Have we ever seen men publicly apologize for their own gender-based violence? The answer was blank, the scene was lacking, and Eve brought a new work, "Apology."
After two days of interviewing Eve Ensler, the mood was still emotional.
"Vaginal Monologues," written in 1996 and translated into 48 languages, performed in 140 countries and regions, and was featured by The New York Times as a political theater that has had a major impact over the past decade - women's bodies have been seen as a battle, and Eve encourages us to look back. The body has its own strength, do not be afraid of it, vagina is the core of life, everything from here, is it not worth a good thank you?
She then founded V-Day, promoting a global campaign to end violence against women, and leading the One Billion Rising movement, one in three women who was threatened by gender-based violence, or a billion people. She was clear and moving, and gender-based violence was not a women's issue, but a human rights issue.
And this year, she brought in new works, "Apology," a book, a sincere question, and in memory, have we seen men publicly apologize for their own gender-violence? The answer is blank, the scene is lacking, so she wrote in the name of her father, a late, never waited, return the responsibility of the apology.
Apologies, perhaps the new movement needed in this era. Ending violence begins with responsibility. Instead of asking the victim for forgiveness, we should let the perpetrator learn to apologize.
I listened very carefully, and I got goose bumps, thinking, this is probably the gender movement strategy we really need in this era.
Survivors Wait for Apologies
"I destroyed your concept of family. I forced you to betray your mother. You live in eternal self-hatred and guilt. You didn't say "yes"... You're five years old, I'm fifty-two. You have no sovereignty. I used you and abused you. When I was growing up, men had to control and hide their emotions. They never apologize. Eve, I'm sorry. Make me vulnerable, make me a father. Apology
"Apology", writing about sexual assault, the nuclear explosion that takes place in the house; writing about sexual assault, the misalignment of the relationship, the long recovery and the loss of oneself; writing about the father's past, the daughter's future behind the sexual assault. Eve and I said that the process of reading the book "Apology" I read very painful, but at the same time, very strange, also feel relieved.
I see clearly how a father sexually assaulted his daughter. How a boy grows into a father. How a girl misses herself.
Eve deliberately, with a very fine pen, to restore the scene of violence. That year she was five years old, her father near the bed, hands reached into her; she grew into a girl, she experienced her father's devilish violence, she escaped him, and want to prove to him, she tangled, and then she pulled away from herself, she has been learning, how in the hurt, can also become a love, can love people.
"As a survivor of sexual assault, I have been waiting for my father's apology. He passed away, but he didn't apologize. 」
'Survivors want to hear an apology, they want the perpetrator to admit that this is true, so survivors will know, not i think too much, not i'm crazy, not overreact, what I'm going through is true, and i'm not responsible for someone who's willing to take responsibility for it,' Eve said.
"I've been involved in the campaign to end gender-based violence for many years, we've called for male participation, we're breaking the silence, we're building shelters, we're calling for help... However, I have never seen a man who has apologized for his gender-based violence. I began to think, what is the meaning of apology? 」
Apologies require practice, templates, steps, and time.
So there was an apology.
She wrote from her father's perspective, acknowledging the existence of the incident, digging into the intentions behind it, and apologizing and returning responsibility. So we see a man's apology, public, fragile, true;
Apologize, pointing straight to a path after a sexual assault.
Survivors understand the perpetrator more than they do.
"Sometimes, in retrospect, I don't know who wrote the book. Eve recalls, "Many times, survivors of sexual assault understand their abusers more than they do." 」
It's cruel, it's a survivor's survival strategy, it must be recognized, it must be remembered - the footsteps he walked into at night, the look of the moment he was angry, the language he belittled, his breathing, his nonsense, his limbs, "the perpetrator intervened in your body, raped you, harassed you, occupied you, harassed you, beat you, and he entered you( he also entered (he enters you) . 」
It's cruel, it's all too clear. "The process of writing a book, I am very painful, but for me is very necessary, I want to allow my father, I want to use his voice, his way to write, because I want to hear. 」
Eve said that in the growing stage, she spent a lot of effort, do not want to be a physical and mentally injured person, but her father always exists, the substance and meaning, through writing, she wants to return power to themselves.
"Before I wrote Apology, my father was a monster to me, and after writing, he became an apologist; before he wrote, he was a feared object," and after writing, he became a broken boy in my heart. 」
She stressed that the explanation was not the same as the defence, which was important and could not be confused, and honestly said, "Through writing, he lost his energy on me, he lost control of me, and he finally left." 」
This departure comes from our ability to change the violent man's relationship with us, to change the main word, not "I was raped" but "he raped me." 」
Writing the book, she changed what happened to her and understood her father's past.
We worship boys, but we don't love him.
"When I tried to understand my father's past, I saw a wounded boy, a boy who had been hurt by the patriarchal community. 」
Fathers are not born monsters, perhaps by any perpetrator.
The hardest part of writing this book is that she feels the pain, loss, anger, helplessness of her father, the last child in the family, the family's pampering and anticipation. He is a boy who is not allowed to be weak, a boy who should not be curious, a boy who can't shed tears. He had been expected to grow into a boy.
"I found that the boy grew up in a cult, and we expect the boy to know all about it, and we admire the boy, but we don't really love him. We projected our ideals on them, so we didn't let them be who they were, and indirectly, we took away their humanity. 」
For the boy, the process of growing up is to hide himself, he constantly creates his own shadow (shadow man), such a shadow, he grew up, into his own family, creating the next shadow of the rotation.
"I didn't think my father was worth understanding at all, and it didn't deserve my forgiveness. After writing, I increasingly see that patriarchal societies are very harmful to men. 」
Eve's father once told her, "If I apologize, I'll be a traitor to the male camp." This means that I know this is not right. 」
So had to deny, had to pretend, Eve paused, "But, I believe, anyone who committed violence, will never escape from the sense of regret." If left unaddressed, it will lead to more violence. 」
No, a man who hurts others must have created darkness in his own body.
Next story: Interview with Eve Ensler: "Our society keeps telling survivors that you have to try to forgive, it's strange"