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A Narrative Analysis of Hollaback! Posts: Political Processes and Rape Culture

Marshall, D. A. (2013)

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Abstract Street harassment is a global problem which ihollaback.org aims to challenge; the website allows victims of street harassment to post their experiences online to share with others. This study examines how posters use Hollaback! as a political platform in an attempt to achieve social change. It also observes which types of harassment incur different emotional responses and documents the silencing techniques used against women who publically challenge harassment, linking both to rape culture. The research was undertaken as a topical narrative analysis, focusing on 15 textual narratives detailing experiences of street harassment in Sheffield, posted on sheffield.ihollaback.org. Findings discovered that there were three common types of political process used in the narratives. Posters attempted to inspire social change by highlighting the negative effects on victims, challenging harassers and encouraging other women to speak out. The study also found that victims experience more negative emotions if they feel at risk of being raped and that those who speak out against harassment may be silenced with mockery, minimisation and escalation of the harassment including attempted rape.

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Introduction Kearl (2010) defines street harassment as unwanted attention in public places ranging from physically harmless leers, kissing noises and whistles to threatening behaviour such as vulgar gestures, sexually charged comments and stalking, to illegal behaviour including public masturbation, assault and rape. She states that around 80% of women around the world will experience some form of street harassment at least once in their lifetime. Statistics on street harassment tend to refer to women being harassed by men; although men can be victims of street harassment and women can be perpetrators, it is much more common to have female victims and male perpetrators. As Kearl (2010) explains, street harassment reinforces the gender imbalance which is prevalent in most of the modern world. She states that from a young age girls are taught that their chances of holding social power relies on being sexy and beautiful and that whether praising a woman for being sexually appealing, or punishing her because she is not, street harassment serves to reiterate that a woman’s value in Western society is determined by her level of attractiveness to men. Additionally Kearl (2010) maintains that we live in an established culture of rape in which women are unable to freely occupy public spaces alone without possessing an underlying fear of being violated, as this is a fear that few men have, street harassment by men against women is unique in the degradation and dangers it presents and so should be analysed separately from other forms. Hollaback! has published five papers exploring street harassment much of it quantitative, detailing facts and figures on types and pervasiveness of street harassment endorsing Kearl’s (2010) statistics. A grounded theory analysis found that victims who speak out against harassment feel more positive about the experience (Livingston et. al. [n.d.]), the researcher felt what was lacking from this theory was an investigation into possible negative consequences of speaking out. Livingston et. al. [n.d.] also found that their respondents’ emotional reactions to harassment were not affected by the level of assault but by being harassed at all, suggesting that a respondent could be equally upset by a low level harassment such as unwanted compliments and a high level, illegal harassment like rape. The

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researcher felt that this assertion was unlikely and aimed to challenge it in their own research. Dimond et. a.l. [n.d.] interviewed women who had posted harassment experiences on Hollaback and investigated how posting their experiences helps victims to dismiss the idea that harassment is a normal, acceptable part of life and enables them to challenge the behaviour as a collective voice. The researcher aimed to investigate this idea of Hollaback! being a platform for social change with regards to street harassment and wanted to analyse the experiences posted on Hollaback! as political processes. For the reasons outlined above, the researcher chose to carry out a topical narrative analysis focusing on textual narratives detailing experiences of street harassment in Sheffield, posted on sheffield.ihollaback.org. The researcher chose to focus the research on experiences in Sheffield for the simple reason that she lives in South Yorkshire. This research aims to answer the following questions: 

How do narrators use Hollaback! as a platform for achieving social change?

Is the type of harassment a factor in the victim’s emotional response?

What are the possible consequences of challenging street harassment?

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Method This study is a topical narrative analysis, focusing on textual narratives detailing experiences of street harassment in Sheffield, posted on sheffield.ihollaback.org. The ethical considerations for this study were minimal, as there were no participants, simply a collection of textual narratives detailing individuals’ experiences of street harassment. Permission to use the narratives was not needed as the individuals knowingly posted them on a globally accessible website whose intention is to raise awareness of street harassment. In addition, Hollaback! informs visitors to the site that research has been undertaken using the stories shared on its site and links to this research are made available (Hollaback! 2013). Therefore one can assume that posters are aware that their narratives may be used in social research and that no harm will come to the posters through analysing their narratives. Although posters on Hollaback typically provide their first names, the researcher made the decision to refer to particular cases as N#, with the N standing for narrative/narrator and the number referring to the order the narratives are listed in the appendix, as this makes it easier and quicker for the reader to find the narrative being referred to (appendix 1). The research was proposed to a panel of four peers who assessed it as ethically sound, (using the checklist in appendix 2). Enlisting an ethics panel ensured that the ethical review process was conducted independently of the study and allowed the study’s scientific value to be assessed by peers. For the structural analysis, the researcher used atlas ti, but so few features of the program were utilised that it would be entirely possible to follow the same process using a word processing programme or even pen and paper. The content analysis was undertaken using Microsoft Office Word and tables were created using Microsoft Office Excel. Anyone wishing to replicate this research would need internet access to visit ihollaback.org. The opportunity sample of 15 narratives was taken from a population of narratives posted on sheffield.ihollaback.org detailing experiences of street harassment in Sheffield. It is not possible to accurately record the age, race, sexual orientation or physical or mental ability of the posters as this information is not supplied. 5

