Top feminist academics that have respectable diverse doctorates from medieval art, 6th century English to Women’s Studies gathered at the University of Toronto meeting center to discuss if human flatulence could be sexist.
Ashleigh Ingle a proud feminist and an anarchist argued that because of patriarchal gender norms women were not allowed to release gas in public because of men’s unreal expectations of women to be clean and feminine. Furthermore she articulated that if a woman was to fart in the presence of a man and the man responded by farting louder than the woman, than that would be rape.
“By farting louder the man is using passive aggressive violence to position himself as dominant, this intimidates the woman to subconsciously not release as much flatulence and thus the woman fearing for her safety doesn’t fart as loud as a sign of submissiveness, this in turn contributes to rape culture and women being oppressed.”
The discussion boiled down to women’s bodies once again being controlled by society and women being told what to do.
Local activist Steph Guthrie a feminist advocate and community organizer who specialises in social media and interactive events proposed an online campaign to tackle this misogyny that “keeps women down and trapped in their own bodies. I just find it horrific that the patriarchy has been controlling women’s flatulence this whole time and we have just realised this now, it is time for feminist worldwide to re-educate women on how they are being discriminated against.
Guthrie’s twitter hash tag #FartRape has started to trend as women are taking control of their own bodies by naming and shaming men guilty of fart rape. Guthrie hopes the guilty men will be identified and then their workplace will be called up and their employer will be notified the type of person they are harboring in the workplace.
But Ingle argues that it simply isn’t enough, “Don’t tell women to fart louder tell men not to fart so loud” This is clear victim blaming and government should pass laws to make male farts above a certain decibel illegal to make human flatulence equal and not discriminate against women.
Science advocates have argued that because of sexual dimorphism men are larger, need a higher protein intake and thus can relieve more flatulence, but the speakers at the conference were adamant that it was a socially constructed gender norm that oppressed women to the point that they physically do not release equal amounts of gas as men.