#HerNameWasReevaSteenkamp; This is a Story Of Male Violence – Let’s Remember The Victim

This morning, a South African friend broke the news of Reeva Steenkamp’s death. At the time, an idea was floating around Facebook that her killer, Oscar Pistorious, had mistaken Reeva for a burglar. The two were in a relationship, and over the past few hours, details of the abuse Reeva endured at Pistorious’ hands have begun to surface. After posting a link to my own facebook profile, a friend informed me that Pistourious had shot Reeva four times. It was becoming clear that this was no accident.

As I headed over to twitter this evening, I was disappointed to see Pistorious’ name trending, alongside jokes. This is the last time I’ll use his name in this post.

See, Reeva Steenkamp should be the name on everyone’s lips. But her name was missing from the trending topics. Hell, I saw tweets referencing her death that failed to even mention the fact a woman had been killed by male violence, let alone Reeva’s name. She’s been dead less than 24 hours, and the patriarchy is already erasing her. Fancy that, eh… This would be the same patriarchy which failed to mention Andrea Johnson by name when reporting how her husband had murdered her before killing himself. The same patriarchy which sees women silenced, and ignored when they try to speak out against men’s violence against women. The same patriarchy which sees the murder of the prostituted class ignored, and women blamed for their own murders. Women are not allowed to live a life free of blame; the patriarchy won’t allow it.

We’ve heard how Reeva was an FHM model. The fact she was a law graduate was ignored. The fact she spoke out against violence against women has been ignored. Even in her death, Reeva has been objectified. Googling “Reeva Steenkamp” in the news section of Google relays, at present, 2,350 results. Images added to the search engine database, following her death, included an FHM cover, as well as various photos of Reeva in a bikini. Googling her killer’s name leaves us with 201,000 news results, although I’m unable to determine how many of these were added today. All I can say for certain is that I got 27 pages in to the results, and gave up.

We do not need to know Reeva was a model to feel saddened by her death. But objectifying her following her death remains a huge kick to the teeth. We need to remember her name, and we need to keep Reeva’s name at the forefront of our minds. It is time we stopped glorifying men who kill women, no matter how unintentionally we do so. Our conversation should not erase the victims of men’s violence against women, but instead, they should become the forefront of our discussion. We cannot end violence against women when the women killed by male violence are forgotten.

Her name was Reeva Steenkamp. And we must not forget that.

*Edit: Google is now displaying more results for Reeva in the news. The stats above were what I found at 23:01 on 14/2/2013

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3 thoughts on “#HerNameWasReevaSteenkamp; This is a Story Of Male Violence – Let’s Remember The Victim

  1. Pingback: #HerNameWasReevaSteenkamp; This is a Story Of Male Violence – Let’s Remember The Victim | Mitherings from Morningside

  2. Malestream media is avidly sensationalising this case wherein the focus is on Pistorious and the fact he happened to be a successful athlete. As always it is a male’s public personae which supposedly defines his ‘public respectability’ not the fact police had received at least two reports Pistorius was committing violence against Reeva Steenkamp in the privacy of his home. Yes what men do behind their ‘private homes’ is no one’s business is it? Which is why intimate male violence against women continues to be ignored and declared ‘a private matter.’

    Pistorius has a history of committing male violence against women and this has been erased by malestream media, because Pistorius is male and white so obviously his case is a ‘tragic one’ wherein he overcame his disability and achieved subsequent fame and celebrity status. Already malestream media is alleging Pistorius ‘changed’ when he achieved fame and fortune – ah so that absolves Pistorius of any accountability because ‘fame and fortune’ are to blame. I predict common excuses/justifications will be made in Pistorius’ defence because he is the real victim not Reeva Steenkamp who died because she is female not male and did not show sufficient subservience/submission to a male.

    As always, men are never accountable or responsible for their choice/decision to commit lethal violence against women. Male perpetrators are always the real victims and the innumerable women these males have murdered/committed violence against are either ignored or else the woman is portrayed as having provoked male and hence caused her own femicide.

    Reeva Steenkamp was a female human being who was more than just another disposable sexual service station for men to consume and then discard. She was brutally murdered by a male who claims ‘he thought she was a burglar!’ However malestream media and men will only remember Reeva Steenkamp as ‘an FHM model’ – that is if they even remember her name, because men do not view/accept women are autonomous human beings but only exist to serve men 24/7 in whatever capacity men demand. This includes being males’ disposable interchangeable sexual service stations. Only males are accorded individuality and autonomy – this is the reality of living in a Male Supremacist/Patriarchal System.

  3. Malestream media is remembering Reeva Steenkamp because less than 24 hours after she was brutally murdered by Pistorious – ‘he claims he shot her by mistake because he thought she was a burglar using the bathroom’ – by portraying Ms. Steenkamp as males’ dehumanised sexual service station! As usual malestream media continues to promote men’s lie that women are divided into either a man’s personal sexual property or males’ ‘ public sexual property and Ms. Steenkamp is apparently males’ public sexual property.

    See link below concerning the latest vile women-hating offering malestream media is enacting and yes malestream media will profit and men will continue to believe women are either ‘virgins or whores’ because that is why women supposedly exist – to serve men in whatever capacity they demand. Patriarchal reversal in action because no woman is a whore but innumerable men are ‘whores’ given they are obsessed with viewing dehumanised, sexualised images of women and girls.

    When was the last time malestream media depicted a dead male victim of male violence as ‘just another dehumanised/sexualised disposable commodity?’ Never is the answer – because men are not ‘sex’ they are autonomous males.

    Note first comment on this article is from a male who believes it is fine for malestream media to sexually dehumanise women. Wonder if he would say the same if it was a male sexually dehumanised? Since when did free speech entail mens’ right to view/condone male hatred/male contempt for women because they happen to be female. Men always claim ‘freedom of speech’ every time a woman or girl is portrayed as a dehumanised sexualised object and become hysterical on the extremely rare occasion an image of a totally naked full frontal male is put into the public domain.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/feb/15/reeva-steenkamp-body-on-front-page

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