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We Are Man! *falls over*

2011 June 24

First there was You’ve Been Framed. Then there was Jackass. Now we have YouTube. We just can’t get enough of people doing really stupid things and the hilariously violent consequences.

Is it schadenfreude? (or ‘leedvermaak’ in Dutch – there you go, you’ve learnt something new today) Is it innocent slapstick? Who knows. But whatever it is that makes watching people fall over so compelling has been turned into a FORCE FOR GOOD by the End Violence Against Women coalition, with their new We Are Man campaign video:

I think it’s rather splendid, especially the skier who flies into the wall of snow like something out of Looney Tunes. My only niggle is that there wasn’t a more natural way of bringing up the topic of rape in the men’s conversation. I’ve overheard plenty of examples that would do the job. Though perhaps this was actually overheard somewhere, from a particularly gauche misogynist. Or maybe it’s deliberately awkward. Anyway…

There’s no one size fits all way to challenge attitudes to sexual violence, and some people will respond more to one approach than another. I reckon this is an excellent addition to the earnest My Strength is Not For Hurting campaign and the stylish Lambeth Know The Difference posters.

Why not pass it on to some people you know, especially men, and put it to the test? If you could encourage them to get their click on here and join the campaign that would be even better.


PS Interesting comment on twitter from @PabloK about the way that anti violence against women campaigns targeted at men always invoke a model of hegemonic masculinity (e.g. ‘be a man’, ‘be strong, ‘real men do/don’t’ etc) Obviously this is to do with the intended audience, but anyone got any ideas stashed away for campaign creative that offers an alternative?

3 Responses leave one →
  1. Russell permalink
    June 24, 2011

    That video is brilliant. It really sums up the way I feel, and the way I think men should feel, about this particular subject.

    To answer your question about an alternative to appealing to masculinity, the only ways that I can think of to do it would be to disparage or cast masculinity in a negative light, which I doubt would be received well by the target audience. The problem is that we need to make people revise their ideas of masculinity and I can’t think of a way to do that other than to associate the perceived positive qualities of being male with the message that that shouldn’t disparage women. Of course, the video just shows men being dumb, which is nicely amusing without necessarily being a peculiarly male trait (do Jackass etc ever actually have female participants?).

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