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Rape

Rape

Overview
Rape is a type of sexual assault
Sexual assault
Sexual assault is an assault of a sexual nature on another person, or any sexual act committed without consent. Although sexual assaults most frequently are by a man on a woman, it may involve any combination of two or more men, women and children....

 usually involving sexual intercourse
Sexual intercourse
Sexual intercourse, also known as copulation or coitus, commonly refers to the act in which a male's penis enters a female's vagina for the purposes of sexual pleasure or reproduction. The entities may be of opposite sexes, or they may be hermaphroditic, as is the case with snails...

, which is initiated by one or more persons against another person without that person's consent
Consent
Consent refers to the provision of approval or agreement, particularly and especially after thoughtful consideration.- Types of consent :*Implied consent is a controversial form of consent which is not expressly granted by a person, but rather inferred from a person's actions and the facts and...

. The act may be carried out by physical force, coercion
Coercion
Coercion is the practice of forcing another party to behave in an involuntary manner by use of threats or intimidation or some other form of pressure or force. In law, coercion is codified as the duress crime. Such actions are used as leverage, to force the victim to act in the desired way...

, abuse of authority or with a person who is incapable of valid consent. The term is most often defined in criminal law
Criminal law
Criminal law, is the body of law that relates to crime. It might be defined as the body of rules that defines conduct that is not allowed because it is held to threaten, harm or endanger the safety and welfare of people, and that sets out the punishment to be imposed on people who do not obey...

. A person who commits an act of rape is known as a rapist.

Internationally, the incidence of rapes recorded by the police during 2008 varied between 0.1 in Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

 per 100,000 people and 91.6 per 100,000 people in Lesotho
Lesotho
Lesotho , officially the Kingdom of Lesotho, is a landlocked country and enclave, surrounded by the Republic of South Africa. It is just over in size with a population of approximately 2,067,000. Its capital and largest city is Maseru. Lesotho is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations. The name...

 with 4.9 per 100,000 people in Lithuania
Lithuania
Lithuania , officially the Republic of Lithuania is a country in Northern Europe, the biggest of the three Baltic states. It is situated along the southeastern shore of the Baltic Sea, whereby to the west lie Sweden and Denmark...

 as the median.
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Encyclopedia
Rape is a type of sexual assault
Sexual assault
Sexual assault is an assault of a sexual nature on another person, or any sexual act committed without consent. Although sexual assaults most frequently are by a man on a woman, it may involve any combination of two or more men, women and children....

 usually involving sexual intercourse
Sexual intercourse
Sexual intercourse, also known as copulation or coitus, commonly refers to the act in which a male's penis enters a female's vagina for the purposes of sexual pleasure or reproduction. The entities may be of opposite sexes, or they may be hermaphroditic, as is the case with snails...

, which is initiated by one or more persons against another person without that person's consent
Consent
Consent refers to the provision of approval or agreement, particularly and especially after thoughtful consideration.- Types of consent :*Implied consent is a controversial form of consent which is not expressly granted by a person, but rather inferred from a person's actions and the facts and...

. The act may be carried out by physical force, coercion
Coercion
Coercion is the practice of forcing another party to behave in an involuntary manner by use of threats or intimidation or some other form of pressure or force. In law, coercion is codified as the duress crime. Such actions are used as leverage, to force the victim to act in the desired way...

, abuse of authority or with a person who is incapable of valid consent. The term is most often defined in criminal law
Criminal law
Criminal law, is the body of law that relates to crime. It might be defined as the body of rules that defines conduct that is not allowed because it is held to threaten, harm or endanger the safety and welfare of people, and that sets out the punishment to be imposed on people who do not obey...

. A person who commits an act of rape is known as a rapist.

Internationally, the incidence of rapes recorded by the police during 2008 varied between 0.1 in Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

 per 100,000 people and 91.6 per 100,000 people in Lesotho
Lesotho
Lesotho , officially the Kingdom of Lesotho, is a landlocked country and enclave, surrounded by the Republic of South Africa. It is just over in size with a population of approximately 2,067,000. Its capital and largest city is Maseru. Lesotho is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations. The name...

 with 4.9 per 100,000 people in Lithuania
Lithuania
Lithuania , officially the Republic of Lithuania is a country in Northern Europe, the biggest of the three Baltic states. It is situated along the southeastern shore of the Baltic Sea, whereby to the west lie Sweden and Denmark...

 as the median. According to the American Medical Association
American Medical Association
The American Medical Association , founded in 1847 and incorporated in 1897, is the largest association of medical doctors and medical students in the United States.-Scope and operations:...

 (1995), sexual violence, and rape in particular, is considered the most under-reported violent crime. The rate of reporting, prosecution and convictions for rape varies considerably in different jurisdictions. The U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics (1999) estimated that 91% of U.S. rape victims are female and 9% are male, with 99% of the offenders being male. Rape by strangers is usually less common than rape by persons the victim knows, and several studies argue that male-male and female-female prison rape
Prison rape
Prison rape commonly refers to the rape of inmates in prison by other inmates or prison staff.In 2001, Human Rights Watch estimated that at least 140,000 inmates had been raped while incarcerated. and there is a significant variation in the rates of prison rape by race...

 are quite common and may be the least reported forms of rape.

When part of a widespread and systematic practice, rape and sexual slavery
Sexual slavery
Sexual slavery is when unwilling people are coerced into slavery for sexual exploitation. The incidence of sexual slavery by country has been studied and tabulated by UNESCO, with the cooperation of various international agencies...

 are recognized as crimes against humanity and war crime
War crime
War crimes are serious violations of the laws applicable in armed conflict giving rise to individual criminal responsibility...

s. Rape is also recognized as an element of the crime of genocide
Genocide
Genocide is defined as "the deliberate and systematic destruction, in whole or in part, of an ethnic, racial, religious, or national group", though what constitutes enough of a "part" to qualify as genocide has been subject to much debate by legal scholars...

 when committed with the intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a targeted ethnic group.

