wish you good luck.Anything I can do from here will be glad to help but here in U.S.there has been no incidence of eve -teasing at all in the past 5 years what ever clothes anybody wears,goes to prove how lame and stupid the Indian society's excuses are.Its the crooked perception of society there that tries to take an easy way out for evry problem by victimising the victim.
    Sujatha Sundaram
    Chicago,IL
    s_sujatha_in@yahoo.com

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  23. Hi,

    I am an Indian girl studying at Stanford University, US. I (like probably every other Indian girl) have also experienced a whole LOT of crap in my life in India, and I was angry, and humiliated and embarrassed but my elders always told me to calm down and either not go there again, or dress "more decently" or forget about it. Yes it is disturbingly true that (forget about men), it is the women of my mom's generation who first and foremost come out against girls of our generation by saying that we were "asking for it" .... !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I have been doing a lot of research on this recently, and I LOVE your project for spearheading this in India. I plan on writing a book about my experiences in my first year studying in America and the anger of constantly being labelled "American" just because I am now not afraid to be vocal about my thoughts that sexual harassment (staring,verbal or physical) is NOT okay and dress does NOT matter. Women do NOT dress FOR men, and it is perfectly justified that they be allowed to wear whatever they want to, because it is their freedom and right to gender equality.
    But again, two grave questions:
    1) Where do you draw the line between what is "acceptable" and what is really public nudity or inacceptable?
    I think it should be a woman's personal choice and as long as her parts are not hanging out or something, she should be allowed to roam about freely without tension in whatever she chooses to wear. But then is cleavage showing okay?
    The problem is (again forget about men) most women do not check themselves while bitchingly judging other women and saying that she deserved it....I read a post about this on your blog and would love it if you could email its results/findings to me at riddhi@stanford.edu
    2) How do we confront? education is one thing, but it will take time. meanwhile we need to step up and do something and not just TAKE it.
    I read this and found it EXTREMELY A MUST READ.
    "When it comes to direct encounters, Langelan says that appeasement and aggression aren't so effective, or are actually counterproductive. Assertiveness is not enough. In confrontation, a women immediately specifies the abusive behaviour, publicly describes it as harassment, and holds the harasser responsible for it (p. 106). According to Langelan:

    "A woman who engages in a clear, principled confrontation confounds not only the harasser's sexist expectations, but the entire social pattern of male dominance and power behind his decision to harass. She does not act like a docile, compliant victim and does not passively accept the status quo. Faced with sexist aggression, she does not relinquish her rights -- she reclaims them as a matter of principle. In the process, she makes it personally difficult for the harasser to continue his behavior; she also creates the beginnings of a new social structure, one in which harassment is no longer a cost-free game for men. And because most confrontations take place in public settings, she educates everyone else around her as well. A good confrontation can be a dramatic piece of street theater, with a clear and compelling message for the audience. Each time a woman confronts, she turns up the pressure on the old social structure, weakens the old patterns of expected behavior and the old social norms that excuse and condone harassment. Like the aggregate effect of harassment, the cumulative effect of women's acts of confrontation can change the social and political structure. Where harassment abridges freedom, confrontation expands it." (pp. 82-83).

    Langelan gives lots of information and examples about how to proceed. In a confrontation, a woman names the behaviour, holds the harasser accountable, makes direct honest statements, demands that the harassment stop, says that all women should be free of sexual harassment, sticks to her own agenda, uses appropriate body language, responds at the appropriate level and ends the interaction on her own terms (pp. 115-125).

    While Langelan's analysis is clear and insightful, the highlight of the book for me is the success stories. Told in the first person, there are stories of children resisting harassers; there are cases in the workplace, in male-dominated jobs, in public areas; there are cases involving ministers, landlords, burglars and rapists. There are cases showing what men can do as allies of women. There are stories of confrontations by groups of women. Few of these stories fit the ideal model of a confrontation. In some, women relied on formal procedures. In others, women became verbally aggressive and, in Langelan's view, probably were less effective as a result. Langelan provides valuable commentary about each story, relating it to the principles she has laid out.

    My colleague Rebecca Albury pointed out to me a major risk in focussing on success stories of women confronting harassers: it may support a "blame-the-victim" orientation. The responsibility seems to be put on women to stop harassment; those who are unable or unwilling to confront harassers or who are unsuccessful in their efforts can be made to feel guilty for their inadequacies. Instead, institutions and society generally, and men in particular, should be making efforts to establish an atmosphere in which harassment is widely detested. How to do this effectively is not so obvious, though, and it will not happen overnight. It seems to me that empowering women to use confrontation when they want to can be one important measure among many taken against harassment. One of the features of confrontation, as described by Langelan, is that accountability is immediately sheeted home to the harasser. So there is some potential for countering any implication that responsibility falls on the woman.

    The method of confrontation definitely belongs in the pragmatic school of nonviolent action: it is action designed to stop the harassment by making the costs to the harasser greater than the benefits. A different approach might put more emphasis on changing the attitudes of the men who harass. Langelan devotes relatively little attention to persuasion. Confrontation may lead to changed attitudes, but its main focus is on behaviour, namely on ending the harassment.

    Back Off! is essential reading for campaigners against sexual harassment. It provides an initial bridge between feminist self-defence and nonviolent action theory. Most of all, it is a wonderfully inspiring account of and by women who have stood up for themselves."
    ==========>from "http://www.uow.edu.au/arts/sts/bmartin/pubs/96BRnvt.html"

    thanks,
    -Riddhi

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  24. Anonymous10:30 am

    Mmmmm... I wonder if its simply men who harass?! I know of a case where Rebecca Albury sexually harassed a female student!
    The university concerned closed ranks!

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