What we can see in this study showing that more and more young women feel vulnerable, fearful and harassed is the tragic victory of Victim Feminism, of a feminism whose main aim seems to be to convince young women that life is hard, abuse is rife, words can harm, and being a woman is a really dangerous occupation.
Earlier this month, the world witnessed a group of hockey players from Stirling University chanting sexist songs about miscarriages on camera, while performing Nazi salutes. Other students watched in horror; too afraid to do anything to stop the perpetrators. This is what banter is. It is grossly misogynistic. It is racist. It is hurtful. It is ignorant. It is the vindication that justifies all of these things - all in the name of a harmless joke. And it needs to stop.
While Francis' analysis is correct, the problem is that capitalism is not the only system that acts in this way: religions - Catholicism included - also create problematic demands on us. Indeed, one could argue that the idea of God could be seen as an infinite demand: if God has said, for example, that being gay is sinful or having women leaders is wrong, who are we to even begin to argue?
It seems that many UK students are suffering a sense of humour failure. Perhaps its been struck off our list of essentials and become an unjustifiable luxury since course prices have tripled. We need bread and milk; irony can wait. Apparently even cheap gags are a stretch these days, as it seems recently we have needed a lot of explanation over what counts as 'a joke'...
For months, the debate over universities' decisions to ban Blurred Lines has remained heated. The obvious reason for the ban is that the song is rife with sexism and casual support of rape culture. There is no doubt that the song is sexist. Robin Thicke himself does not deny that it demeans women...
To some of my fellow 'lads' of Britain I make this simple call to you - don't pretend that making sexist chants on a bus can be passed off as a "bit of a laugh"... if you want to strut about like peacocks showing off who's got the largest set of feathers then don't do it in public for the world to see your idiotic behaviour.
The Black Cygnets group from St Hugh's College, despite being officially banned from college premises, sent out invitations for their annual event earlier this week. Male invitees were told to dress in "hunting attire", while the female attendees, the many of whom are freshers, were instructed to come as "foxes".