Published: Fri, January 12, 2018
People | By Leon Thompson

French Women Accuse #MeToo of Having Side Effects

French Women Accuse #MeToo of Having Side Effects

The French junior minister for women's rights, Marlene Schiappa, said, "There are in this open letter some things that are deeply offensive and false", reported the ABC News.

While stars of the American entertainment industry were lining up to outdo each other in showing support for the MeToo movement (and perhaps to obscure widespread sexual predation that has always been endemic to Hollywood) at the Golden Globe awards Sunday, Catherine Deneuve, one of the greats of French cinema, joined 100 other French women in signing a letter declaring that MeTooism is turning into a witch hunt and promises to harm artistic freedom.

According to a report in ABC News, calling it "a bit like the awkward work colleague or annoying uncle who doesn't understand what's happening", women activists came down hard on Deneuve and other signatories of the letter.

What do you think of the open letter?

Italian actress Asia Argento-one of the first women to accuse Harvey Weinstein of sexual misconduct-tweeted "Deneuve and other French women tell the world how their interiorized misogyny has lobotomized them to the point of no return", while a group of about 30 activists, led by French feminist Caroline De Haas, responded by saying that Deneuve and the co-signers had conflated flirting and sexual violence.

The letter has sparked a renewed discussion about the nature of sexual harassment since publication.

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After describing requests from publishers to make male characters "less sexist" and a Swedish bill that will require people to give explicit consent before engaging in sexual activity, the women write, "One more effort and two adults who will want to sleep together will first check, through an app on their phone, a document in which the practices they accept and those they refuse will be duly listed". "Violence isn't heightened seduction", reported the Deadline.

Author Colleen Doran said that Deneuve's views would have been completely different if she were not rich and handsome. They worry #MeToo could be a movement that sees no boundaries, where censorship is replacing artistic expression. She can make sure that her wages are equal to a man's but not feel forever traumatized by a man who rubs himself against her in the subway, even if that is regarded as an offense.

Twitter user with the name Deplorable Barbara wrote, "Catherine Deneuve is absolutely correct!"

"As women we do not recognise ourselves in this feminism, which beyond denouncing the abuse of power, takes on a hatred of men and of sexuality".

Deneuve had earlier expressed annoyance with the #MeToo social media campaign to shame men accused of harassing women.

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