Definitions



The definition of rape varies both in different parts of the world and at different times in history. It is defined in many jurisdictions as sexual intercourse
Sexual intercourse
Sexual intercourse, also known as copulation or coitus, commonly refers to the act in which a male's penis enters a female's vagina for the purposes of sexual pleasure or reproduction. The entities may be of opposite sexes, or they may be hermaphroditic, as is the case with snails...

, or other forms of sexual penetration, of one person by another person without the consent
Consent
Consent refers to the provision of approval or agreement, particularly and especially after thoughtful consideration.- Types of consent :*Implied consent is a controversial form of consent which is not expressly granted by a person, but rather inferred from a person's actions and the facts and...

 of the victim. The United Nations
United Nations
The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

 defines it as "sexual intercourse without valid consent," and the World Health Organization
World Health Organization
The World Health Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations that acts as a coordinating authority on international public health. Established on 7 April 1948, with headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, the agency inherited the mandate and resources of its predecessor, the Health...

 defined it in 2002 as "physically forced or otherwise coerced penetration – even if slight – of the vulva or anus, using a penis, other body parts or an object." Some countries such as Germany are now, however, using more inclusive definitions which do not require penetration and the 1998 International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda
International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda
The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda is an international court established in November 1994 by the United Nations Security Council in Resolution 955 in order to judge people responsible for the Rwandan Genocide and other serious violations of international law in Rwanda, or by Rwandan...

 defines it as "a physical invasion of a sexual nature committed on a person under circumstances which are coercive". In some jurisdictions, the term "rape" has been phased out of legal use in favor of terms such as "sexual assault" or "criminal sexual conduct".

Some jurisdictions continue to define rape to cover only acts involving penile
Penis
The penis is a biological feature of male animals including both vertebrates and invertebrates...

 penetration of the vagina
Vagina
The vagina is a fibromuscular tubular tract leading from the uterus to the exterior of the body in female placental mammals and marsupials, or to the cloaca in female birds, monotremes, and some reptiles. Female insects and other invertebrates also have a vagina, which is the terminal part of the...

, treating all other types of non-consensual sexual activity as sexual assault
Sexual assault
Sexual assault is an assault of a sexual nature on another person, or any sexual act committed without consent. Although sexual assaults most frequently are by a man on a woman, it may involve any combination of two or more men, women and children....

. In Brazil, for example, the legal code defines rape as non-consensual vaginal sex. Thus male rape, anal rape
Anal sex
Anal sex is the sex act in which the penis is inserted into the anus of a sexual partner. The term can also include other sexual acts involving the anus, including pegging, anilingus , fingering, and object insertion.Common misconception describes anal sex as practiced almost exclusively by gay men...

, and oral rape
Oral sex
Oral sex is sexual activity involving the stimulation of the genitalia of a sex partner by the use of the mouth, tongue, teeth or throat. Cunnilingus refers to oral sex performed on females while fellatio refer to oral sex performed on males. Anilingus refers to oral stimulation of a person's anus...

 are not included. The FBI
Federal Bureau of Investigation
The Federal Bureau of Investigation is an agency of the United States Department of Justice that serves as both a federal criminal investigative body and an internal intelligence agency . The FBI has investigative jurisdiction over violations of more than 200 categories of federal crime...

 uses the following definition of rape in compiling their annual Uniform Crime Reports
Uniform Crime Reports
The Uniform Crime Reports are published by the United States Department of Justice Federal Bureau of Investigation Uniform Crime Reporting Program...

: "The carnal knowledge of a female forcibly and against her will." This has been interpreted to mean only forced penile-vaginal penetration.

Consent


In any allegation of rape, the absence of consent to sexual intercourse on the part of the victim is critical. Consent need not be expressed, and may be implied from the context and from the relationship of the parties, but the absence of objection does not of itself constitute consent. Lack of consent may result from either forcible compulsion by the perpetrator or an incapacity to consent on the part of the victim (such as persons who are asleep, intoxicated or otherwise mentally helpless). The law can also invalidate consent in the case of sexual intercourse with a person below the age at which they can legally consent to such relations with older persons. (See age of consent
Age of consent
While the phrase age of consent typically does not appear in legal statutes, when used in relation to sexual activity, the age of consent is the minimum age at which a person is considered to be legally competent to consent to sexual acts. The European Union calls it the legal age for sexual...

.) Such cases are sometimes called statutory rape
Statutory rape
The phrase statutory rape is a term used in some legal jurisdictions to describe sexual activities where one participant is below the age required to legally consent to the behavior...

 or "unlawful sexual intercourse", regardless of whether it was consensual
Informed consent
Informed consent is a phrase often used in law to indicate that the consent a person gives meets certain minimum standards. As a literal matter, in the absence of fraud, it is redundant. An informed consent can be said to have been given based upon a clear appreciation and understanding of the...

 or not, as people who are under a certain age in relation to the perpetrator are deemed legally incapable of consenting to sex. Consent can always be withdrawn at any time, so that any further sexual activity after the withdrawal of consent constitutes rape.

Duress
Duress
In jurisprudence, duress or coercion refers to a situation whereby a person performs an act as a result of violence, threat or other pressure against the person. Black's Law Dictionary defines duress as "any unlawful threat or coercion used... to induce another to act [or not act] in a manner...

, in which the victim may be subject to or threatened by overwhelming force or violence, and which may result in absence of objection to intercourse, leads to the presumption of lack of consent. Duress may be actual or threatened force or violence against the victim or somebody else close to the victim. Even blackmail
Blackmail
In common usage, blackmail is a crime involving threats to reveal substantially true or false information about a person to the public, a family member, or associates unless a demand is met. It may be defined as coercion involving threats of physical harm, threat of criminal prosecution, or threats...

 may constitute duress. Abuse of power
Abuse of Power
Abuse of Power is a novel written by radio talk show host Michael Savage.- Plot :Jack Hatfield is a hardened former war correspondent who rose to national prominence for his insightful, provocative commentary...

 may constitute duress. For instance, in Philippines, a man commits rape if he engages in sexual intercourse with a woman "By means of fraudulent machination or grave abuse of authority". The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda
International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda
The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda is an international court established in November 1994 by the United Nations Security Council in Resolution 955 in order to judge people responsible for the Rwandan Genocide and other serious violations of international law in Rwanda, or by Rwandan...

 in its landmark 1998 judgment used a definition of rape which did not use the word 'consent': "a physical invasion of a sexual nature committed on a person under circumstances which are coercive."

