The latest trend Women who eat on tubes is, admittedly, a pretty moronic and generally irrelevant addition to social media.

In the group, women, eating, while travelling on the tube have been photographed in what has been labelled by founder Tony Burke as an ‘observational study’, and some strange attempt at an artistic experiment.

Burke appeared on Radio 4 this week, saying:

catching people unaware is the art.

Which makes it a slightly creepy ‘experiment’ whichever gender it targets. But the principal reason this page has spurned furious outrage is its choice to single out women as the subjects.

Ultimately, though, in my opinion the outrage is just as ridiculous as the group.

The London Underground: fresh misogynistic horrors lurk within

The London Underground: fresh misogynistic horrors lurk within

The speed with which critics have cried the M-word against this ‘observational, not judgemental’ art project is emblematic of the political state of this country, where neurotic and paranoid neo-liberals have been able to aggressively realise their misguided ideals under the false pretence of political correctness, further dividing in the process. A case in point, the Southampton Uni Feminist society. Don’t get me wrong, I feel equality is a necessary human right, but equality does not equal jumping on every example of petty, everyday and quite frankly debatable sexism. This is a way to not only avoid more serious and pertinent issues, but to also promote the raising of one set of people above others. Serious issues are raised by our University’s Fem Soc, but so much of what they do pales in comparison to problems that, if solved, could have a real and dramatic effect on equality in this country. Worse than that, it cuts them off from the rest of society who many of which are also battling with repression, inequalities and prejudices.

Spotted! Users post photos of women eating on the tube as part of Burke's artistic experiment

Spotted! Users post photos of women eating on the tube as part of Burke’s artistic experiment

Surely it is in our best interest not as a University, or even as a nation but as a human race to go about trying to strive for equality across ALL walks of life, rather than focusing on one specific group of people who are considered to be unequal, most often by themselves? Equality by definition doesn’t favour one particular group. Indeed, I would even argue that the ones who feel that pseudo-sexism like Women who eat on tubes is such a problem, are those who feel that women ARE inferior in the first place. When will this vicious circle stop? When will people realise that to create real change and bring about a real sense of equality and togetherness, we must look beyond the type of groups that defeat their own purpose by separating themselves? Ultimately, groups such as the aforementioned Fem Soc are noble in purpose but hopelessly misguided in practice. Yes I agree that to fight for the betterment of a group of people who are (or have been) otherwise neglected or disenfranchised is at face value a just cause; but in continuing a plight against minor issues are we not simply continuing to highlight our perceived differences, albeit in a somewhat more nuanced and subtle manner? This dilemma outlines an issue that has been prevalent in our society for some time now, and allows structures of inequality to remain in place, and social systems to divide, and conquer.

Misogynistic, funny or just generally weird? Is the criticism deserved? Let us know your thoughts on Women who eat on tubes in comments!

"Women Who Eat On Tubes backlash: as ridiculous as the concept itself", out of 5 based on 52 ratings.

19 Comments »

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  • Angry
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    Shame on the sotontab for publishing such misogynistic crap.You are the reason why we still need feminism. If you had actually done your research into feminism and femsoc you would realise that feminism is not just about women, but raising awareness for anyone who is oppressed by our patriarchal society. What examples do you have of femsoc being “misguided in practice”? The reason people didn’t agree with the “art” project is because these women didn’t want to be part of this study, and why is the focus on humiliating and demeaning women? Maybe before you write such an article trying to put down feminism, you should do your research into what feminism actually means. p.s i’m not even in femsoc but reckon i’m going to join next year!

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    Srs
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    No

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    South Hill B Rat
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    Hi, welcome to the real world. R.E.A.L, W.O.R.L.D. Where’d you been all these while?

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    bobby
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    “why is the focus on humiliating and demeaning women?”

    That’s not the focus. That’s what you assume it to be. It celebrates women eating. The real crime for our society is that so many women jump to the conclusion that a picture of them eating cannot be intended to do anything but shame – and beneath that often lurks some deeply misandristic views.

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  • male feminista
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    Intersectionality – look it up. It’s a concept many feminists (including myself) believe in.

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  • Not So Fresh
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    Not satisfied allowing the trolls to dominate the comments, the Tab tries its hand at letting one write an actual article.

    Results are predictable.

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  • Mark ‘Fucked a FemSoc’ Dean
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    I think this article has got it right!

