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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 77908 Find in a Library
Title: Rape and Socio-economic Conditions in Trinidad and Tobago (From Crime and Punishment in the Caribbean, P 58-77, 1980, Rosemary Brana-Shute and Gary Brana-Shute, ed. - See NCJ-77904)
Author(s): K Pryce; D Figueria
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 20
Sponsoring Agency: University Press of Florida
Gainesville, FL 32603
Sale Source: University Press of Florida
15 15th Street, NW
Gainesville, FL 32603
United States of America
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Statistics are used to examine the correlation between rape and urbanization and population concentration in Trinidad and Tobago, and socioeconomic factors influencing rape behavior are examined, followed by a critique of the rape law in Trinidad and Tobago.
Abstract: The rape rate in Trinidad and Tobago has been rising along with the crime rate in general. Rapes are concentrated in the areas of highest urbanization, unemployment, and poverty. This suggests the theory that rape behavior is most prevalent among men who have failed to achieve material success or the status symbols of power that traditionally establish worthwhile male identity in a capitalist society. Frustrated in establishing the power of their maleness through normative socioeconomic roles, the lower class male demonstrates his power and aggressiveness through his physical symbol of maleness in contrast to the weakness of his sexual opposite in the act of rape. This behavior is further conditioned by a cultural view of machismo that emphasizes male domination of women. The foundation of legal proceedings in a rape case consists of consent (establishing that the victim did not consent to sexual intercourse with the defendant), character (showing that the victim's character does not suggest promiscuous sexual behavior), and corroboration (substantiation from someone other than the victim that the rape occurred). These requirements of the law discourage victims from pursuing the prosecution of rape, since the whole process tends to aggravate any feelings of guilt or shame stimulated by the rape. Tabular and graphic data and 34 notes are listed.
Index Term(s): Crime Rate; Cultural influences; Laws and Statutes; Rape; Urbanization; West Indies
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