Rape Culture: Are Women Asking for It? Essay

Rape Culture: Are Women Asking for It? Essay

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Merril Smith’s Encycolpedia of Rape defines the term “rape culture” as “one in which rape and other sexual violence against women . . . [is] both prevalent and considered the norm” (174). Rape is not a new subject in today’s society, its origins reaching far back into history. What causes rape, though? Is it the primal drive of men to exhibit dominance over all women, or do the women share the blame because of the way they dress, act, or do their makeup? Modern American culture would place the blame on the woman who “provoked” the attack; however, a woman should not have to park closer to the building she is entering, nor should she have to carry protection just in case a sexual predator decides that she is his next victim. Men are just as much to blame for rape as women.
Rape is not uncommon in the history of the world. The Rape of Dinah in the book of Genesis is one of the first accounts in existence that talks about rape. The Rape of Lucretia was the indirect cause behind the overturning of the Roman monarchy in 510 BC, leading to the establishment of the Roman republic. Sexual violence is as much a part of human history as anything else; the only difference is that rape and its sister crimes have always been shrouded in different shades of gray.
Rape has many different faces and definitions. The term “rape” is used to define any unwanted form of forced sexual intercourse. Acquaintance rape occurs when the woman is somewhat, if not, well acquainted with her attacker. A subcategory of acquaintance rape is date rape, in which the victim is romantically linked to her attacker in some way. Another type of rape is marital rape. This is a serious concern because the husband is abusing the sanctity of the marriage, and respect for ...


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...lie. “Raising Girls in the Twenty-First Century.” Buchwald, Fletcher, and Roth 212-31.
Fletcher, Pamela R. "Dismantling Rape Culture Around The World: A Social Justice Imperative." Forum On Public Policy: A Journal Of The Oxford Round Table 6.4 (2010): 1. Supplemental Index. Web. 31 Oct. 2013.
Franiuk, Renae, and E. Shain. "Beyond Christianity: The Status Of Women And Rape Myths." Sex Roles 65.11/12 (2011): 783-791. SocINDEX with Full Text. Web. 31 Oct. 2013.
Katz, Jackson. The Macho Paradox, Why Some Men Hurt Women and How All Men Can Help. Naperville: Sourcebooks Inc., 2006. Print.
Madhubuti, Haki R. “On Becoming Antirapist.” Buchwald, Fletcher, and Roth 173-87.
Miedzian, Myriam. “How Rape is Encouraged in American Boys and What We Can Do to Stop It.” Buchwald, Fletch, and Roth 159-72.
Smith, Merril D. Encyclopedia of Rape. Westport: Greenwood Press, 2004. Print.

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