The narratives chosen were the earliest 15 posts since Hollaback Sheffield began in August 2012. 14 of these were posted under feminine names, e.g. Amy, Siobhan, College girl, and one posting under gender neutral initials. With the vast majority (93.3%) of the narrators identifying as female and one undetermined, the researcher will be working with the assumption that the victims of harassment in these narratives are women and girls. Data collection was very simple; the researcher copied and pasted the narratives from the Hollaback! site onto a Microsoft Word document. The researcher had no contact with the narrators and the narratives were textual, so there was no need for transcription. The narratives were analysed using Narrative practice as defined by Marvasti (2004) from a cultural feminist epistemological perspective. The researcher initially began by coding the narratives using Labov’s (1972) 6 point structural analysis, to look for similarities in the order the stories are told (appendix 3), following this the narratives were investigated individually to examine for the implicit and explicit meanings and purposes behind the content (appendix 4), the researcher then went on to look for relationships between the multiple narratives and extracted individual quotes from each compiling tables to demonstrate similarities between the interpreted meanings and purposes of the narratives. As Gilbert (2008) explains, due to the nature of narrative analysis and the near impossibility to evaluate its validity, narrative researchers must reject the traditional, realist assumptions of validity and instead acknowledge that analysing the narratives under a different ideological framework or a different method of analysis may well give an alternative interpretation and that there is no one truth. Rather than try to prove their analysis as truthful, narrative researchers aim to make their process of analysis as transparent as possible in order to allow the reader to assess its trustworthiness. The researcher has made all stages of analysis available to view in the appendices and refers the reader to them to illustrate the analytical process.

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Results and Discussion This section will explain how, by using narrative practice to analyse them, Hollaback! narratives can be viewed as political processes designed to challenge the acceptability of street harassment. The researcher analysed the content and the structure of the narratives to investigate what meanings the narrators intended to put over to the reader. Findings showed that the narratives challenge the acceptability of street harassment in three ways, by showing why harassment is not harmless and highlighting the negative effects on victims, by challenging the harassers, both directly and indirectly and by encouraging other women to speak out if they experience harassment. Additional findings challenge Livingston et. al. [n.d.] in their view that the type of harassment doesn’t affect the victim’s emotional response and endorses Kearl’s (2010) assertion that an underlying fear of rape does. The narratives were grouped according to their tone into three categories, negative, neutral and positive. The negative narratives, so called because the narrator’s selfimage is negatively affected by the harassment, are N1, N2, N4, N5, N9, N14 and N15; they focus on informing the reader of the harmful consequences of street harassment. The use of adjectives is interesting here, the narrators describe themselves as vulnerable, anxious and scared and describe their harassers as aggressive, intimidating and entitled (see appendix 5 for examples of this). This use of adjectives alludes to a gendered power inequality and demonstrates how being harassed has a negative impact on one’s emotional state and how victims take on a weak, powerless identity. The neutral narratives, N3, N6, N8, N11 & N12, so called for their lack of emotional reference, aim to challenge the harassers, both directly, like N3 who demands harassers “Just leave me alone. I want the freedom to go about my day without some reference to the way I look, some pathetic come-on or intimidating comments”, and indirectly, by creating an undesirable persona for the harasser; using adjectives like, creepy, annoying and pathetic to describe them (see appendix 6 for examples of this).

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Positive narratives, including N7, N10 and N13, in which the narrator ends with a positive self-image, tend to base their story around their reaction to the harassment and how this made them feel empowered as N13 demonstrates, “I shouted, clearly and slowly: “Shouting at women in the street will not get you anywhere”. I was really proud because it wasn’t frantic and stressed [sic] hollaback like normal (“fuck you!”), and I wasn’t filled with adrenaline or really angry, I was just sort of informing them of something, like you would in a good telling-off! My best yet” (appendix 7). Labov’s (1972) framework for analysis of narrative structure allows the researcher to analyse the order in which the narrator tells their story and to investigate what meanings they were trying to convey by doing so. Labov’s structure consists of 6 different elements, but this discussion will only focus on the coda. A coda usually ends a narrative, summarising the overall meaning or moral of it. There seem to be three types of coda used in the collection of narratives, negative narrators focus on how the harassment made them feel; N9 finishes with, “I am anxious about travelling to work early in the morning or late at night again.” This leaves the reader in no doubt that the harassment has had a negative, lasting impact on her. The second type of coda seeks to challenge the behaviour of harassers, for example, N3 ends her narrative with: “…Keep your eyes and your thoughts and your sexism to yourselves”. While N12 makes her contempt for her harasser clear with the sarcastic dig, “What. A. Cutie.” Using the codas in this way makes it clear that the narrators believe harassment is unacceptable and that perpetrators are not respected by them. Thirdly, codas are used by narrators, like N13, who have Hollabacked! to celebrate their success, “I was just sort of informing them of something, like you would in a good telling-off! My best yet” or to convince others to Hollaback! as N10 exemplifies, “Pulling them up on it and asking them to justify their behaviour, by telling them how it makes you feel might just make them think twice. But you have to be feeling empowered that day.”

