The revered French actor Catherine Deneuve has hit out at a new “puritanism” sparked by sexual harassment scandals, declaring that men should be “free to hit on” women.
Deneuve was one of about 100 female French writers, performers and academics who wrote an open letter deploring the wave of “denunciations” that has followed claims that the Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein raped and sexually assaulted women over decades.
They claimed the “witch-hunt” that followed threatens sexual freedom.
“Rape is a crime, but trying to seduce someone, even persistently or cack-handedly, is not – nor is men being gentlemanly a macho attack,” said the letter published in the newspaper Le Monde.
“Men have been punished summarily, forced out of their jobs when all they did was touch someone’s knee or try to steal a kiss,” said the letter, which was also signed by Catherine Millet, author of the explicit 2002 bestseller The Sexual Life of Catherine M.
Full disclosure… I have had a lifelong crush on Catherine Deneuve, she can do no wrong ever.