This Photo Series Shows Rape Can Happen To Anyone, No Matter Who Or Where You Are
WARNING: The post contains graphic images.
A 20-year-old student, Yana Mazurkevich, from Ithaca College in New York, has created a chilling photo series titled "It Happens"
Essentially inspired by the release of convicted US rapist Brock Turner, the photo series was created for Current Solutions, a sexual assault awareness media platform, which has the subjects staring directly into the camera.
It aims to show how anyone can be a rapist by depicting sexual assault by men against women, women against men, men against men, and women against women.
The fact that Yana photographed graphic depictions of victims and perpetrators of both genders and multiple sexualities is a powerful depiction of sexual assault in all its forms.
It puts forth the often not accepted view that sexual assault can happen to anyone, happen absolutely anywhere and that it can be caused by anyone, irrespective of gender, age or sexual orientation
Powerfully jarring in its portrayal, there are 9 photos in the series based on actual assaults, where the perpetrators' faces are not very visible.
The victims, on the other hand, are portrayed as lifeless and in shock but in a way that allows the viewer to realise the subjects are real people. It's her way of saying, "Look at this and don't even try to ignore it because it's right there in front of you to stare at."
Speaking about the need to represent both genders and other sexualities as victims and perpetrators, Yana told Catch News that, "Rape is not a logical thing to think about. Rape happens. Doesn't matter how you look like, or how old you are. It happens to anyone, and it's disgusting." And she has portrayed the same effectively.
Yana, who herself has been a victim of sexual assault, wants people to "talk about this, to understand each other's thinking process"
And going by the reaction her photo series has garnered over the Internet, it was shared on Tumblr, receiving more than 141,800 notes, and on the Current Solutions' Facebook page, it has been shared over 63,000 times, shows that a conversation is happening
"I am touched by those who took the time to share their story with me, and to me, that's progress," Yana told BuzzFeed.
"Conversation needs to happen, and I am extremely happy that so far people have been stepping out of their comfort zones to speak up and start one," she added.
This last photo portrays the Stanford assault survivor:
“You don’t know me, but you’ve been inside me, and that’s why we’re here today.”