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The codas in these narratives can be interpreted as efforts to encourage social change and therefore the narratives can be viewed as political processes. (appendix 8) The three political processes are not mutually exclusive and many of the narratives attempt more than one, N10 for example covers all three, she tells her harassers that they have made her feel, “uncomfortable and dehumanised”, uses sarcasm to create an persona of stupidity for them, “In a moment of inspired eloquence, the other man enquired, ‘Are you a lesbian or something?’” and encourages other women to “make these idiots accountable” by speaking out against harassment. In analysing the narratives, the researcher found that different harassments incurred different emotional responses; this section aims to discuss what kinds of harassments cause emotional distress. N1 demonstrates how proximity and physical contact can be factors in how alarming the harassment is; depicting two separate harassments on the same night she states that the first harassment was not intimidating, as ‘they weren’t very close’ but the second harassers get close enough to hit her backside, this harassment left her feeling ‘angry and shaky’ N2 and N4 also express increased distress when faced with the threat of physical contact describing their fears that their harasser will catch up to them (appendix 9) The idea of what could have been is also quite common in the negative narratives, with four of the narrators believing themselves lucky to have escaped, either being rescued by public transport or being lucky that they were already running or cycling so could make a quick getaway (appendix 10). Mentioning luck suggests that the narrators feared that the situation could have escalated if they had not managed to get away. Kearl (2010) maintains that street harassment serves to remind women that there is a very real risk of rape when they make the decision to place themselves in a public space. These findings contradict the suggestion by Livingston et.al. [n.d.] that the type of harassment is not a factor in the victim’s emotional response, as it clearly shows that harassment is more upsetting when it causes the victim to feel that they may be raped. Although N10 emphatically encourages other women to speak out against harassment, she ends with, “But you have to be feeling empowered that day”. It���s interesting that she says this, as while her narrative is incredibly positive, she alludes 9

to a common feature of the negative narratives; the possible consequences of Holla’ing back., for speaking out, N12 is deemed frigid, N1 is mocked and N15’s reaction is minimised by her male band-mates, the most worrying example is when N2’s response to a request for sex causes her harasser to become aggressive and chase after her demanding she give him what he wants (appendix 11). Again, this analysis takes us back to the idea of a gendered power struggle and a fear of rape. The narratives aim to convey the silencing techniques men use against women when they try to challenge their harasser, including mockery, minimisation and attempted rape. This aspect of the analysis addresses a gap in previous research, as although the benefits of successfully challenging harassers have been discussed by Livingston et. al. [n.d.], the possible consequences of doing so have not. The limitations of this research include the small sample and population sizes, a larger study would be beneficial in confirming or challenging the findings. The fact that the age, race, sexual orientation or level of physical/mental abilities of the posters are not provided limit the ability to reproduce this study with the same social stratification, it also prevents the researcher from examining the idea of multi-layered harassment. Further studies could include contacting the narrators and interviewing them; this would allow incorporating multi-layered harassment into the analysis and would also create an opportunity to validate the findings with the original sources.

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References

Dimond, J.P., Dye, M., LaRose, D. & Bruckman, A.S. [n.d.] Hollaback!: The Role of Collective Storytelling Online in a Social Movement Organization. Atlanta: Georgia Institute of Technology. [Online] Available from: http://jilldimond.com/wpcontent/uploads/2010/10/storytelling-cscwRev2-final.pdf [Accessed 8th May 2013]

Hollaback! (2013) Research. New York: Hollaback! [Online] Available from: http://www.ihollaback.org/resources/research/ [Accessed 1st May 2013]

Kearl, H. (2010) Stop Street Harassment: Making Public Spaces Safe and Welcoming for Women. California: Praeger.

Livingston, B.A., Wagner, K.C., Diaz, S.T. & Lu, A. The Experience of Being Targets of Street Harassment in NYC: Preliminary Findings from a Qualitative Study of a Sample of 223 Voices who Hallaback! New York: Cornell University [Online] Available from: http://www.ihollaback.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/correcteddataILR_Report_TARGET_1B_10232012-1.pdf [Accessed 27th April 2013].

