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Susan Brownmiller

  • Women as a class have never subjugated another group; we have never marched off to wars of conquest in the name of the fatherland. We have never been involved in a decision to annex the territory of a neighboring country, or to fight for foreign markets on distant shores. These are the games men play, not us. We want to be neither oppressors nor oppressed. The women's revolution is the final revolution of them all.

    • Susan Brownmiller,
    • in Robin Morgan, Sisterhood Is Powerful ()
  • ... I am white and middle-class and ambitious, and I have no trouble identifying with either the call girl or the street hustler, and I can explain why in one sentence: I've been working to support myself in the city for fifteen years, and I've had more offers to sell my body for money than I have had to be an executive.

    • Susan Brownmiller,
    • 1971, in Anne Koedt, Ellen Levine, and Anita Rapone, eds., Radical Feminism ()
  • My purpose in this book has been to give rape its history. Now we must deny it a future.

  • That some men rape provides a sufficient threat to keep all women in a constant state of intimidation, forever conscious of the knowledge that the biological tool must be held in awe, for it may turn to weapon with sudden swiftness born of harmful intent ... Rather than society's aberrants or 'spoilers of purity,' men who commit rape have served in effect as front-line masculine shock troops, terrorist guerrillas in the longest sustained battle the world has ever known.

  • Rape is ... nothing more or less than a conscious process of intimidation by which all men keep all women in a state of fear.

  • No zoologist, as far as I know, has ever observed that animals rape in their natural habitat, the wild.

  • Pornography is the undiluted essence of anti-female propaganda.

  • We are unalterably opposed to the presentation of the female body being stripped, bound, raped, tortured, mutilated and murdered in the name of commercial entertainment and free speech.

  • Who said that clothes make a statement? What an understatement that was. Clothes never shut up.

  • Pornography has been so thickly glossed over with the patina of the chic these days in the name of verbal freedom and sophistication that important distinctions between freedom of political expression (a democratic necessity), honest sex education for children (a social good) and ugly smut (the deliberate devaluation of the role of women through obscene, distorted depictions) have been hopelessly confused.

    • Susan Brownmiller,
    • "Pornography: Anti-Female Propaganda," in Evelyn Ashton-Jones and Gary A. Olson, The Gender Reader ()

Susan Brownmiller, U.S. writer, journalist, feminist

(1935)