Buy a print of this cartoon HERE.
I read R. L. Stollar’s post yesterday, What It Means to Take Abuse Seriously. It’s a must read. And it inspired today’s cartoon. Thanks Mr. Stollar.
I’ve learned a lot this last year about how the abused share their experiences and how they are received.
Many people immediately dismiss the message because of the medium it is delivered in:
- usually in the shape of a woman
- frequently upset
- often emotionally charged
- sometimes hysterical
- mostly uncorroborated
- generally unbelievable
- always disturbing
Here is a relevant quote from my favorite philosopher alive, Slavoj Žižek, in his work, Violence: Six Sideways Reflections (Big Ideas/Small Books):
“A dispassionate conceptual development of the typology of violence must by definition ignore its traumatic impact. Yet there is a sense in which a cold analysis of violence somehow reproduces and participates in its horror. A distinction needs to be made, as well, between (factual) truth and truthfulness: what renders a report of a raped woman (or any other narrative of a trauma) truthful is its very factual unreliability, its confusion, its inconsistency. If the victim were able to report on her painful and humiliating experience in a clear manner, with all the data arranged in a consistent order, this very quality would make us suspicious of its truth.”
When people share with me their stories of abuse, I believe them. Do you?
Consider joining our community The Lasting Supper, where we will believe you when you share your experiences.