LiveWire

Thursday, May 25, 2006

An intervention



This sunday, the 28th of May, at 5 pm, there will be an intervention by volunteers of the Blank Noise Project from Chennai at Besant Nagar Beach.

The idea is to silently confront eve teasers/harassers of any sort, even lecherous staring.

******

Here are excerpts from their home page:

Blank: no form, no meaning.
Noise: heightens, builds, breaks form.
Blank Noise put together are two words that contradict themselves.

We experience eve teasing daily. It is a sexual violation but we ignore it. At the same time, we structure our lives to avoid the occurrence of it - by 'dressing decently', 'coming back home on time', etc, thereby making unwanted rules for ourselves and not recognizing ourselves as citizens.

This daily silent experience of street sexual harassment is what comes closest to the term blank noise.

Blank Noise is interventionist, and critically reflective of the issue. It seeks to confront, and create communitoes through public art. Blank Noise works with people through performance, blogging, and street intereventions.

This is a public art project seeking to address eve teasing. There are several ways to address an issue and we choose the language of public and community art.

Is it all about the women?

It may be called 'eve' teasing and spoken of as if it happens only to women but we have found that men also experience street sexual harassment. They just have a different way of looking at their bodies and dealing with the issue. As women, we are taught to protect our bodies and we are layered with ideas of modesty and shame. Izzat. Lajja. Men are expected to be men – mard - and they are supposed to deny that they can be victims, too.


So a roughly typical reaction might be – yes, I got felt up but I pity the bugger because he's gay.

Eve teasing, therefore, despite its rather misleading nomenclature, is not an all-girl issue but a societal one. By being a mute witness, by teasing (sexually harassing) or by ignoring/ denying the issue, we are responsible for it.

All you need to do to join Blank Noise is get in touch with us. If you feel strongly enough about eve-teasing and are willing to do something about it, Blank Noise would be glad to have you on board. And we can use any skills you have from writing to artwork to design to being net-savvy or just being willing to give your time to spreading awareness.

Currently, Blank Noise participants include researchers, college students, journalists, technicians, activists, an architect, and young professionals. There are both men and women, and just happen to fall between the age groups of 17-30 years.

******

Calling everyone who wishes to change the way things are run. Do your part. Make a difference. It may be a trickle, so what?

Send an email to blurtblanknoise@gmail.com with your city name in the subject line to participate.

For more details: http://blanknoiseproject.blogspot.com/

2 Comments:

  • but eve teasing has reduced so much thn y r u jus again bringing up to the surface.... like u wanna alarm the ppl huh ... hey guyz ... were d heck r u ?? ... we havnt heard some nice rape/tease/ arrest in the paper...

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:26 PM  

  • ye, that s coz it doesnt get reported in the paper. nobody has ever 'reported' a guy brushing against their breasts or rubbing their dicks against their back. coz if they did, you wouldnt have space to print ur 'regular' news. u dont read about this in the paper, you hear about it when ur best friend is opening her heart out to you aftr 5 years.

    and do u actually read the paper or not? dont u know abt sarika shah? u want someone to die to know that eve teasing exists? and wat abt the rape of a girl inside a police station? is that not news enough for u?

    By Blogger Livewire, at 7:31 PM  

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