Defined Lines started as a research group studying the impact of bystander intervention on college students’ attitudes toward a number of areas concerned with sexual violence. The aim of the intervention is to give people information, break myths, and empower people to be proactive bystanders in situations that span the spectrum of sexual violence. From jokes, to cat calls, to assault, we were emboldened by the words of Gloria Steinem, “Whenever one person stands up and says, ‘wait a minute, this is wrong,’ it helps other people do the same.”
Well, we believe a culture that supports, condones, or celebrates the subjugation of one person to another in any form is wrong. So we wanted to extend our impact so that more people can join us in saying, “this is wrong!”
After the controversy surrounding a popular summer time song, we were inspired by the resistance against the messages it supported. Borrowing from one clever parody of the song done by the Law Revue Girls and found here: http://youtu.be/tC1XtnLRLPM we decided it was time to define the lines as an organization.
Our first step was to extend our programming. We revamped our bystander training and decided to create a campus movement that includes break-out groups concerned with understanding the cultural contributions to sexism, gender-bias, and sexual violence.
Next we wanted to create an online presence so that others – LIKE YOU – can share the information present within this website with your friends, family, strangers, any and all people, so the conversation continues!
Like most things in pop culture, the discussion and attention created by blurred lines will fade and a decade from now we’ll be reminded of the song on a post on the future version of buzzfeed. But the resistance against the messages within that song, the opposition to a culture that supports sexual violence, need not fade away.
That’s why Defined Lines was created. We believe that everyone deserves to be safe. We hope you’ll join us in raising awareness, extending the conversation, and creating cultural change.
~The Defined Lines Organization