Marital rape, also known as spousal rape, is non-consensual sex in which the perpetrator is the victim's spouse. As such, it is a form of partner rape
Sexual violence by intimate partners
Sexual violence by intimate partners varies by country and can reach as high as 25% of the women having been subject to forced sex. In some countries forced sex, or marital rape, often occurs with other forms of domestic violence, particularly physical abuse.-Domestic violence and sexual abuse:In...

, of domestic violence
Domestic violence
Domestic violence, also known as domestic abuse, spousal abuse, battering, family violence, and intimate partner violence , is broadly defined as a pattern of abusive behaviors by one or both partners in an intimate relationship such as marriage, dating, family, or cohabitation...

, and of sexual abuse. Historically, and still in some countries, consent was assumed within the marriage contract, thus making spousal rape an impossibility; however, spousal rape is now repudiated by international conventions and increasingly criminalized. In 2006, it was estimated that marital rape could be prosecuted in at least 104 countries (in four of these countries, marital rape could be prosecuted only when the spouses were judicially separated), and since 2006 several other countries have outlawed spousal rape. In the US, spousal rape is illegal in all 50 states; the first state to outlaw it was South Dakota
South Dakota
South Dakota is a state located in the Midwestern region of the United States. It is named after the Lakota and Dakota Sioux American Indian tribes. Once a part of Dakota Territory, South Dakota became a state on November 2, 1889. The state has an area of and an estimated population of just over...

 in 1975, and the last North Carolina
North Carolina
North Carolina is a state located in the southeastern United States. The state borders South Carolina and Georgia to the south, Tennessee to the west and Virginia to the north. North Carolina contains 100 counties. Its capital is Raleigh, and its largest city is Charlotte...

 in 1993. Other developing countries outlawed it in the 2000s. In many countries, it is not clear if marital rape may or may not be prosecuted under ordinary rape laws. However, in the absence of a spousal rape law it may be possible to bring prosecutions for what is effectively rape by characterizing it as an assault.

Types



There are several types of rape, generally categorized by reference to the situation in which it occurs, the sex or characteristics of the victim, and/or the sex or characteristics of the perpetrator. Different types of rape include but are not limited to: date rape
Date rape
"Date rape", often referred to as acquaintance rape, is an assault or attempted assault usually committed by a new acquaintance involving sexual intercourse without mutual consent....

, gang rape, marital rape or marital rape, incestual rape
Incest
Incest is sexual intercourse between close relatives that is usually illegal in the jurisdiction where it takes place and/or is conventionally considered a taboo. The term may apply to sexual activities between: individuals of close "blood relationship"; members of the same household; step...

, child sexual abuse
Child sexual abuse
Child sexual abuse is a form of child abuse in which an adult or older adolescent uses a child for sexual stimulation. Forms of child sexual abuse include asking or pressuring a child to engage in sexual activities , indecent exposure with intent to gratify their own sexual desires or to...

, prison rape
Prison rape
Prison rape commonly refers to the rape of inmates in prison by other inmates or prison staff.In 2001, Human Rights Watch estimated that at least 140,000 inmates had been raped while incarcerated. and there is a significant variation in the rates of prison rape by race...

, acquaintance rape, war rape
War rape
War rapes are rapes committed by soldiers, other combatants or civilians during armed conflict or war, or during military occupation, distinguished from sexual assaults and rape committed amongst troops in military service...

 and statutory rape
Statutory rape
The phrase statutory rape is a term used in some legal jurisdictions to describe sexual activities where one participant is below the age required to legally consent to the behavior...

.

Causes and motivation



There is no single theory that conclusively explains the motivation for rape; the motives of rapists can be multi-factorial and are subject to debate. Several factors have been proposed: anger
Anger
Anger is an automatic response to ill treatment. It is the way a person indicates he or she will not tolerate certain types of behaviour. It is a feedback mechanism in which an unpleasant stimulus is met with an unpleasant response....

, a desire for power, sadism, sexual gratification, and evolutionary pressures
Sociobiological theories of rape
Sociobiological theories of rape are theories that explore to what degree, if any, evolutionary adaptations influence the psychology of rapists. Such theories are highly controversial, as traditional theories typically do not consider rape to be a behavioral adaptation. Some object to such theories...

.

Effects



Victims of rape can be severely traumatized
Psychological trauma
Psychological trauma is a type of damage to the psyche that occurs as a result of a traumatic event...

 by the assault and may have difficulty functioning as well as they had been used to prior to the assault, with disruption of concentration, sleeping patterns and eating habits, for example. They may feel jumpy or be on edge. After being raped, it is common for the victim to experience acute stress disorder
Acute stress reaction
Acute stress reaction is a psychological condition arising in response to a terrifying or traumatic event...

, including symptoms similar to those of posttraumatic stress disorder, such as intense, sometimes unpredictable emotions, and they may find it hard to deal with their memories of the event. In the months immediately following the assault, these problems may be severe and upsetting and may prevent the victim from revealing their ordeal to friends or family
Family
In human context, a family is a group of people affiliated by consanguinity, affinity, or co-residence. In most societies it is the principal institution for the socialization of children...

, or seeking police or medical assistance. Additional symptoms of Acute Stress Disorder include:
  • depersonalization
    Depersonalization
    Depersonalization is an anomaly of the mechanism by which an individual has self-awareness. It is a feeling of watching oneself act, while having no control over a situation. Sufferers feel they have changed, and the world has become less real, vague, dreamlike, or lacking in significance...

     or dissociation
    Dissociation
    Dissociation is an altered state of consciousness characterized by partial or complete disruption of the normal integration of a person’s normal conscious or psychological functioning. Dissociation is most commonly experienced as a subjective perception of one's consciousness being detached from...

