‘I like to think of myself as more than a head of hair or a set of looks.’
Kit Harington’s character may not have had any screen time in of Game of Thrones but his presence has certainly been felt across the web regardless. Talking to Sunday Times Magazine the actor discussed a number of matters from Rose Leslie (Ygritte) to his close relationship with his cousin, Laurent, who suffers from a “double diagnosis of autism and Down’s syndrome.” However, it’s his experience of “sexism,” which has really set Twitter alight.
During the interview, the conversation turns — — to the pressures of stardom and objectification. Harington begins,
“I think there is a double standard. If you said to a girl, ‘Do you like being called a babe?’ and she said, ‘No, not really,’ she’d be absolutely right. I like to think of myself as more than a head of hair or a set of looks. It’s demeaning. Yes, in some ways you could argue I’ve been employed for a look I have. But there’s a sexism that happens towards men.”
And, while you could argue that good-looks have helped the 29-year-old actor’s career, it’s the use of the word “sexism” which has really got people riled up.
“There’s definitely a sexism in our industry that happens towards women, and there is towards men as well. At some points during photoshoots when I’m asked to strip down, I felt that. If I felt I was being employed for just my looks, I’d stop acting.”
You see, the issue Harington is addressing here is his annoyance with the shallow nature of Hollywood as an industry — not “sexism,” which is something women within most industries deal with on the daily; sexual harassment, “harmless jokes,” for example. This is not to say that the shallow manner in which Harington is addressed isn’t annoying, or depressing even, it’s just not quite the same thing.
And, of course, people haven’t held back with letting him know that:
‘You know nothing, Jon Snow’
“Kit Harrington says male stars are suffering the same sexism as female stars” Me:
— ilianA (@spacesharmony)
‘Objectification does not equal sexism’
Objectification sexism. You know nothing, Kit Harington
— Ranxi (@ranxi)
Mark your words
Buying a thesaurus for Kit Harington for Christmas
— Camilla (@Cilly247)
Kit Harrington here, revealing that he doesn’t know what sexism is.
— Wil (@wilcoclahas)
Basically, it’s a big old ‘oops’ all round
Kit Harrington (Jon Snow) lives up to his brand identity, confuses shallowness of visual culture for anti-men sexism
— karachikhatmal (@karachikhatmal)
Of course, we love Kit Harington and Game of Thrones, and while we don’t endorse this online barrage, it is important to understand the difference between objectification and sexism.
Luckily as one soul has summarized, we ‘aint gonna get anywhere without a little conversation.
Tempting as this is… Hard to ask men to take objectification seriously if we don’t listen to them.
— Linda (@lindyloolah)
What do you think should be done to tackle sexism once and for all?