Lad culture is a sign of fear

Is ‘lad culture’ the outcome of men’s fear of losing their social privileges?

Sofia Capel

I read that instances of sexual harassment of girls and women are increasing rapidly in urban areas of Dhaka, Bangladesh and that yet another gang rape has taken place in India.

I also read that half of female students in the UK are subject to prevailing sexism, ‘laddism’ and a culture of harassment at University. At KU 75 per cent of the women have experienced sexism.  Should I be surprised?

Discrimination takes different forms

How can it be that the country that gave us the Suffragette movement still suffers from inequality and sexism to this great extent?

We often hear about how badly women in the Middle East and other parts of the world are being treated but discrimination and violation can take different forms and the same standards and structures that we see over there can be spotted anywhere, even at a University in Surrey.

Does anyone remember Kingston Exposed? The list of KU students and detailed information about their sexual habits and bodies was published online for anyone to see. Although both men and women were exposed on the list, the women were mainly slandered for being “ugly” or “easy” whereas the men got comments like “I expected you to do better”, hinting that the men should have had sex with more and better looking women.

Harmless banter?

So what is ‘lad culture’? Does it not sound like a lot of football playing, beer drinking, potty joking, and harmless banter dressed in a West Ham shirt? According to an NUS report it is linked to misogynistic and homophobic language and behavior.

One person taking part in the survey said that it was usually when someone talked about subjects relating to feminist theory that ‘lad culture’ became the most evident in the classroom. Simultaneously, the increase of violence against women in India has been blamed on the change in their society; more women go to work and study and may be seen out late at night.

More women are coming up

It becomes evident that men are scared to lose their privileges and power over women, regardless of where in the world we are. More women are coming up in the world and men lash out in fear because they can’t handle it.

It is human nature to be scared of change, even more so when you are risking losing your privilege. But what those men need to realise is: Everyone benefits from sexual equality. And no one is going to take away their manhood. They are still allowed to play football, joke around and ‘be boys’. Just not at the expense of women.

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