Third Wave Antirape Activism on Neoliberal Terrain: The Garneau Sisterhood

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Critical analysis paper

Third Wave Antirape Activism on Neoliberal Terrain: The Garneau Sisterhood. Lise Gotell

I was very interested in Lise Gotell’s point of view on the problems within a neoliberal government in the context of feminist activism specifically in regards to the problem of rape. Gotell discusses the activism placed in the public eye through the Garneau Sisterhood, which is an anonymous group of women based in Edmonton who campaign anti rape activism through a contemporary grassroots framework. Gotell also discusses how the criminal justice system is flawed in various procedures and practices that seem to contradict the struggle for gender and race equality. There are some cases that she discusses where feminist anti rape activism are successful in their views, but the best way for these victories to continuously “be lasting and meaningful, they must to be reasserted, reclaimed, and brought into the streets.” (Gotell, p.18) I was very shocked to learn the examples Gotell shares in her article in regards to criminal justice under neoliberal governance. One of the biggest flaws under neoliberal governance was the move of feminist organizations to ‘special interest groups’ which results in rape prevention becoming an individual problem, which in turn makes rape the ‘would be victims’ problems. (Gotell, p.7) The whole idea of rape prevention of being the sole problem of those who are statistically more susceptible to rape is absurd. Rape is a traumatic issue that should be dealt with on a communal level so that these potential victims aren’t felt left out any further. I could only imagine how a woman would feel if there government system, which should have a moral obligation to protect them, actually implies that they’re on their own in the fight against sexual abuse. Gotell explains how common sexual abuse is an enormous problem in Edmonton specifically for aboriginal women. (Gotell. p.4) She also mentions how this violence towards aboriginal...
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