6 Oct, 2022 @ 16:34
1 min read

Madrid halls of residence takes action in wake of obscene sexist chants directed at girls’ college

Sexism at Spanish universities
A screenshot of the video with sexist chants at the Colegio Mayor Elías Ahuja in Madrid.

A university halls of residence in Madrid has expelled at least one student after a video of sexist chants directed from the building to a female halls opposite went viral on social media. The outcry caused by the video has been widespread, with even Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez passing comment. 

“Whores, come out of your burrows like rabbits, you’re all f*cking nymphomaniacs, I promise you that you are all going to f*ck in the bullring!” a solitary man is heard shouting from a window of the Colegio Mayor Elías Ahuja halls of residence. “Let’s go Ahuja!” he bellows. 

At that moment, the blinds of the rest of the windows in the apartment block shoot up, to reveal the silhouettes of more than a hundred more male students who all start to cheer and to whistle. 

The incident took place on Sunday night at the Ahuja residence, which is affiliated with Madrid’s Complutense University. It has caused a storm not just online but also in the media. 

In response, the Colegio Mayor released a statement via its Instagram account in which it condemned the actions, calling them “incomprehensible and unacceptable in society”. 

The statement went on to say that it would be offering an apology to the Colegio Mayor Santa Mónica, the girls’ halls at which the chants were directed, as well as “obligatory participation in gender-equality” courses for its residents. It also made clear there would be expulsions. 

According to press reports on Thursday, the man seen leading the chant in the video has already been expelled from the college. 

“We cannot tolerate this behaviour, which creates hatred and attacks women,” wrote Socialist Party leader Pedro Sánchez via Twitter. “It’s particularly painful to see that the protagonists are young people,” he continued. “Enough sexism!”

The leader of the main opposition Popular Party, Alberto Núñez Feijóo, also used Twitter to condemn the incident. “We should be working in all areas to end these intolerable sexist attitudes,” he wrote. 

There may, however, be a lot of work to do to change attitudes. Speaking to radio network Cadena SER, a former resident of the girls college explained that male residents would shout “¡Mónicas, putas!”, or “Mónicas, whores!” at them every single day, and that such sexism was “a regular occurrence”.

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Simon Hunter

Simon Hunter has been living in Madrid since the year 2000 and has worked as a journalist and translator practically since he arrived. For 16 years he was at the English Edition of Spanish daily EL PAÍS, editing the site from 2014 to 2022, and is currently one of the Spain reporters at The Times. He is also a voice actor, and can be heard telling passengers to "mind the gap" on Spain's AVLO high-speed trains.

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