While this article is great stuff, I’m never entirely sure about the phrase rape culture, cause as I see it it’s more like an overall violence and dominance culture of which women are part of and play a role in (I’m thinking prisons, gender roles, war, corporate greed, enviro damage etc).
I’m also kind of tripped up, frankly, by the idea of enthusiastic consent, not because I don’t want people to be enthusiastic (OF COURSE I DO!), but because the word itself sounds like you are jumping on the bed raring to go, rather than being willing/affirmative/etc. Maybe you are bored and say yes to pass time. It’s still affirmative, even if you don’t really get into it. I mean, it’s ok to have bored sex if you are ok with it.
Point is, there are yeses and they need to be there whether bed bounding or bored, and perhaps if sex was more akin to dining out, if it were less fraught and less part of a scarcity model, less part of a commodity model and more a lovely communication people shared with less pressure and shame it would be easier to figure out when yes is meant and when no means no. Not that no is actually hard to understand.
Maybe we’d be able to deal better with things like crappy sex, bad sex, regrettable sex, sex that leaves us feeling shamed, and also be people who just couldn’t be aroused by someone so drunk they’d be passing out. Like..ugh. Who does that?
So long as the whole culture is part of dominance and oppression then men are also affected by it and badly and it leaves some shadow territory for women to consider (women who slut shame for example or also may have manipulated men or other women). Unpopular idea, I get it, and I may be damned for it. I just think the picture is bigger. And really complicated. And means getting deeper into gender, dynamics around culturally constructed stories about how sex is supposed to be, agency and what it means, and models of trade and commodity rather than collaboration and compassion.
I want an end of Dominance Culture personally and I won’t be satisfied until that idea is part of common parlance. If we could embue the society with values of compassion and vulnerability and sharing and hold a model of plenty, rather than scarcity and competition, I think we’d see oppressions, like rape, decline.