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Words Hurt

Award: Wood Pencil

Wood Pencil / Direct / Digital / 2008

Verbal abuse or psychological violence is the most common form of violence experienced by women. It is also one of the most harrowing according to the New Zealand Women’s Refuge. This viral microsite aims to increase public awareness of this destructive form of violence that doesn’t damage bones, but destroys self-respect. Users are asked to interact, by using their microphone, with a woman whose expression is strong, but blank. When a user yells into the microphone, corresponding bruises or cuts appear on the woman’s face, which fade when the interaction stops. This interaction was a chilling demonstration of the unseen effects of verbal abuse.

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