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Appendix One Comprehensive List of Narratives N1: One Saturday evening at around 11 o’clock, myself and three friends were cycling across the centre of Sheffield on our way to a night out. While we were cycling up the Moor it was mostly empty apart from people going between pubs and clubs. We cycled past some guys who made some ‘weeeeyyyyy’ drunk noises and pretended to step in front of us but they weren’t very close so we weren’t intimidated. The next group of men were drunker and there were more of them, about 8, and they seemed intent on harassing us, shouting loudly at us and stepping in front of us with their arms out stretched. This was pretty intimidating and we all had to swerve to avoid them and this split us up so we were no longer 4 bikes together side by side, but now separated by quite a distance in single file. We had nearly made our way through the pack when the one towards the end took two strides towards me with his arm extended and brought it down fast to hit me really hard on my bum. Not only did it HURT because he hit me really hard, I felt so dehumanised. I shouted something like ‘don’t fucking touch me!’ but this just led to them cheering and making more drunk noises. I knew that saying anything more or going back would have led to a confrontation…I felt pretty helpless. You would have thought that it being four of us, and going fairly quickly on bikes, would have put street harassers off but it clearly didn’t make a difference. Thanks to them the first couple of hours of my night were ruined because I felt shaky and angry. N2: This is the most recent and one of the scarier harassments I have been on the receiving end of on the streets of Sheffield: I was cycling home from the library on my own and it must have been quite late, probably about midnight. I was coming up to the corner of my street in Sharrow when I saw a man walking on the street next to me, I had a strong feeling that he was about to say something, and sure enough “OI. YOU. FANCY A F*CK?” was yelled as I became level with him. I sped up and rounded the corner, putting my finger up at him over my shoulder at the same time (maybe not the best response to that comment but I was too angry and shocked to think of anything good to say). This doesn’t seem to have been a great idea as on seeing my reaction he began walking faster after me and shouting at the top of his voice: “I SEE A F*CK” and “GIVE ME A F*CK”. He was shouting this so aggressively and with such anger that I felt really lucky that I was on my bike and could cycle fast up the hill away from him, though I was still feeling terrified that he could have been running behind me and might find out where I lived. I ran in and locked the door feeling vulnerable, insulted, scared and angry. What left me feeling particularly shaken and mystified was the rage that this man clearly felt as well as violence in his voice as well as the gross sense of entitlement he seemed to feel when demanding a “f*ck” (something is clearly really wrong here). THIS IS NOT HOW WE SHOULD FEEL AS WOMEN ON OUR STREETS!

N3: Right outside my house seems to be some kind of sexist moron hotspot. As I was cycling down with two friends, we got 3 incidents in a row: some perverts in a car, and two separate groups of stupid young boys who all thought it appropriate to yell at us. I’m not sure exactly what was said, but it involved wolf whistling, the word “cunts” and something about “laydeeez”. As I crossed the road outside my front door a car full of men wound down their windows to tell me what they thought about my legs. I DON’T WANT TO KNOW. Going for a run with a friend, we were yelled at on three 12

separate occasions. Just leave me alone. I want the freedom to go about my day without some reference to the way I look, some pathetic come-on or intimidating comments. Keep your eyes and your thoughts and your sexism to yourselves.

N4: Funny how something as regular, banal but still otherwise energising as a run can turn into something altogether more unsettling. When I lived in the area, I was training for the half marathon. I eventually got used to finding running a relaxing and rejuvenating experience, if often a challenge to feel motivated. This is due to not just a previous dislike of any exercise but also anxiety issues. One day I was running across from the Old Grindstone. Outside the pub were about five men in their late forties drinking. It was about 11.30am. One of them clocked me and tried to make eye contact but I kept going. On my way back about twenty five minutes later, they were still outside, still drinking. The same man from before spotted me again from afar, then started to cross the road in order to catch up to me. I had my earphones in so I couldn’t hear exactly what he was saying but he was shouting at me and getting faster in trying to approach me. I’m just grateful that I was already running. I didn’t look back but when I got to my door he wasn’t following me. It took me a fair bit longer to get the guts to go running the next morning, definitely. Honestly, what did that bloke think that spotting me, waiting for me, shouting at me and approaching me would achieve? That I would stop? That I would go in for a drink? That we would have sex? Just because I am using my body for what I want it to do – i.e. go for a run – and just because I am wearing shorts – because they’re practical for running – and just because I happen to be running past you – actually I think you’ll find you’re in the way on my route, fella – does not mean I am parading myself for you. Jog on. N5: This specific bus stop, opposite the bottom of Mount Pleasant Park/Adventure Playground on Abbeydale Road, I no longer use because of the amount of harassment I have experienced there. The most intimidating instance was when I was there late at night, and a man walked past on the opposite side of the road, and shouted to me ‘you suck dick?’ ‘you like to suck cock don’t you’…I sat at the bus stop, not looking his way and didn’t make any response. He walked on slowly, looking at me and gesturing with his hands. The bus still hadn’t come, and five minutes later he walked back, and started shouting again – ‘suck my cock bitch’ ‘you look like you suck a lot of cock’ etc etc. I felt really intimidated and angry at being cornered – no one around and with unpopulated/bushy areas on both sides. I didn’t say anything and just hoped he would go away – I was lucky, the bus came soon and as I got on, I shouted at him to ‘get fucked’….but if the bus hadn’t come then I don’t know what I would have done, and it left me feeling very powerless.

