Alyssa is the name, satire is the game — literally! My senior thesis is called Party Foul, and it’s a satirical card game to start conversations about sexual violence and inappropriate behavior. Perfect for bachelor parties, friendly gatherings, and really getting to know who your friends are. Tread carefully, though — you don’t want to be the king of this game.
Harassment is defined by Google as “aggressive pressure or intimidation.”
Perhaps this is why some people don’t like to believe they’re guilty of harassment, or don’t find some of their actions inherently wrong. They believe harassment needs to be a violent and persistent act. The fact is, when we talk about harassment in the realm of sexual violence, even the smallest microaggressions count toward this idea of a “pyramid.” At the bottom of this pyramid, we see “less serious” offenses, including things such as the famed “locker room talk” and “boys will be boys”. It builds into more offenses, increasing ‘seriousness’, with the top of the pyramid being rape. And this is what we should picture when we talk about these things.
With my thesis, I’ve been tackling the ideal of opening conversations, and making this education more interactive and on a friend-to-friend basis. In doing so, I have developed the card game Party Foul, which rewards players who exhibit good behaviors, and playfully shames players who commit offenses of harassment and sexual violence. It also challenges players to think about their own actions, and think about how serious these behaviors are. Masked as “all fun and games”, it has made people begin to think whether or not these are really joking matters.