ERIC Number: ED297252
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984
Reference Count: 0
Sexual Violence. Work in Progress No. 83-05.
Rates of sexual assault on women are sufficiently high that women live with a lifelong, pervasive fear of violence. Research has just begun to identify and analyze the health and mental health effects of sexual assault on victims, and studies are investigating the social and individual motivations of perpetrators. This document contains a colloquium lecture on the issue of sexual violence which looks at the victims of sexual assault and the offenders. It discusses social attitudes toward sexual assault, concluding that most sexual assaults are implicitly condoned by society. It considers the social functions of sexual violence, asserting that sexual assault is a socialized behavior and a means by which male supremacy is enforced and perpetuated. Strategies for resistance are suggested, and the organized efforts of women in the last 10 years are noted as having changed rape laws in every state, created rape crisis centers in every major city, established the National Center for Prevention and Control of Rape, and ended secrecy and raised consciousness about rape. Several implications of sexual violence for women's psychological development are explored. A series of questions, answers, and highlights of a discussion session which followed the colloquium lecture are included in the paper. (Author/NB)
Publication Type: Reports - General
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Wellesley Coll., MA. Stone Center for Developmental Services and Studies.