The University of Leicester Feminist Society recently launched the campaign to boycott The Sun from campus until Page 3 is removed from the paper. Our university strives to be both a safe and positive space that inspires an equal working environment. However, Page 3 encourages the casual sexual objectification of women – devaluing them into subjects that exist only for visual satisfaction as opposed to equal contributors to society.
We want to celebrate women’s bodies – not perpetuate the disempowering, sexist and archaic representation The Sun exploits.
It was this time last year that The Sun placed an image of Reeva Steenkamp half naked on the FRONT cover with the caption ‘3 shots. Screams. Silence. 3 more shots.’ Reeva Steenkamp is not named, only referred to as Pistorius’ ‘Lover’ and ‘girlfriend of…’ and most disturbingly, this image fetishizes and sexualizes domestic violence.
As an institute of higher education, this is not something we should be supporting.
Reeva Steenkamp, murdered by her partner Oscar Pistorius in 2013
Although there was a campaign to remove/apologise for the release of this disgraceful front cover – these examples are not held in isolation and continue to eroticize and tantalize violence against women. This is just one other recent example from a report in January:
I used to work in an all-male environment where the men in the shop would casually flick through The Sun and other ‘Lads Mags’ laughing and mocking the women pictured. This isn’t empowering – it is degrading, upsetting and misogynistic. As a sixteen year old, I felt powerless to do anything about it. But now I want to be able to do something to stop this from happening to other women (and indeed children) in an environment that intends to promote equality.
With a wealth of support coming from many other societies, students and staff, we have managed to get over 220 signatures so far. While this is fantastic, we need to continue to raise the profile of this campaign by getting as much support as possible.
Over 22 Universities so far have removed the paper – and we want to be next on the list.
Please join our campaign to make our university a more equal and safe place here
Thank you for your support.