Rape Is Rape: How Denial, Distortion, and Victim Blaming Are Fueling a Hidden Acquaintance Rape Crisis

Jody Raphael, Author
Jody Raphael. Lawrence Hill (IPG, dist.), $18.95 trade paper (272p) ISBN 978-1-61374-479-6
Open Ebook - 274 pages - 978-1-61374-480-2
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Attorney and advocate Raphael (Freeing Tammy: Women, Drugs, and Incarceration) effectively argues that “the time has come for rape denial to become as unacceptable as Holocaust denial.” Here she holds all parties accountable: male conservatives and right-wing apologists who push the idea of false rape claims as female revenge; feminists like Katie Roiphe, who suggests that those who claim to be victims of acquaintance rape may be confusing rape with “bad sex”; politicians like Todd Akin who distinguish between “forcible rape” and other assaults; police who neglect to test rape kits; victim advocates who use inaccurate statistics; and journalists who use a “he said/she said” model for reporting. The resulting culture of victim-blaming means that when victims do come forward, they can expect indifference, disbelief, and even punishment. Raphael presents clear statistics on rape prevalence and reporting, consistent with a number of studies often ignored by policymakers and the press. She juxtaposes this research with firsthand interviews with acquaintance-rape victims and in-depth discussions of recent rape cases in the news, including those involving the Duke lacrosse team and Julian Assange. The result is a compelling, grim account of the struggle for victims of sexual violence to be heard and believed. (Apr.)
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