It's Time We Confront 'Not Rape'

In gray area of sex violations, models are especially vulnerable

By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff

Posted Dec 31, 2008 4:53 PM CST

(Newser) – The definition of rape needs an update—more and more, men prey on young girls who are made to feel they are complicit in "a million male behaviors that are not so much rape as rape-ish,” and models are especially vulnerable, writes one in Jezebel. In a look at the “not rape” phenomenon, gaining press after being featured in a recent book, "Tatiana" looks back at her questionable sexual encounters and those of other young models—some of whom started their careers as young as 12.

“Agency directors. Financial backers. Clients”—all are potential “not-rapists,” she writes. “Being not raped is something our work environment tacitly encourages us to shrug off.” But it's not just models who are forced to deal with this "entire constellation of potential violations." Indeed, "almost every sentient woman has more than enough reason by experience to be afraid of" such advances.

Because their careers start so young, models are especially vulnerable to "not rape," writes Tatiana in Jezebel. In this photo, a model walks the runway on Dec. 8, 2008 in New York.   (Getty Images)
Models have many run-ins with "not rape," writes Tatiana in Jezebel. In this photo, a model walks the runway during the Oscar de la Renta Pre-Fall 2009 fashion show on Dec. 8, 2008 in New York City.   (Getty Images)
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As Peterson's essay illustrates so aptly, there are a million male behaviors that are not so much rape as rape spectrum, or rape-ish, or not rape by degree instead of by kind.
- Tatiana, Jezebel writer and model

The fashion industry probably has a case to answer for perpetuating the idea that teenaged girls—or the occasional leggy 12-year-old—are the equivalent of grown women in every way. - Tatiana, Jezebel writer and model

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