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Wednesday, August 20, 2014




MSU professors link hunting with sexual violence




By Page W. H. Brousseau IV

Three female Michigan State University professors studied the magazine "Traditional Bowhunter," and concluded that hunting is a form of sexual violence with animals substituted for women. They describe hunting as, "erotic heterosexual predation, sadomasochism, restraint for aggressive sexual energy, and allied with the abuse of women." I think I need to take up bowhunting.

The article entitled, "Animals, Women and Weapons: Blurred Sexual Boundaries in the Discourse of Sport Hunting" was published by the Society & Animals Forum. The genesis of the article was the 2003 video "Hunting for Bambi," which reached national attention that year when many news-outlets reported a group in Nevada was selling "hunts" which men paid thousands of dollars to shoot naked women with paintball guns. The producers of the DVD later admitted the hunters and women involved were actors. Like in high-budget porn, the star is only an "actor" and really cannot fix the cable.

Concluding that men turn bows and firearms into phallic symbols, the researchers point to terms and jargon found in the magazine in order to reaffirm their belief of displaced sexual drive. "Climax," "big'uns," and "homely cow" are but a few of the many terms with which they took issue. Two things, first, using terms out of context allows anyone to make them sexual. Second, we are talking about hunting, not sex.

The study fails to see the subject matter as merely hunting. The outrageous links between sexual violence and hunting would cause sensible readers to scoff, but remember, the authors are members of MSU faculty, which makes this paper all the more scary.

Apparently, the woman-is-an-animal argument is only valid until the kill. "When alive and being chased in a sport of hunting, animals are given human characteristics...but when dead and displayed as a trophy, anthropomorphism is no longer necessary...and the animal is simply dead." Why anthropomorphism would be necessary in the first place is not explored. Furthermore, why is it not necessary in the second place?

Indeed, their argument is that men are violent creeps who beat up on poor, cuddly animals because there are no women running around the woods. "Violence against animals and women is linked by a theory of 'overlapping but absent referents' that institutionalizes patriarchal values...animals often are the absent referents in actions and phrases that actually are about women-and women often are the absent referents for animals." Therefore, when men are hunting they do so because there are no women present, conversely, when men are with women they are doing so because there are no animals present.

Absent from this study is where the millions of female hunters fit For that is the only logical conclusion of the animal-is-a-woman and woman-is-an-animal thesis. Not far removed from their illation would be to say women obtain sexual gratification from hunting but actually wish they were sexually abusing women, or maybe themselves.

What would an academic study be these days without a conclusion that points to racism? The study encapsulated that hunting is "cultural messages that validate and exacerbate white male dominance and power." The argument of racial oppression and hunting goes out the window because one can only shoot one Black Duck a day as apposed to five of another species.

When read in its entirety, the syllogistic argument takes on the seriousness of a Mad TV skit.

Maybe it is "Traditional Bowhunter" that is laying the groundwork for world takeover. Once again, the paper's authors come through and leave the reader not disappointed. They warn that, "[T]he underlying messages of the sexualizing of women, animals, and weapons in Traditional Bowhunter cannot be dismissed simply as a hoax. They are resilient popular culture images that celebrate and glorify weapons, killing, and violence, laying the groundwork for the perpetuation of attitudes of domination, power, and control


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