N6: A creepy guy sitting in his parked car hissed ‘sexy’ at me while i was walking past. annoying and pathetic. i turned round and said ‘don’t talk to me like that’. 13

N7: After falling during wakeboarding, in a wetsuit and lifejacket, at like 3pm, whilst walking back around the lake, one teenage boy (with his mate) decided to say to me as I was walking past him; ‘Do you want to suck my dick?’!! I looked at him with disgust and said ‘NO’ and he asked why not. I shouted back ’cause you’re a dickhead!’. Had enough of silently putting up with street harrassment. I hollaback now

N8: Some divs inarticulately shouting drove past in a car, and threw an egg out the window in our direction. What a waste.

N9: It was 7am on a Sunday and I was on my way to work. I had just got off the number 52 bus where a number of drunk guys had sat next to me on the top deck and tried to talk to me even though I was pointedly ignoring them. I found them very intimidating especially as I was the only person on the top deck of the bus apart from them. I got off the bus at my stop and walked down the Attercliffe Road to work. I noticed a purple micra slow down and the driver wound the window down. He said ‘hey gorgeous’. I tried to ignore him and carried on walking up the road at which point I heard him reverse back up the road. He then asked me to get in the car. I was scared as there was no one else around. I thought he had gone away so I rang my mum but then further along the road he turned out of a side street and said ‘hey you there girl, get in the car’. I was really distressed. My work rang the police. They interviewed me and said they would look in to CCTV to see if they could find him. I am anxious about travelling to work early in the morning or late at night again. N10: On a hot summer’s day, I decided to eat my lunch sitting on the grass in the park. In my way back to work, two men started braying in ny direction a variety of objectifying comments. Usually in such situations, I satisfy myself with a retort of choice four letter words, but I was feeling empowered that day, so I walked straight up to then and said, very matter of factly, “Number 1, it’s not ok to talk to people like that – you’ve made me feel uncomfortable and dehumanised. Number 2 – this kind of behaviour is sexist. You’re suggesting that my role as a woman is to be an object for you to ogle. Number 3 – there are children in this park. Giving them the impression that this is the way for boys to interact with girls is regressive. Ok? So don’t do it again.” After looking baffled for a few seconds, one said “Well it was a compliment- I’d be happy if someone complimented me on the street.” I explained that I hadn’t asked for his opinion on my appearance, and I don’t feel that my appearance is what defines me as a person, and I asked him how he would feel if everyone who walked past him gave him marks out of ten for his looks.” In a moment of inspired eloquence, the other man enquired, “Are you a lesbian or something?” I replied that it was none of his business whether I was or I wasn’t, that it’s horrible for anyone to be shouted at like this. I did add (in the hope of putting them off doing it again) “But as you’re so interested, I’m not a lesbian, but I certainly 14

would never be interested in a man that behaved in a way that was so disrespectful of women. So if this habit of harassing women in parks is your misguided attempt at a courtship ritual, I’d say you were pretty fucked.” And walked off. I got a couple of lacklustre “Lesbian!”s thrown after me, but they sounded broken. I hope they’ll think twice next time. I think we should make these idiots accountable. For the most part, they aren’t thinking about what they’re doing-they’re just being louts. Pulling them up on it and asking them to justify their behaviour, by telling them how it makes you feel might just make them think twice. But you have to be feeling empowered that day.

N11: I was running to my car in the rain when a couple of men said loudly ‘ah nice legs’. I turned around and said ‘what the fuck is wrong with you?” they carried on walking away but stared at me over their shoulders. I shouted loudly in my car ‘fuck you’ and then starred back at them and shouted ‘fucking pricks’. Ironically, I was on my way to Radio Sheffield to do an interview about the sexist Carnage ‘pimps and hoes’ event and the message it sends out about trivialising violence against women!

N12: So I was just casually strolling to lectures when a club rep handing out flyers felt it was appropiate start making sex noises at me whilst licking his lips to which I just as eloquently responded with a flick of the middle finger and a stoney glare. The next day I walked past him again (lucky me, you can already tell he’s a hell of a charmer!) and he winked at me, then recognised me when I asked why the hell he was being so obnoxious, to which he replied he was like this to everyone and laughed. Absolutely hilarious I know. As I made my escape he said loudly to his friend that he ‘won’t bother with her coz she’s frigid’ What. A. Cutie.

N13: I was walking through past Waitrose at about 9pm txting a friend when I heard two guys’ laughter echo through the carpark, one shouted ‘hey pretty lady!’ at me, and when I didn’t respond the other said ‘too humble even to shout back!’ to which I shouted, clearly and slowly : “Shouting at women in the street will not get you anywhere”. I was really proud because it wasn’t frantic and stessed hollaback like normal (“fuck you!”), and I wasn’t filled with adrenaline or really angry, I was just sort of informing them of something, like you would in a good telling-off! My best yet N14: This happened more than four years ago whilst I was in college, and whilst I know now I would have behaved in a different way had the same situation occurred, I still remember how scared it made me feel at the time. I was walking in the city center during the afternoon doing some shopping and a middle aged man I notice began to follow me. He was subtle at first but then it became really apparent as I tried to lose him several times but he kept following me into every shop. I was really scared and even though 15

there were lots of people around me I felt too embarrassed/ashamed to say anything to anyone. I walked to the bus stop wanting to quickly get home and he still was following me and began to harass and intimidate me. At that point I told him to leave me alone and just was so thankful the bus came and he didn’t get on. I have no idea what I would have done if he did. It made me feel really scared to even walk in the city center by myself during the day. Unfortunately like many women over the years I have had to put up with street harassment on a weekly basis and the frequency of this has meant I’ve learnt with how to deal with it a lot better than when I was in college. Now when ever I get harassed or made to feel uncomfortable I enjoy making *them* feel really embarrassed and ashamed for daring to think they can get away with treating me like an object.

