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  • PAPER RAPE MAZE: Template 3

    Part of the Rape Maze Series, the Paper Rape Mazes are small poster-type sheets designed to encourage graffiti-like response to guerilla type installations in women's safe spaces, including women's washrooms in law schools.

    Produced in 25 sheet pads of cautionary neon yellow, the Paper Rape Mazes are meant to be freely circulated through communities of activists, scholars and students.
    * These docs will soon be available on this website.



Before tearing off a sheet and posting it in a suitable location, participants are encouraged to begin the response action by penning a word or phrase into the linguistic grid. Some "completed and returned" Paper Rape Mazes will be posted on the site in the future.

BACKGROUND: The wording and layout of the Paper Rape Maze is modelled after the Hearings at the Rape Maze ground plan. A dizzying intersection of terms and phrases map the oppressive language of the legal regulation of rape: words, phrases, legal criteria and judicial pronouncements.*

The concept was developed in response to a series of conversations on the struggles of teaching law that encompasses women's lived experience and the question of finding a site where female law students could discuss feminist legal interests in a supportive environment. The work is one form of rejoinder to the recorded, and all-to-often hushed, expressions of female law students on the challenges of studying a discipline, and its system, founded on embedded male histories.

"It is debilitating to be in a centre of learning which sends out direct and indirect messages that the perspectives, feelings, values and actions of all different kinds of women are inferior, easily predictable, inconsequential and a waste of time..... undermined in such an environment.... Throughout law school,…I came to feel unsure of my own instincts and beliefs, since they were portrayed as being so extreme and unreasonable... The message conveyed is that…dispassionate interpretations and ways of reasoning are superior forms of expression and understanding."
Jill Abrahmczyk (1990) "The Tyranny of the Majority: Liberalism in Legal Education", Canadian Journal of Women and the Law/Revue Femmes et Droit, Vol. 5, pp.449- 461

* permissions pending

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c.j. fleury
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