Lifelike Rape Culture in Utopia

One of the strongest images of dehumanization that is seen in Utopia is the prevalence and normalization of women as objects and the perpetuation of rape culture. This is seem from the very beginning in the way the Alaa speaks about women; how he just keeps them around for sex, gets them pregnant, and then moves on to the next girl while the first is recovering from her abortion. Alaa does not make any emotional connections to the women he is sleeping with, they just serve as a body to comfort him in the place of a real connection. He uses women and sex as a coping tool for dealing with the boredom of his life, with no concern with the person hood of these women or how this may affect them. When Gaber decides to finally lash out at Utopia, he decides to do so in a similar way, by using a woman as an object, by treating women as a tool with no person hood; by raping Germinal.

Image result for women as objects

Women are discarded when they are no longer of use. Source: Lasana Liburd

“She wasn’t a lifeless corpse, since I didn’t want to have sex with a dead body…” (Towfik, 115)

Ahmed Khaled Towfik does a good job at capturing the perspective of a rapist in this seen. Gaber does not care about Germinal as a person, at this point he only views her as the body he plans on raping. He only considers what kind of sex he wants to get from her, with no consideration of her wants in the situation. Though, fortunately, it turns out that Gaber does not actually end up being a rapist, this attitude seen in him is not something too far off from the reality of a rapist. For example, after being sentenced to only six months in jail after the rape of an unconscious girl behind a dumpster, Brock Turner decided to try to appeal his already lenient sentence. Among the letters to the court was one from Turner’s father, who boiled the whole experience down to “twenty minutes of action.”  

It is incredibly dehumanizing and objectifying to only see women as the quality of sex they provided while being raped. Whether that is only viewing her as 20 minutes of action, or as a incapacitated, but not too lifeless body.  

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