N15: So I went with my band to the attic studios, its a practise room in the Lion works in Shalesmoore. I was in an old band called The Inside Job, and I had forgotten that we had put a poster up advertising oursevles for gigs and stuff. Written underneath my picture was “I`d like to get inside her job”, which at first seemed funny, but then got me really angry. What upset me even more was that the guys in my band didnt realise why I would find that offensive! “Its just a joke” and call that crap…………. Im bloody sick of sexist attitudes towards women in the sheffield music scene, especially when there are so many talented female artists. They always get reduced to the way they look, and its bloody annoying!

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Appendix Two Ethics Panel Checklists Avoiding Risks While Ensuring the Safety of Researchers Has/Have the name of the researcher(s) been supplied? Has a proposed title of the research been supplied? Has a timeframe of how long it will take to complete the research been given? Has/have the researcher(s) supplied their contact details? Has/Have the researcher(s) been appropriately trained so that they are able to conduct research safely? Has the safety of the researcher(s) been established (they are not conducting research in an area that places their health or safety at risk? Are there any conflicting interests? Is the research process consistent with addressing ethics?

Avoiding Risks While Ensuring the Safety of Participants and Corporations Has the research been designed so that it does not cause any psychological or physical harm? Has the research been designed to make sure that it will not result in any adverse effects? Has the research been designed so that it does not involve any invasive or harmful procedures? Are the participants’ moral rights being protected? Will confidentiality be kept at all times? Are all participants going to be treated fairly? Has/Have the researcher(s) ensured that participants are not vulnerable people or that if they are they are protected and appropriate consent is given? Are unfair, prejudiced or discriminatory practices being avoided during the participant selection and research processes? Are there any access protocols that need to be addressed? If English is not the first language of any participants, are there arrangements in place to ensure informed consent can be collected? There is no use of deception OR there is an appropriate debrief explaining the deception

Data Protection If the research involves using audio, film, or video recording, have measures been taken to ensure that only the researcher(s) has/have access to them? Has personal consent been signed and collected prior to the investigation? Has confidentially been assured?

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Have participants been informed of their right to withdraw at any time, or within a certain timeframe? Have all participants been made aware of their right to request for their information to be destroyed or removed from the database? Have participants been informed of how long the data will be stored for and how the data will be used? Are participants aware that the data collected will not be used for any purpose other than the study which they have been informed of and consented to? Has parental consent been collected for participants under the age of 18? Prior to participation, were all participants warned about any offensive or disturbing material?

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Appendix Three Structural Analysis Using Labov’s Structural Analysis Framework

Using Atlas Ti to organise into Labov’s six elements:

Table to show codas used: N# N3

N3

N1 N2

N4 N7 N8 N9

Quote I DON’T WANT TO KNOW. Just leave me alone. I want the freedom to go about my day without some reference to the way I look, some pathetic come-on or intimidating comments. Keep your eyes and your thoughts and your sexism to yourselves. Thanks to them the first couple of hours of my night were ruined because I felt shaky and angry. THIS IS NOT HOW WE SHOULD FEEL AS WOMEN ON OUR STREETS! Just because I am using my body for what I want it to do – i.e. go for a run – and just because I am wearing shorts – because they’re practical for running – and just because I happen to be running past you – actually I think you’ll find you’re in the way on my route, fella – does not mean I am parading myself for you. Jog on. Had enough of silently putting up with street harrassment. I hollaback now What a waste I am anxious about travelling to work early in the morning or late at night again.

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N11 N12 N13

N10

N14

N15

Ironically, I was on my way to Radio Sheffield to do an interview about the sexist Carnage ‘pimps and hoes’ event and the message it sends out about trivialising violence against women! What. A. Cutie. I was just sort of informing them of something, like you would in a good telling-off! My best yet I think we should make these idiots accountable. For the most part, they aren’t thinking about what they’re doing-they’re just being louts. Pulling them up on it and asking them to justify their behaviour, by telling them how it makes you feel might just make them think twice. But you have to be feeling empowered that day. Unfortunately like many women over the years I have had to put up with street harassment on a weekly basis and the frequency of this has meant I’ve learnt with how to deal with it a lot better than when I was in college. Now when ever I get harassed or made to feel uncomfortable I enjoy making *them* feel really embarrassed and ashamed for daring to think they can get away with treating me like an object. Im bloody sick of sexist attitudes towards women in the sheffield music scene, especially when there are so many talented female artists. They always get reduced to the way they look, and its bloody annoying!

