E for Ecstasy by Nicholas Saunders
Appendix 1: Reference Section
- 42 Luvdup and DeElited, by Sheila Henderson, researcher for Lifeline,
a non-statutory drug agency in Manchester. A paper given at South Bank Polytechnic
in May 1992
- This paper discusses women and drugs. Information is based on individual
and group interviews with 109 young women and 35 men.
- Henderson says Ecstasy users are distinct from opiate users in several
ways: for example, they take the drug in public, not private. They do not
regard junkies as antiheroes.
- Women on the rave scene are even less informed about drugs than men.
They are also less likely to be body-searched on their way into clubs. Although
in some ways women behave in a more liberated way in the rave scene, it
is hard for them to become DJs, the pivotal figures in the rave scene, and
they still use their appearance to get into clubs.
- More liberated behaviour includes being less likely to be closely tied
to a boyfriend. Instead women will come with a group of friends, often without
any men. The atmosphere of the rave inspires confidence and independence,
for instance it is common for women to mix outside their own group of friends.
This has provided a way for young women to rise above being a visual/sexual
object. Dealing in E has also provided status for some girls. Outside the
rave scene, girls described as 'ravers' are often regarded as sexually available,
mainly because of their dress, but within the rave they are not hassled
except by men on alcohol. Girls don't feel threatened by men who approach
them at raves and therefore are free to respond. "I used to go to indie
clubs which are alcohol orientated . . . there was a definite pressure to
cop off with people at this type of club. At house clubs it's much more
just getting to know people," Henderson quotes one as saying. The general
consensus is that "you don't go to a rave to cop [copulate]".
This is based on men not getting erections on Ecstasy. Women generally feel
far less sexual pressure at raves. They can be massaged by a strange man
on the dance floor without it being a threatening prelude to a sexual advance.
Flirting is not socially acceptable at raves and is not responded to. Even
men encountered on the street are not perceived as a threat, if the women
discover that they are on Ecstasy. However, women do not appear to feel
less sexy on E and sometimes initiate sexual activity.
- Sexual divisions are blurred at raves and displays of affection are
accepted. Women are free to hug each other and gays and lesbians are accepted.
E is for Ecstasy by Nicholas Saunders (email@example.com)
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