     (feeling numb and detached, like being in a daze or a dream, or feeling that the world is strange and unreal)
  • difficulty remembering important parts of the assault
  • reliving the assault through repeated thoughts, memories, or nightmares
  • avoidance of things, places, thoughts, and/or feelings that remind the victim of the assault
  • anxiety or increased alertness (difficulty sleeping, concentrating, etc.)
  • avoidance of social life or place of rape


For one-third to one-half of the victims, these symptoms continue beyond the first few months and meet the conditions for the diagnosis of posttraumatic stress disorder. In general, rape and sexual assault are among the most common causes of PTSD in women.

Victim blaming



"Victim blaming" is holding the victim of a crime to be in whole or in part responsible for the crime. In the context of rape, this concept refers to the Just World Theory
Just-world phenomenon
The just world hypothesis describes a cognitive bias in which people believe that the world they live in is one in which actions have appropriate and predictable consequences. This phenomenon has been widely studied by social psychologists since Melvin J. Lerner conducted seminal work on the belief...

 and popular attitudes that certain victim behaviours (such as flirting, or wearing sexually-provocative clothing) may encourage rape. In extreme cases, victims are said to have "asked for it", simply by not behaving demurely. In most Western countries, the defense of provocation is not accepted as a mitigation for rape. A global survey of attitudes toward sexual violence by the Global Forum for Health Research
Global Forum for Health Research
The Global Forum for Health Research is an international foundation headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland established in 1997 to increase the amount of research into global health issues...

 shows that victim-blaming concepts are at least partially accepted in many countries. In some countries, victim-blaming is more common, and women who have been raped are sometimes deemed to have behaved improperly. Often, these are countries where there is a significant social divide between the freedoms and status afforded to men and women. Amy M. Buddie and Arthur G. Miller, in a review of studies of rape myths, state:

Rape victims are blamed more when they resist the attack later in the rape encounter rather than earlier (Kopper, 1996), which seems to suggest the stereotype that these women are engaging in token resistance (Malamuth & Brown, 1994; Muehlenhard & Rogers, 1998) or leading the man on because they have gone along with the sexual experience thus far. Finally, rape victims are blamed more when they are raped by an acquaintance or a date rather than by a stranger (e.g., Bell, Kuriloff, & Lottes, 1994; Bridges, 1991; Bridges & McGr ail, 1989; Check & Malamuth, 1983; Kanekar, Shaherwalla, Franco, Kunju, & Pinto, 1991; L'Armand & Pepitone, 1982; Tetreault & Barnett, 1987), which seems to evoke the stereotype that victims really want to have sex because they know their attacker and perhaps even went out on a date with him. The underlying message of this research seems to be that when certain stereotypical elements of rape are in place, rape victims are prone to being blamed.


However, they also state that "individuals may endorse rape myths and at the same time recognize the negative effects of rape."

A number of gender role
Gender role
Gender roles refer to the set of social and behavioral norms that are considered to be socially appropriate for individuals of a specific sex in the context of a specific culture, which differ widely between cultures and over time...

 stereotypes can play a role in rationalization of rape. In the case of male-on-female rape, these include the idea that power is reserved to men whereas women are meant for sex and objectified, that women want forced sex and to be pushed around, and that male sexual impulses and behaviors are uncontrollable and must be satisfied. In the case of female-on-male rape, the victim may either be perceived as weak or, in cultures where men acquire status by sexual conquest, as fortunate.

Reporting


Sexual violence, and rape in particular, is considered the most under-reported violent crime (American Medical Association, 1995). Thus, the number of reported rapes is lower than both incidence and prevalence rates (Walby and Allen, 2004).

The legal requirements for reporting rape vary by jurisdiction — each U.S. state may have different requirements while other countries may have less stringent limits.

Investigation



Since the vast majority of rapes are committed by persons known to the victim, the initiation and process of a rape investigation depends much on the victim's willingness and ability to report and describe a rape.

Biological evidence such as semen
Semen
Semen is an organic fluid, also known as seminal fluid, that may contain spermatozoa. It is secreted by the gonads and other sexual organs of male or hermaphroditic animals and can fertilize female ova...

, blood
Blood
Blood is a specialized bodily fluid in animals that delivers necessary substances such as nutrients and oxygen to the cells and transports metabolic waste products away from those same cells....

, vaginal secretions, saliva
Saliva
Saliva , referred to in various contexts as spit, spittle, drivel, drool, or slobber, is the watery substance produced in the mouths of humans and most other animals. Saliva is a component of oral fluid. In mammals, saliva is produced in and secreted from the three pairs of major salivary glands,...

, and vaginal epithelial cells (typically collected by a rape kit) may be identified and genetically typed by a crime lab
Crime Lab
A crime laboratory - often shortened to crime lab - is a scientific laboratory, using primarily forensic science for the purpose of examining evidence from criminal cases.- Lab personnel :A typical crime lab has two sets of personnel:...

. The information derived from the analysis can often help determine whether sexual contact occurred, provide information regarding the circumstances of the incident, and be compared to reference samples collected from patients and suspects.

Conviction


In the United Kingdom, figures on reported rape cases show an ongoing decline in the conviction rate, putting it at an all time low of 5.6% in 2002. The government has expressed its concern at the year-on-year increase in attrition of reported rape cases, and pledged to address this "justice gap" (Home Office, 2002a).

Prevention and treatment



As sexual violence affects all parts of society, the response to sexual violence is comprehensive. The responses can be categorized as: individual approaches, health care responses, community-based efforts and actions to prevent other forms of sexual violence.

"Recovery from sexual assault is a complicated and controversial concept."

Support groups, usually accessed by "umbrella" organizations (see List of anti-sexual assault organizations in the United States) are prevalent, including some on-line.

Statistics


A United Nations
United Nations
The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

 report compiled from government sources showed that more than 250,000 cases of rape or attempted rape were recorded by police
Police
The police is a personification of the state designated to put in practice the enforced law, protect property and reduce civil disorder in civilian matters. Their powers include the legitimized use of force...

 annually. The reported data covered 65 countries.

In 2007, 40% of the 90,427 forcible rapes reported were cleared by arrest or "exceptional means." Exceptional means refers to situations where the victim refuses to provide information or assistance necessary to obtain an arrest, the defendant dies before being arrested, or the defendant cannot be extradited from another state.

