The Role of “Real Rape” and “Real Victim” Stereotypes in the Police Reporting Practices of Sexually Assaulted Women

Title: The Role of “Real Rape” and “Real Victim” Stereotypes in the Police Reporting Practices of Sexually Assaulted Women

Link: pdf

Summary: 

Some feminists have argued that rape myths constrain women’s reporting of sexual assault to the police. The authors investigated whether myth-associated characteristics of sexual assaults play a role in police reporting behaviors of women. A sample of 186 sexual assault cases seen at a hospital-based sexual assault care center in 1994 was analyzed using logistic regression. A positive association was found between reporting a sexual assault to the police and two overtly violent components of the “real rape” myth: the use of physical force and the occurrence of physical injury.

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