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Appendix Four An Example of the Individual Content Analysis N10: On a hot summer’s day, I decided to eat my lunch sitting on the grass in the park. In my way back to work, two men started braying in ny direction a variety of objectifying comments. Usually in such situations, I satisfy myself with a retort of choice four letter words, but I was feeling empowered that day, so I walked straight up to then and said, very matter of factly, “Number 1, it’s not ok to talk to people like that – you’ve made me feel uncomfortable and dehumanised. Number 2 – this kind of behaviour is sexist. You’re suggesting that my role as a woman is to be an object for you to ogle. Number 3 – there are children in this park. Giving them the impression that this is the way for boys to interact with girls is regressive. Ok? So don’t do it again.” After looking baffled for a few seconds, one said “Well it was a compliment- I’d be happy if someone complimented me on the street.” I explained that I hadn’t asked for his opinion on my appearance, and I don’t feel that my appearance is what defines me as a person, and I asked him how he would feel if everyone who walked past him gave him marks out of ten for his looks.” In a moment of inspired eloquence, the other man enquired, “Are you a lesbian or something?” I replied that it was none of his business whether I was or I wasn’t, that it’s horrible for anyone to be shouted at like this. I did add (in the hope of putting them off doing it again) “But as you’re so interested, I’m not a lesbian, but I certainly would never be interested in a man that behaved in a way that was so disrespectful of women. So if this habit of harassing women in parks is your misguided attempt at a courtship ritual, I’d say you were pretty fucked.” And walked off. I got a couple of lacklustre “Lesbian!”s thrown after me, but they sounded broken. I hope they’ll think twice next time. I think we should make these idiots accountable. For the most part, they aren’t thinking about what they’re doing-they’re just being louts. Pulling them up on it and asking them to justify their behaviour, by telling them how it makes you feel might just make them think twice. But you have to be feeling empowered that day.

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Appendix Five Table to show words used to describe the narrator and the harasser in cases with negative outcomes Narrative N1 N2 N4 N5 N9 N14 N15

Words used to describe narrator helpless, hurt, dehumanised, shaky, angry Lucky (that she was on a bike), terrified, vulnerable, insulted, scared, angry, shaken, mystified grateful (that she was already running), anxious Intimidated, angry, lucky (that the bus came), powerless. Scared, distressed, anxious. scared, embarrassed, ashamed, thankful (that the bus came) Angry, upset, offended, sick.

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Words used to describe harasser Intimidating Aggressive, angry, raged, violent, entitled

Intimidating Intimidating

Appendix Six Examples of direct and indirect challenges to harassers in neutral narratives Narrative

Direct challenge

Indirect challenge

N3

I DON’T WANT TO KNOW

Right outside my house seems to be some kind of sexist moron hotspot

N3

Just leave me alone. I want the freedom to go about my day without some reference to the way I look, some pathetic come-on or intimidating comments. Keep your eyes and your thoughts and your sexism to yourselves.

some perverts in a car, and two separate groups of stupid young boys who all thought it appropriate to yell at us. I’m not sure exactly what was said, but it involved wolf whistling, the word “cunts” and something about “laydeeez”.

N6

A creepy guy sitting in his parked car hissed ‘sexy’ at me while i was walking past. annoying and pathetic.

N8

Some divs inarticulately shouting drove past in a car, and threw an egg out the window in our direction. What a waste.

N11

Ironically, I was on my way to Radio Sheffield to do an interview about the sexist Carnage ‘pimps and hoes’ event and the message it sends out about trivialising violence against women! The next day I walked past him again (lucky me, you can already tell he’s a hell of a charmer!) when I asked why the hell he was being so obnoxious, to which he replied he was like this to everyone and laughed. Absolutely hilarious I know. As I made my escape he said loudly to his friend that he ‘won’t bother with her coz she’s frigid’ What. A. Cutie.

N12

N12

N12

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Appendix Seven Responses to harassment and feelings about the responses in positive narratives Narrative

Respons to harassment

Positive feeling about response

N7

, one teenage boy (with his mate) decided to say to me as I was walking past him; ‘Do you want to suck my dick?’!! I looked at him with disgust and said ‘NO’ and he asked why not. I shouted back ’cause you’re a dickhead!’.

Had enough of silently putting up with street harrassment. I hollaback now

N10

so I walked straight up to then and said, very matter of factly, “Number 1, it’s not ok to talk to people like that – you’ve made me feel uncomfortable and dehumanised. Number 2 – this kind of behaviour is sexist. You’re suggesting that my role as a woman is to be an object for you to ogle. Number 3 – there are children in this park. Giving them the impression that this is the way for boys to interact with girls is regressive. Ok? So don’t do it again.”

I got a couple of lacklustre “Lesbian!”s thrown after me, but they sounded broken. I hope they’ll think twice next time.

I explained that I hadn’t asked for his opinion on my appearance, and I don’t feel that my appearance is what defines me as a person, and I asked him how he would feel if everyone who walked past him gave him marks out of ten for his looks.