Australia


The Australian Women's Safety Survey conducted by the Bureau of Statistics in 1996 involved a random sample 6,300 women aged 18 and over. It produced incidence finding of 1.9 per cent for sexual assault in the previous 12 months. Known men accounted for over two-thirds of assailants (68%). Only 15% of the assaulted women in the sample reported to the police.

Cambodia


In Cambodia
Cambodia
Cambodia , officially known as the Kingdom of Cambodia, is a country located in the southern portion of the Indochina Peninsula in Southeast Asia...

, rape is estimated by local and international NGOs to be common, but only a very small minority of these assaults are ever reported to authorities, due to the social stigma associated to being the victim of a sexual crime, and, in particular, to losing virginity
Virginity
Virginity refers to the state of a person who has never engaged in sexual intercourse. There are cultural and religious traditions which place special value and significance on this state, especially in the case of unmarried females, associated with notions of personal purity, honor and worth...

 before marriage
Marriage
Marriage is a social union or legal contract between people that creates kinship. It is an institution in which interpersonal relationships, usually intimate and sexual, are acknowledged in a variety of ways, depending on the culture or subculture in which it is found...

 (regardless of how this happened). From November 2008 to November 2009, police had recorded 468 cases of rape, attempted rape and sexual harassment, a 2.4 percent increase over the previous year. Breaking the Silence – Sexual Violence in Cambodia is a report produced by Amnesty International
Amnesty International
Amnesty International is an international non-governmental organisation whose stated mission is "to conduct research and generate action to prevent and end grave abuses of human rights, and to demand justice for those whose rights have been violated."Following a publication of Peter Benenson's...

, and released in 2010, which examined the situation of sexual violence in Cambodia. The report found that, in the small minority of rapes which are reported, a very common response is for law-enforcement officials, including
police and court staff, to arrange extralegal out-of-court 'agreements' between the victim and the perpetrator (or their families), in which the rapist pays a sum of money which is shared between the authorities and the victim (and her family), after which the victim has to withdraw any criminal complaint against the perpetrator, and public prosecutors close the case. When a rape is investigated, a complainant is generally expected to pay an extralegal sum of money to the authorities, to ensure that the court investigates the case, otherwise progress is slow, and it may take over two years for anything to happen. During the pre-trial period, there is always a risk that the perpetrator’s family will pay a bribe to secure his acquittal or reduced charge.

Canada



The most frequently cited research was conducted by Statistics Canada
Statistics Canada
Statistics Canada is the Canadian federal government agency commissioned with producing statistics to help better understand Canada, its population, resources, economy, society, and culture. Its headquarters is in Ottawa....

 in 1992, which involved a national random sample of 12,300 women (Johnson and Sacco, 1995). The research found that over one in three women had experienced a sexual assault and that only 6% of sexual assaults were reported to the police.

Democratic Republic of the Congo



In eastern Congo, the prevalence and intensity of rape and other sexual violence is described as the worst in the world. It is estimated that there are as many as 200,000 surviving rape victims living in the Democratic Republic of the Congo today. A new study says more than 400,000 women are raped in the Democratic Republic of Congo annually. War rape in the Democratic Republic of Congo has frequently been described as a "weapon of war" by commentators. Louise Nzigire, a local social worker, states that “this violence was designed to exterminate the population.” Nzigire observes that rape has been a "cheap, simple weapon for all parties in the war, more easily obtainable than bullets or bombs."

South Africa



South Africa has some of the highest incidences of child and baby rape
Child sexual abuse
Child sexual abuse is a form of child abuse in which an adult or older adolescent uses a child for sexual stimulation. Forms of child sexual abuse include asking or pressuring a child to engage in sexual activities , indecent exposure with intent to gratify their own sexual desires or to...

 in the world with more than 67,000 cases of rape and sexual assaults against children reported in 2000, with welfare groups believing that unreported incidents could be up to 10 times higher. In 2001, a 9-month-old was raped and likely lost consciousness as the pain was too much to bear. Another 9-month-old baby was raped by six men, aged between 24 and 66, after the infant had been left unattended by her teenage mother. A 4-year-old girl died after being raped by her father. A 14-month-old girl was raped by her two uncles. In February 2002, an 8-month-old infant was reportedly gang raped by four men. One has been charged. The infant has required extensive reconstructive surgery. The 8-month-old infant's injuries were so extensive, increased attention on prosecution has occurred. A significant contributing factor for the escalation in child abuse is the widespread myth in HIV
HIV
Human immunodeficiency virus is a lentivirus that causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome , a condition in humans in which progressive failure of the immune system allows life-threatening opportunistic infections and cancers to thrive...

 ravaged South Africa that having sex with a virgin will cure a man of AIDS
AIDS
Acquired immune deficiency syndrome or acquired immunodeficiency syndrome is a disease of the human immune system caused by the human immunodeficiency virus...

.

One in three of the 4,000 women questioned by the Community of Information, Empowerment and Transparency said they had been raped in the past year. More than 25% of South African men questioned in a survey admitted to raping someone; of those, nearly half said they had raped more than one person, according to a new study conducted by the Medical Research Council (MRC). A 2010 study led by the government-funded Medical Research Foundation says that in Gauteng province, more than 37 percent of men said they had raped a woman. Nearly 7 percent of the 487 men surveyed said they had participated in a gang rape. Among children, a survey found 11% of boys and 4% of girls admitted to forcing someone else to have sex with them while in another survey among 1,500 schoolchildren in the Soweto
Soweto
Soweto is a lower-class-populated urban area of the city of Johannesburg in Gauteng, South Africa, bordering the city's mining belt in the south. Its name is an English syllabic abbreviation for South Western Townships...

 township
Township
The word township is used to refer to different kinds of settlements in different countries. Township is generally associated with an urban area. However there are many exceptions to this rule. In Australia, the United States, and Canada, they may be settlements too small to be considered urban...

, a quarter of all the boys interviewed said that 'jackrolling', a term for gang rape, was fun.

