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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
bitesize Offline
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Rape Victims and the lyrics of Robin Thicke's 'Blurred Lines' - January 3rd 2014, 12:18 AM

This thread has been labeled as triggering, particularly on the subject of rape or abuse, by the original poster or by a Moderator. The contents of this thread might therefore not be suitable for certain sensitive users. Please take this into consideration before continuing to read.

This MAY be triggering as it refers to sexual assault. If you feel like this might upset you it may be best to avoid it.




Wow, this really struck a chord with me. If anyone doesn't know the song - despite it being the most-bought single in a few places last summer - it's about how girls may be acting like they don't want to have sex, but they secretly do: 'You know you want it'. It has caused a lot of controversy and I have to admit I only recently listened to how shocking some of the lyrics actually are. Seeing this article really brought it home.

http://thesocietypages.org/socimages/2013/09/17/from-the-mouths-of-rapists-the-lyrics-of-robin-thickes-blurred-lines-and-real-life-rape/?fb_action_ids=10153630450490551&fb_action_types=o g.likes&fb_source=other_multiline&action_object_ma p=%5B389382081187279%5D&action_type_map=%5B%22og.l ikes%22%5D&action_ref_map=%5B%5D


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Re: Rape Victims and the lyrics of Robin Thicke's 'Blurred Lines' - January 3rd 2014, 12:55 AM

I'm sorry to be rude, but this is ancient news!

Then again, this was big with me and my SVU fandom buddies back in the summer. Considering we watch a show about rape victims, it's understandable we were the first to catch wind of it??? It definitely caused a riot on my Twitter timeline, people were bashing it left and right. [edited]

Anyways, being serious and on topic now. I agree that this is utterly disgusting. It doesn't matter what the real meaning behind the song is, the context is if a chick supposedly wants it, the guy's giving it to her. Whether she actually wants it or not. Rape is rape, nobody wants to be raped unless they're into rape fantasy which I don't even think happens in real life. Just in anime. But, my point is, who wants to get raped. Why is there a song about rape (again, who cares about the real meaning of the song!) so popular and publicized.

I just remembered, another thing they were saying that it promoted rape culture. The belief that if women act or dress a certain way, it means they want it. Men will act however the fuck they want and find a way to get said woman into bed, either with or without her consent.

Last edited by Spicy_; January 4th 2014 at 01:02 AM. Reason: Inappropriate content
   
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Re: Rape Victims and the lyrics of Robin Thicke's 'Blurred Lines' - January 3rd 2014, 02:47 AM

I never really looked into the lyrics of the song before (mainly because I despise how the song sounds and turn it without paying attention to it) but dang. O.o Now that it's laid out.


   
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Re: Rape Victims and the lyrics of Robin Thicke's 'Blurred Lines' - January 3rd 2014, 07:53 AM

And that explains why I take absolutely no liking to pop music or anything of that sort. Their lyrics are filled with more shit than a cesspit.




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Re: Rape Victims and the lyrics of Robin Thicke's 'Blurred Lines' - January 3rd 2014, 12:20 PM

I'm going to take a risk and stick my neck out on this one: I honestly don't believe the lyrics of the song necessarily bear out the interpretation which has been ascribed to them in certain quarters. Don't get me wrong, as song lyrics go this one is a steaming pile of garbage, but taking the lyrics as found (and without adding anything to fill in the gaps) I feel the claims of it being "rapey" are a bit eyebrow-raising.

Now, before anyone thinks I've completely taken leave of my senses and rationality, some points to consider. One, I majored in law so interpretation of wording and context is basically my bread and butter. Two, as part of my degree we did a case study on rape and the criminal justice system, and my final year dissertation was an evaluation of restorative justice programmes in relation to victims of rape and sexual assault. As such, I've read enough journal articles on the impact of rape and sexual assault and everything which stems from that to recognise how traumatic these events are, and I do not seek to trivialise or dumb this down at all. Sexual offences are some of the most grave which can be committed, and I am a firm believer that they should be regarded as such and that attempts at "victim blaming" are inexcusable. People can and should know better.

