Rape Culture Through The Perspective Of Carry That Weight

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Rape Culture Through the Perspective of Carry That Weight

Rape culture remains a taboo topic that needs to be further recognized in order to understand it and prevent it from continuing for the sake of future generations. Unfortunately, current college students are victims of university standards that largely fail to protect them. Oftentimes, such as in the case of Emma Sulkowicz, a senior at Columbia University, cases of sexual assault are quieted in order to preserve the image of the institution, at the cost of its students’ well being. Yet sexual assault is a common occurrence, particularly among young people today. Emma Sulkowicz was raped during her sophomore year at Columbia and the dreadful experience is what inspired her visual arts senior thesis Carry That Weight (2014), in which she lugs a 50 pound mattress around campus with her. The project has played a pivotal role in bringing attention to rape culture, particularly on college campuses, during a time of struggle between victims and authorities.

Carry That Weight showcases the burden of a young women carrying a mattress on her own as a metaphor for the weight she bears as a victim of rape. It is also an act of defiance and a means of bringing attention to rape culture on college campuses. Although Columbia University continues dismissing her case, Emma is devoted to carrying the mattress with her until her rapist is expelled. As an emotionally stimulating thesis, information that Emma originally posted online

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