United Kingdom



According to a news report on BBC One
BBC One
BBC One is the flagship television channel of the British Broadcasting Corporation in the United Kingdom. It was launched on 2 November 1936 as the BBC Television Service, and was the world's first regular television service with a high level of image resolution...

 presented in 12 November 2007, there were 85,000 women raped in the UK in the previous year, equating to about 230 cases every day. According to that report one of every 200 women in the UK were raped in 2006. The report also showed that only 800 persons were convicted in rape crimes that same year.

United States



U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics (1999) estimated that 91% of rape victims are female and 9% are male, with 99% of the offenders being male. Some types of rape are excluded from official reports altogether, (the FBI's definition for example excludes all rapes except forcible rapes of females), because a significant number of rapes go unreported even when they are included as reportable rapes, and also because a significant number of rapes reported to the police do not advance to prosecution. According to United States Department of Justice
United States Department of Justice
The United States Department of Justice , is the United States federal executive department responsible for the enforcement of the law and administration of justice, equivalent to the justice or interior ministries of other countries.The Department is led by the Attorney General, who is nominated...

 document Criminal Victimization in the United States, there were overall 191,670 victims of rape or sexual assault reported in 2005. Only 16% of rapes and sexual assaults are reported to the police (Rape in America: A Report to the Nation. 1992 and United Nations Populations Fund, 2000a). Factoring in unreported rapes, about 5% of rapists will ever spend a day in jail. One of six U.S. women has experienced an attempted or completed rape. More than a quarter of college age women report having experienced a rape or rape attempt since age 14.

The U.S. Department of Justice compiles statistics on crime by race, but only between and among people categorized as black or white. The Uniform Crime Reports
Uniform Crime Reports
The Uniform Crime Reports are published by the United States Department of Justice Federal Bureau of Investigation Uniform Crime Reporting Program...

 classifies most Hispanics into the "white" category. There were 194,270 white and 17,920 black victims of rape or sexual assault
Sexual assault
Sexual assault is an assault of a sexual nature on another person, or any sexual act committed without consent. Although sexual assaults most frequently are by a man on a woman, it may involve any combination of two or more men, women and children....

 reported in 2006. According to Anthony Walsh, "Gary LaFree
Gary LaFree
Gary LaFree is a professor of criminology and criminal justice at the University of Maryland and the director of the National Center for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism . His main areas of expertise are sociology, criminology, race and crime, and terrorism.-Education:LaFree...

's rape data for the 45-year period revealed that blacks were arrested for rape an average of 6.52 times more often than whites."

Drug use, especially alcohol, is frequently involved in rape. A study (only of rape victims that were female and reachable by phone) reported detailed findings related to tactics. In 47% of such rapes, both the victim and the perpetrator had been drinking. In 17%, only the perpetrator had been. 7% of the time, only the victim had been drinking. Rapes where neither the victim nor the perpetrator had been drinking were 29% of all rapes. Contrary to widespread belief, rape outdoors is rare. Over two thirds of all rapes occur in someone's home. 31% occur in the perpetrators' homes, 27% in the victims' homes and 10% in homes shared by the victim and perpetrator. 7% occur at parties, 7% in vehicles, 4% outdoors and 2% in bars. From 2000–2005, 59% of rapes were not reported to law enforcement. One factor relating to this is the misconception that most rapes are committed by strangers. In reality, studies indicate the following varying numbers:
Source: Current or Former Intimate Partner Another Relative Friend or Acquaintance Stranger
US Bureau of Justice Statistics 26% 7% 38% 26%
Australian Government Statistics 56% 10% 27% 8%
UK Home Office (for comparison) 45.4% 13.9% 29.6% 11%

Other


Most rape research and reporting to date has been limited to male-female forms of rape. Research on male-male and female-male rape is beginning to be done. According to psychologist Dr. Sarah Crome, fewer than one in ten male-male rapes are reported. As a group, male rape victims by either gender often get little services and support, and legal systems are often ill equipped to deal with this type of crime. Denov (2004) states that societal responses to the issue of female perpetrators of sexual assault "point to a widespread denial of women as potential sexual aggressors that could work to obscure the true dimensions of the problem." Due to these reasons, it is likely being substantially under-reported, with the probable cause being the double standard. Some legal codes on rape do not legislate against women raping men, as rape is generally defined to include the act of penetration on behalf of the rapist and some legal codes do not legislate against women raping men. In 2007, the South Africa
South Africa
The Republic of South Africa is a country in southern Africa. Located at the southern tip of Africa, it is divided into nine provinces, with of coastline on the Atlantic and Indian oceans...

 police investigated instances of women raping young men. Little research has been done on female-female rape.

False accusation


The largest and most rigorous study was commissioned by the British Home Office and based on 2,643 sexual assault cases (Kelly, Lovett, and Regan, 2005). Of these, 8% were classified by the police department as false reports. However, the researchers noted that some of these classifications were based simply on the personal judgments of the police investigators and were made in violation of official criteria for establishing a false allegation. Closer analysis of this category applying the Home Office counting rules for establishing a false allegation and excluding cases where the application of the cases where confirmation of the designation was uncertain reduced the percentage of false reports to 3%. The researchers concluded that "one cannot take all police designations at face value" and that "[t]here is an over-estimation of the scale of false allegations by both police officers and prosecutors." Moreover, they added:
Another large-scale study was conducted in Australia, with the 850 rapes reported to the Victoria police between 2000 and 2003 (Heenan & Murray, 2006). Using both quantitative and qualitative methods, the researchers examined 812 cases with sufficient information to make an appropriate determination, and found that 2.1% of these were classified by police as false reports. All of these complainants were then charged or threatened with charges for filing a false police report.

FBI reports consistently put the number of "unfounded" rape accusations around 8%. The unfounded rate is higher for forcible rape than for any other Index crime. The average rate of unfounded reports for Index crimes is 2%. However, “unfounded” is not synonymous with false allegation and as Bruce Gross of the Forensic Examiner explains,
It is most commonly reported that around 2% of reported rape cases are false accusations. In an academic review in the Loyola of Los Angeles Law Review, Edward Greer could not find primary sources for this often repeated figure. A 2006 review by Philip Rumney in the Cambridge Law Journal found several that supported that the figure is around 2%, but only one small (545-case) study that could be a source of the 2% figure, and expressed doubt about each's methodology.