My main issue with this argument is that it appears to rely on very selective choice of phrases and framing thereof. To illustrate this, I believe the article cited is guilty of taking the lyrics out of context. Example: it takes the phrase "I know you want it", posts a series of anti-rape pictures in relation to it (all of which are valid in relation to the claims rapists and would-be rapists make, I should add - that isn't at issue), and then does likewise for the phrase "you're a good girl". However, it misses out the fact that the lyrics actually go like this in the second part of the chorus:

"I know you want it
But you're a good girl" (emphasis added)

The inclusion of that word, omitted from the article which focuses only on the first part of the chorus, changes the context of the phrases significantly. The reference to "blurred lines", instead of being regarding where consent begins and ends (as alleged in the article), is in relation to whether the woman is in fact interested in sex or not. To reinforce this, the beginning of the song starts with these words:

"If you can't hear what I'm trying to say
If you can't read from the same page
Maybe I'm going deaf,
Maybe I'm going blind
Maybe I'm out of my mind"

In short: "If you don't agree with what I've said, then maybe I've just lost the plot completely." That puts any potential fault/mistake/etc in terms of the woman's point of view on the part of the man, not the woman. That is also in stark contrast, and conflict, with the viewpoint that the song is all about a man forcing himself upon a woman. By taking particular sections of the song, you can ascribe to the whole two meanings which are irreconcilable, which probably means it's not entirely down to the song itself. A paragraph from this article in the Guardian (a UK newspaper for those unfamilar with it) sums it up quite well:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blurred Lines: the most controversial song of the decade
Blurred Lines is not about rape in the same way that Cop Killer is about the fantasy of killing cops, so it is a question of interpretation. If you don't think the song's narrator is willing to have sex without consent, then the song seems at worst sleazy, and the reaction overblown. If, however, you think that the concept of "blurred lines" sends a dangerous message to listeners, then it's explosive.
In short, it comes down to listener perspective. If you want the song to sound like it's about rape, or if you are triggered by material which sounds like it may be about rape, odds are the song is going to sound like it's about rape. If you listen to the song without any preconceptions either way, or have not had experiences which could make such songs triggering material, then it's more difficult to read that message into it and it's just a pretty shoddy pop record.

That doesn't mean that Thicke et al should be let off the hook entirely, of course. It's a very sleazy record, the rap by TI is deeply questionable, and the video is crass beyond belief and certainly doesn't help those involved. But whether it deserves to be the scapegoat for the music industry when it comes to songs excusing rape or such like is very debatable, particularly given there are likely to be far worse offenders out there. That it has brought fresh attention to the sexualisation of pop music, and wider attitudes towards rape victims, is of course to be welcomed and is long overdue. But it does also run the risk of blunting the impact of such attention, as the song and all involved are made out to be pariahs when the evidence doesn't quite stack up for that. People may well look at it, conclude they can't see what the fuss is about and thereby ignore the wider, far more important issues. That is what I find of most concern.

So, to conclude: the song is sleazy and I'm in no rush to buy a copy, but I believe the applicability or otherwise of the rape context is down to the listener. For my part, it isn't there in its own right in the words used, and in particular in the round rather than being snipped out selectively. Evidently others will reach a very different conclusion, and that is their right, but in the context of challenging victim stereotypes I think there are more effective targets for such efforts than what is, frankly, a pretty crap summer song.

As is good academic practice, I welcome any comments or points I may have overlooked - this is very much a first draft effort.


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If you're referring to dr2005's response, it's not complex, however, he has a way with words .
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Re: Rape Victims and the lyrics of Robin Thicke's 'Blurred Lines' - January 4th 2014, 01:43 AM

I do take issue with the lyrics, but as with any written words, interpretations happen so I respect and understand Dave's view of the song as much as I acknowledge those who find it utterly deplorable.

Thicke's defence of the song was what bothered me. I'm not a woman, I'm not female, so I can't claim to have the same reaction to the lyrics as women might and have done (despite finding them horrific anyway), but Thicke saying that it's a misogynistic song, and that that's okay because he's a married man is totally stupid. He said something along the lines of "what a pleasure it is to degrade women!" because he's doing it as someone who is not single, and that the men in the video are mostly middle aged and married. Easy enough to Google this if you'd like to double check. Like you can't be offensive or sexist or misogynistic or promote rape culture once you're middle aged and have a ring on your finger.




   
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