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Salient. Victoria University Student Newspaper. Volume 36, Number 19. 2nd August 1973

Fucking and all that

Fucking and all that

Another aspect of the language used about women is the number of terms for sexual intercourse which reflect the fact that in our culture the woman is perceived as the passive partner or victim who is screwed/poked/had/knocked off/knocked up/fucked by the man, rather than a view of sexual intercourse as requiring equal contribution from both parties. The reasons probably lie in the socialisation of women in our society, they are not expected to be equal contributors in any interaction, physical or intellectual.

In other societies too, talk about women is often regarded as uncomplimentary to them and would never occur in their presence. In Indonesia Tanner says "Discussions about women.... always utilise some sort of familiar stylistic variations which included what was called dirty slang'. "The use of this was a strictly masculine prerogative "and should a woman enter the scene, both topic and certain aspects of style were likely to receive immediate modification." It has been argued that this shows respect for women, but at the very least one can reply that it certainly doesn't treat women as equals, and, more realistically, the change in style seems to be more akin to the embarrassment felt when a person one does not regard highly walks into a conversation which has been uncomplimentary to him.