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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 97903 Find in a Library
Title: Forcible Rape (From Major Forms of Crime, P 47-72, 1984, Robert F Meier, ed. - See NCJ-97901)
Author(s): S Randall; V M Rose
Date Published: 1984
Page Count: 26
Sponsoring Agency: Sage Publications, Inc
Thousand Oaks, CA 91320
Sale Source: Sage Publications, Inc
2455 Teller Road
Thousand Oaks, CA 91320
United States of America
Type: Statistics
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The definition and description of rape are discussed in terms of legal and traditional attitudes towards rape and rape victims.
Abstract: Despite recent attention to rape as a significant social problem, relatively little is known about the true incidence of rape and the characteristics of both rapists and rape victims. Statistical data collected by the Uniform Crime Reports (UCR) indicate that approximately 81,536 reported forcible rapes occurred in 1981. According to UCR statistics rape has increased more than any other major crime in the United States. Between 1977 and 1981, the rate of reported forcible rape was up 29 percent. Due to the paucity of data on rape offenders, it is difficult to characterize the criminal career of rapists, although official data and clinical studies on forcible rape suggest that it is a crime likely to be repeated. Various theories on rape and its etiology are explored, with a special focus on the victim-offender interaction as a sociocultural conflict. Several scholars report finding traditional sex-role expectations as a factor in forcible rape. Studies of social and legal reactions to rape indicate that forcible rape ranks below other crimes in seriousness assessments. Attitudes apparently relate to the relationship between the victim and the rapist: the better acquainted the victim and the rapist, the less serious the view of the offense. Despite recent stringency in rape statutes, the need for additional research and stronger laws governing rape and sexual assault are recommended. Tabular data, 15 notes, and 116 references are provided.
Index Term(s): Rape; Rape statistics; Rapists; Sexual assault victims; Victim-offender relationships
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