Reason: The Feminist War On Sex Work Bleeds Into Video Games – #gamergate

Dec 7, 2014
Anti-Porn
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Why sex workers have criticized the way feminist Anita Sarkeesian talks about women’s agency

From  at Reason —

In her series of controversial videos critiquing sexism in video games, Anita Sarkeesian often focuses on the way games treat sex workers. She points to games like Hitman: Absolution, in which characters can dump the dead body of a stripper over a railing as a way to distract police; or Saints Row, in which characters are encouraged to steal prostitutes from one pimp and deliver them to another; or Grand Theft Auto, where having sex with a sex worker increases health much like quaffing an energy drink. Sarkeesian concludes that sex workers in many video games are viewed as commodities and objects, rather than as people—and that they are often targeted for violence. In Red Dead Redemption, for example, the player is rewarded with an achievement for kidnapping a sex worker and murdering her.

Reason: The Feminist War On Sex Work Bleeds Into Video Games - #gamergate

“[Sarkeesian] sees men as creatures able to make sexual choices,” Maggie McNeil says, “but she sees women as creatures who can only have sex for traditional reasons—love, or romance or whatever. But if women are [having sex] for tactical reasons, then she sees this as somehow suspect—that a man must be doing that. Hence the [term] prostituted. Someone has done this to her.”

Violence against sex workers is a serious problem, both nationally and internationally, and Sarkeesian makes the case that the games she discusses treat that violence as fun, enjoyable, or even laudable. But Sarkeesian’s videos have not garnered much praise from those most directly affected by these tropes. On the contrary, many sex workers have argued that Sarkeesian’s videos contribute to the objectification and stigma that she claims she is trying to reduce.

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[…] “[Sarkeesian] sees men as creatures able to make sexual choices,” Maggie McNeil says, “but she sees women as creatures who can only have sex for traditional reasons—love, or romance or whatever. But if women are [having sex] for tactical reasons, then she sees this as somehow …read more       […]

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[…] In her series of controversial videos critiquing sexism in video games, Anita Sarkeesian often focuses on the way games treat sex workers. She points to games like Hitman: Absolution, in which characters can dump the dead body of a stripper over a railing as a way to distract police; or Saints Row, in which characters are encouraged to steal prostitutes from one pimp and deliver them to another; or Grand Theft Auto, where having sex with a sex worker …read more […]

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