Purdue sociologist Eugene Kanin (1994) summarized rape reports in a small Midwestern town between 1978 and 1987 and found that the police department determined 41% of the 109 sexual assault reports to be false. The police department made a "serious offer to polygraph" all rape complainants. David Lisak
David Lisak
David Lisak is an American clinical psychologist. He received his PhD from Duke University, and currently teaches at the University of Massachusetts Boston...

 (2007) argues that Kanin’s is not a research study, because it only puts forth the opinions of the police officers without any further investigation on his part and that it is "a provocative opinion piece, but it is not a scientific study of the issue of false reporting of rape" and that it "certainly should never be used to assert a scientific foundation for the frequency of false allegations." Similarly, John Bancroft states that a search of the literature on false rape reports reveals that Kanin's figure of 41% false rape reports is regarded as unusually high. Kanin claimed that "the complainant must admit that no rape had occurred. She is the sole agent who can say that the rape charge is false." Lisak accused Kanin of presenting the claims of the police department as fact, without investigating further:
Lisak later performed his own study, published in 2010 in Violence Against Women, which found a false allegation rate of 5.9%.

History


In ancient history
Ancient history
Ancient history is the study of the written past from the beginning of recorded human history to the Early Middle Ages. The span of recorded history is roughly 5,000 years, with Cuneiform script, the oldest discovered form of coherent writing, from the protoliterate period around the 30th century BC...

, rape was viewed less as a type of assault on the female, than a serious property crime against the man to whom she belonged, typically the father or husband. The loss of virginity
Virginity
Virginity refers to the state of a person who has never engaged in sexual intercourse. There are cultural and religious traditions which place special value and significance on this state, especially in the case of unmarried females, associated with notions of personal purity, honor and worth...

 was an especially serious matter. The damage due to loss of virginity was reflected in her reduced prospects in finding a husband and in her bride price
Bride price
Bride price, also known as bride wealth, is an amount of money or property or wealth paid by the groom or his family to the parents of a woman upon the marriage of their daughter to the groom...

. This was especially true in the case of betrothed virgins, as the loss of chastity
Chastity
Chastity refers to the sexual behavior of a man or woman acceptable to the moral standards and guidelines of a culture, civilization, or religion....

 was perceived as severely depreciating her value to a prospective husband. In such cases, the law would void the betrothal and demand financial compensation from the rapist, payable to the woman's household, whose "goods" were "damaged".
Under biblical law
Biblical law
Biblical law refers to the legal aspects of the Bible, the holy scriptures of Judaism and Christianity.-Judaism:* 613 Mitzvot, the 613 commandments contained in the Torah* Mitzvah, divine commandment, act of human kindness, a good deed...

, the rapist might be compelled to marry the unmarried woman instead of receiving the civil penalty if her father agreed. This was especially prevalent in laws where the crime of rape did not include, as a necessary element, the violation of the woman's body, thus dividing the crime in the current meaning of rape and a means for a man and woman to force their families to permit marriage
Marriage
Marriage is a social union or legal contract between people that creates kinship. It is an institution in which interpersonal relationships, usually intimate and sexual, are acknowledged in a variety of ways, depending on the culture or subculture in which it is found...

. (See .)

The word rape itself originates from the Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

 verb rapere: to seize or take by force. The word originally had no sexual connotation and is still used generically in English. The history of rape, and the alterations of its meaning, is quite complex. In Roman law
Roman law
Roman law is the legal system of ancient Rome, and the legal developments which occurred before the 7th century AD — when the Roman–Byzantine state adopted Greek as the language of government. The development of Roman law comprises more than a thousand years of jurisprudence — from the Twelve...

, rape was classified as a form of crimen vis, "crime of assault." Unlike theft or robbery, rape was termed a "public wrong" iniuria publica as opposed to a "private wrong" iniuria privita. Augustus
Augustus
Augustus ;23 September 63 BC – 19 August AD 14) is considered the first emperor of the Roman Empire, which he ruled alone from 27 BC until his death in 14 AD.The dates of his rule are contemporary dates; Augustus lived under two calendars, the Roman Republican until 45 BC, and the Julian...

 Caesar enacted reforms for the crime of rape under the assault statute Lex Iulia de vi publica, which bears his family name, Iulia. It was under this statute rather than the adultery statute of Lex Iulia de adulteriis that Rome prosecuted this crime. Emperor Justinian confirmed the continued use of the statute to prosecute rape during the 6th century in the Eastern Roman Empire.
By late antiquity
Late Antiquity
Late Antiquity is a periodization used by historians to describe the time of transition from Classical Antiquity to the Middle Ages, in both mainland Europe and the Mediterranean world. Precise boundaries for the period are a matter of debate, but noted historian of the period Peter Brown proposed...

, the general term raptus had referred to abduction, elopement, robbery, or rape in its modern meaning. Confusion over the term led ecclesial commentators on the law to differentiate it into raptus seductionis (elopement without parental consent) and raptus violentiae (ravishment). Both of these forms of raptus had a civil penalty and possible excommunication for the family and village receiving the abducted woman, although raptus violentiae also incurred punishments of mutilation or death.

From the classical antiquity of Greece
Ancient Greece
Ancient Greece is a civilization belonging to a period of Greek history that lasted from the Archaic period of the 8th to 6th centuries BC to the end of antiquity. Immediately following this period was the beginning of the Early Middle Ages and the Byzantine era. Included in Ancient Greece is the...

 and Rome
Ancient Rome
Ancient Rome was a thriving civilization that grew on the Italian Peninsula as early as the 8th century BC. Located along the Mediterranean Sea and centered on the city of Rome, it expanded to one of the largest empires in the ancient world....

 into the Colonial period
Colonial Period
Colonial Period may generally refer to any period in a country's history when it was subject to administration by a colonial power.*Korea under Japanese rule*Colonial history of the United States...

, rape along with arson
Arson
Arson is the crime of intentionally or maliciously setting fire to structures or wildland areas. It may be distinguished from other causes such as spontaneous combustion and natural wildfires...