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  • A Student
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    Although I agree with the idea of gender equality, I do not support the militant actions of certain feminists who feel the need to knit-pick at any small issue that they feel ‘offends’ women in some way when in reality it doesn’t. Yes femminists do have to raise issues of inequality, yet for something this trivial, its ridiculous. Let me give an counter example. If a woman photographs a men eating on buses as an observational experiment and men complain its fine, yet as soon a man does the same thing to women, they are accused of sexist. I loathe the idea that we live in a society of double standards where its alright for one group to something, yet when another group does the same thing it is somehow diabolical. Same applies to the work place, I agree that women should have access to more executive roles, yet they should earn them, not be given to them because the law says that half of all executive positions should be filled by women.

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  • Dr. Ass
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    This comment has been edited in order to comply with our comments policy
    Hey man, Im pretty sure backlash on the backlash of wweot is pretty lame in and of itself. the fact that you had to go through a lengthy process of writing down an essay about this “moronic” fad and then checing it for spelling mistakes (you run a tight ship dude) AND sending it in for approval is pretty weird. I get that you have an opinion and thats cool but saying other people’s opinion is stupid is such a dick move. At what point did you just go “i’ll show these feminists what’s what”? Because i don’t see an article by femsoc on the matter. Yeah people are pissed off but you had to go all the way and write an article about it? why man why?

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    Feminist Logic
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    Feminists are well known for shouting down arguments and saying that people who hold differing views are wrong, so isn’t this just using their own logic?

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  • Disappointed student
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    This article is absolutely horrendous. The author has a clearly limited understanding of the diversity of feminism, for a start, and like so many other people has misguidedly decided that “feminism” (their narrow-minded, badly researched perception of it) is irrelevant and stupid. I am not a member of FemSoc and I know very little about them, but how this writer can assume that the entire group are misguided in practice puzzles me immensely – also, why on Earth was this article an appropriate place to insert a scathing review of a uni society? I can’t even be bothered to write about the bit where the author discusses “paranoid and neurotic neo-liberals”, and “the state of this country”, but it’s a bit shocking and disgusting.

    This whole article actually offends me. The author should do some much-needed research, and whoever decided to publish this should also be ashamed of their own ignorance.

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  • Ian Martin
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    Feminists are bigots and haters, they don’t want equality, they just want to denigrate men and boys every day.
    men who have studied female behaviour, and have taken the red pill, soon realise that it is men who have had the worst deal since human life began. Disposable men, servants, who keep women alive. Even now, 72% of governmemt taxes are from males.

    Our sons are NOT potential rapists and our daughters are NOT perenial victims, femimism is beginning to perish, it has become a violent hate movement.Men AND women will soon dispose of these bigots.

    WWEOT is stranger shaming, and i agreewith the article

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    Paranoid neol-liberal
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    You seem extremely angry against a group which has almost certainly done nothing bigoted or hateful against you…

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    A couple of links to get you started.
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    http://forums.digitalspy.co.uk/showthread.php?t=1770553
    http://youtu.be/rOnuZsXRwTA

    Feminists decry men for invading “female spaces”, particularly on the topic of rape which they continue to treat as a gendered issue, then prevent said men from creating “male spaces”.

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  • Sofia
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    This is a great article. Equality should be seen as an objective mission across all people, and then applied to specific issues, for example women’s rights, to achieve said equality. Focusing on a single cause from the offset by it’s very definition is a form of sexist discrimination. Brave and unbending rationality in this article. Bravo

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  • Ian Martin
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    there have been similar websites and facegroups where women take photos, tubecrush and the lady in the NY half marathon who photoed ‘hot men’. of course then it is ‘hilarious’, that is why femimism is beimg sidelined by most women now, they are out of touch, hate organisation

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  • A woman
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    Aah, this is so refreshing, compared to the usual overtly “feminist” outlooks shoved down our throats: so not worry, my friend, all the females commenting on this (and many an article written along a similar vein) have taken it too far! Feminism is about equal rights and not special rights! And, yes, there really is so much more people could be doing right now for the welfare of one and all. Not just females.

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  • GarbageMan
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    Patriarchy 3:16 says I just whipped your ass

    Reply

  • alex cattrell who loves amy
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    hey guys! as a member of the women who eat on tubes group, I can honestly say the group is amzing, the comments are so wonderful.

    Reply