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Saying 'me, too' did not effortlessly mean that everyone would speak in the same voice, and nor should it imply so.The meaning of solidarity is to come together in shared experience, however incongruent and heterogeneous.As a society, sexual violence is our collective burden to engage with, and so are our solidarities.Harassment and violence are not isolated, exceptional realities affecting a 'kind' of victim against a 'kind' of perpetrator, but simply the everyday and everywhere in their magnitude.Some of us asked other, more uncomfortable questions.What could solidarity with women in India's most conflict-ridden zones like Kashmir be?In those days, people in a lot of places figured this was pretty workable. You learned to calculate and you could hit just about anything. Water fountains on the town square said White and Colored, White folks and black people didn’t mix at all. In downtown Athens–there was about a block of it, around the square–there was the Limestone Drugstore. Kids came in like hoplites or cohorts or hordes, or anyway one of those things in history and leaned their BB guns near the door, with their baseball gloves too usually. We didn’t shoot each other with the BB guns because we just didn’t. We didn’t need the po-leese to tell us not to do it because it wasn’t something we did.
When they kounter you, your hands are tied behind you. age 22..." (2000), a film on premarital pregnancy, our hero and his heroine look at each other intensely, pause to hug in a characteristically filmy fashion despite all that time wasted sheepishly sprinting in the lush meadow, lolling and rolling through the grass to portray the experience of foreplay.
Were Jyoti to survive, said Sushma Swaraj, presently Minister of External Affairs of India, she would be a a living corpse.
Even if a victim of sexual violence survives biological death, as Jyoti Singh did not, statements like Swaraj's reinforce the pernicious idea that it is still a social death to have been subjected to it.
The perpetrators can be men we are friends with, men we work with or under, men we are intimate with, men we do not know, men we know so well that we trust them with our childhoods.
Survivors survive, but they carry the burden of violence in memory that seems impassably perpetual to them.