I think we should make these idiots accountable. For the most part, they aren’t thinking about what they’re doing-they’re just being louts. Pulling them up on it and asking them to justify their behaviour, by telling them how it makes you feel might just make them think twice.

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I replied that it was none of his business whether I was or I wasn’t, that it’s horrible for anyone to be shouted at like this. I did add (in the hope of putting them off doing it again) “But as you’re so interested, I’m not a lesbian, but I certainly would never be interested in a man that behaved in a way that was so disrespectful of women. So if this habit of harassing women in parks is your misguided attempt at a courtship ritual, I’d say you were pretty fucked.” And walked off.

N13

I shouted, clearly and slowly : “Shouting at women in the street will not get you anywhere”.

I was really proud because it wasn’t frantic and stessed hollaback like normal (“fuck you!”), and I wasn’t filled with adrenaline or really angry, I was just sort of informing them of something, like you would in a good telling-off! My best yet

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Appendix Eight Codas used in the narratives N# N3

N3

N1 N2

N4 N7 N8 N9

N11 N12 N13

N10

N14

N15

Quote I DON’T WANT TO KNOW. Just leave me alone. I want the freedom to go about my day without some reference to the way I look, some pathetic come-on or intimidating comments. Keep your eyes and your thoughts and your sexism to yourselves. Thanks to them the first couple of hours of my night were ruined because I felt shaky and angry. THIS IS NOT HOW WE SHOULD FEEL AS WOMEN ON OUR STREETS! Just because I am using my body for what I want it to do – i.e. go for a run – and just because I am wearing shorts – because they’re practical for running – and just because I happen to be running past you – actually I think you’ll find you’re in the way on my route, fella – does not mean I am parading myself for you. Jog on. Had enough of silently putting up with street harrassment. I hollaback now What a waste I am anxious about travelling to work early in the morning or late at night again. Ironically, I was on my way to Radio Sheffield to do an interview about the sexist Carnage ‘pimps and hoes’ event and the message it sends out about trivialising violence against women! What. A. Cutie. I was just sort of informing them of something, like you would in a good telling-off! My best yet I think we should make these idiots accountable. For the most part, they aren’t thinking about what they’re doing-they’re just being louts. Pulling them up on it and asking them to justify their behaviour, by telling them how it makes you feel might just make them think twice. But you have to be feeling empowered that day. Unfortunately like many women over the years I have had to put up with street harassment on a weekly basis and the frequency of this has meant I’ve learnt with how to deal with it a lot better than when I was in college. Now when ever I get harassed or made to feel uncomfortable I enjoy making *them* feel really embarrassed and ashamed for daring to think they can get away with treating me like an object. Im bloody sick of sexist attitudes towards women in the sheffield music scene, especially when there are so many talented female artists. They always get reduced to the way they look, and its bloody annoying! 26

Appendix Nine References to proximity of harasser Narrative

Quote

N1

they weren’t very close so we weren’t intimidated

N1

and they seemed intent on harassing us, shouting loudly at us and stepping in front of us with their arms out stretched... We had nearly made our way through the pack when the one towards the end took two strides towards me with his arm extended and brought it down fast to hit me really hard on my bum.

N2

he began walking faster after me and shouting at the top of his voice… I was still feeling terrified that he could have been running behind me and might find out where I lived

N4

The same man from before spotted me again from afar, then started to cross the road in order to catch up to me. I had my earphones in so I couldn’t hear exactly what he was saying but he was shouting at me and getting faster in trying to approach me.

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Appendix Ten Table to show quotes relating to feelings of luck or gratitude that the situation didn’t escalate

Narrative N2 N4 N5

N14

Quote He was shouting this so aggressively and with such anger that I felt really lucky that I was on my bike and could cycle fast up the hill away from him I’m just grateful that I was already running I was lucky, the bus came soon and as I got on, I shouted at him to ‘get fucked’….but if the bus hadn’t come then I don’t know what I would have done At that point I told him to leave me alone and just was so thankful the bus came and he didn’t get on

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Appendix Eleven Table to show quotes exemplifying consequences of or reactions to speaking out against harassment Narrative

Quote

N1

I shouted something like ‘don’t fucking touch me!’ but this just led to them cheering and making more drunk noises. I knew that saying anything more or going back would have led to a confrontation…I felt pretty helpless.

N2

N12

N15

I sped up and rounded the corner, putting my finger up at him over my shoulder at the same time… This doesn’t seem to have been a great idea as on seeing my reaction he began walking faster after me and shouting at the top of his voice: “I SEE A F*CK” and “GIVE ME A F*CK”. I asked why the hell he was being so obnoxious, to which he replied he was like this to everyone and laughed. Absolutely hilarious I know. As I made my escape he said loudly to his friend that he ‘won’t bother with her coz she’s frigid’ What upset me even more was that the guys in my band didnt realise why I would find that offensive! “Its just a joke” and call that crap………….

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A Narrative Analysis of Hollaback! Posts : Political processes and rape culture