Rationalizing evil: Hollywood and our society’s ‘rape culture’

Woody Allen and Mia Farrow’s daughter Dylan Farrow made public a personal account of a harrowing story this week. In a letter to the New York Times, she detailed how Allen repeatedly molested her at age 7, and asked actors who worked with him to speak out.

anything goesFarrow’s call has received radio silence from Hollywood. Farrow recounts in the letter the abuse she allegedly suffered at the hands of Allen. These are not light allegations, nor is the account anything but painful to read. … Farrow ends her letter with a very important message to Allen’s peers in Hollywood, one which has mostly fallen on deaf ears:

What if it had been your child, Cate Blanchett? Louis CK? Alec Baldwin? What if it had been you, Emma Stone? Or you, Scarlett Johansson? You knew me when I was a little girl, Diane Keaton. Have you forgotten me? Woody Allen is a living testament to the way our society fails the survivors of sexual assault and abuse. …

The silence from many in Hollywood upon hearing such vile allegations speaks volumes, and puts on display the worst of that community’s rape culture. As defined in one article in the progressive magazine The Nation, rape culture consists of the “tacit acceptance of misogyny in everything from casual conversations with our peers to the media we consume… accept[ing] the degradation of women and posit[ing] uncontrollable hyper-sexuality of men as the norm.”


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