men, masculinities and gender politics


Stephen Montagna

Redefining consent

For increased inclusion of men into violence prevention efforts to work, we need to educate them about consent. Real consent.
We're still missing the mark when it comes to teaching consent. We have heard "No means No", and I think we're finally clueing in on "Yes means Yes" - in other words that the absence of a "No" is not in itself consent. But the problem is that we are still stuck in the old paradigm. It's still based on the idea of permission: there is this line that once crossed can't be un-crossed, and the woman is just going to have to live with the consequences of her actions (emphasis HER actions). As a culture, we still blame male arousal on women.

Stephen Montagna's Take Back the Night Address

Madison, Wisconsin
United States of America
April 26, 2003

Good evening. I’d like to thank you all for coming out tonight. I’d like to thank the organizers for the opportunity to speak; it’s an opportunity I don’t take lightly, I recognize it as a priviledge, and I will endeavor to keep my comments brief.