, treason
Treason
In law, treason is the crime that covers some of the more extreme acts against one's sovereign or nation. Historically, treason also covered the murder of specific social superiors, such as the murder of a husband by his wife. Treason against the king was known as high treason and treason against a...

 and murder
Murder
Murder is the unlawful killing, with malice aforethought, of another human being, and generally this state of mind distinguishes murder from other forms of unlawful homicide...

 was a capital offense. "Those committing rape were subject to a wide range of capital punishments that were seemingly brutal, frequently bloody, and at times spectacular." In the 12th century, kinsmen of the victim were given the option of executing the punishment themselves. "In England
England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

 in the early fourteenth century, a victim of rape might be expected to gouge out the eyes and/or sever the offender's testicles herself."

The ius primae noctis ("law of the first night") is a term now popularly used to describe an alleged legal right allowing the lord of an estate to take the virginity
Virginity
Virginity refers to the state of a person who has never engaged in sexual intercourse. There are cultural and religious traditions which place special value and significance on this state, especially in the case of unmarried females, associated with notions of personal purity, honor and worth...

 of his serf
SERF
A spin exchange relaxation-free magnetometer is a type of magnetometer developed at Princeton University in the early 2000s. SERF magnetometers measure magnetic fields by using lasers to detect the interaction between alkali metal atoms in a vapor and the magnetic field.The name for the technique...

s' maiden daughters. Little or no historical evidence has been unearthed from the Middle Ages to support the idea that such a right ever actually existed.

The medieval theologian Thomas Aquinas
Thomas Aquinas
Thomas Aquinas, O.P. , also Thomas of Aquin or Aquino, was an Italian Dominican priest of the Catholic Church, and an immensely influential philosopher and theologian in the tradition of scholasticism, known as Doctor Angelicus, Doctor Communis, or Doctor Universalis...

 argued that rape, though sinful, was much less unacceptable than masturbation
Masturbation
Masturbation refers to sexual stimulation of a person's own genitals, usually to the point of orgasm. The stimulation can be performed manually, by use of objects or tools, or by some combination of these methods. Masturbation is a common form of autoeroticism...

 or coitus interruptus
Coitus interruptus
Coitus interruptus, also known as the rejected sexual intercourse, withdrawal or pull-out method, is a method of birth-control in which a man, during intercourse withdraws his penis from a woman's vagina prior to ejaculation...

, because it fulfilled the procreative function of sex, while the other acts violated the purpose of sex.

During the Colonization of the Americas, the rape of native women was not held to be a crime under Spanish Law as the persons in question were Pagan and not Christian.

Until fairly recently, the criminal justice system of many countries was widely regarded as unfair to sexual assault victims. Both sexist stereotypes and common law combined to make rape a "criminal proceeding on which the victim and her behavior were tried rather than the defendant". Additionally, gender neutral laws have combated the older perception that rape never occurs to men, while other laws have eliminated the term altogether.

Since the 1970s, many changes have occurred in the perception of sexual assault due in large part to the feminist movement
Feminist movement
The feminist movement refers to a series of campaigns for reforms on issues such as reproductive rights, domestic violence, maternity leave, equal pay, women's suffrage, sexual harassment and sexual violence...

 and its public characterization of rape as a crime of power and control rather than purely of sex. In some countries the women's liberation movement of the 1970s created the first rape crisis centers. One of the first two rape crisis centers, the D.C. Rape Crisis Center, opened in 1972. It was created to promote sensitivity and understanding of rape and its effects on the victim. In 1960 law enforcement cited false reporting rates at 20%. By 1973 the statistics had dropped to 15%.

War rape


In 1998, Judge Navanethem Pillay of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda
International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda
The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda is an international court established in November 1994 by the United Nations Security Council in Resolution 955 in order to judge people responsible for the Rwandan Genocide and other serious violations of international law in Rwanda, or by Rwandan...

 said:
From time immemorial, rape has been regarded as spoils of war
Spoils of War
Botín de guerra is a 2000 Argentine documentary film directed and written by David Blaustein with Luis Alberto Asurey. The film premiered on 11 April 2000 in Buenos Aires...

. Now it will be considered a war crime. We want to send out a strong message that rape is no longer a trophy of war.

Rape, in the course of war
War
War is a state of organized, armed, and often prolonged conflict carried on between states, nations, or other parties typified by extreme aggression, social disruption, and usually high mortality. War should be understood as an actual, intentional and widespread armed conflict between political...

, dates back to antiquity, ancient enough to have been mentioned in the Bible
Bible
The Bible refers to any one of the collections of the primary religious texts of Judaism and Christianity. There is no common version of the Bible, as the individual books , their contents and their order vary among denominations...

. The Israelite, Persian, Greek
Ancient Greece
Ancient Greece is a civilization belonging to a period of Greek history that lasted from the Archaic period of the 8th to 6th centuries BC to the end of antiquity. Immediately following this period was the beginning of the Early Middle Ages and the Byzantine era. Included in Ancient Greece is the...

 and Roman
Ancient Rome
Ancient Rome was a thriving civilization that grew on the Italian Peninsula as early as the 8th century BC. Located along the Mediterranean Sea and centered on the city of Rome, it expanded to one of the largest empires in the ancient world....

 armies reportedly engaged in war rape. The Mongols
Mongols
Mongols ) are a Central-East Asian ethnic group that lives mainly in the countries of Mongolia, China, and Russia. In China, ethnic Mongols can be found mainly in the central north region of China such as Inner Mongolia...

, who established the Mongol Empire
Mongol Empire
The Mongol Empire , initially named as Greater Mongol State was a great empire during the 13th and 14th centuries...

 across much of Eurasia
Eurasia
Eurasia is a continent or supercontinent comprising the traditional continents of Europe and Asia ; covering about 52,990,000 km2 or about 10.6% of the Earth's surface located primarily in the eastern and northern hemispheres...

, caused much destruction
Destruction under the Mongol Empire
Destruction under the Mongol Empire refers to widespread loss of life and devastation caused by the Mongolian conquests of the 13th century.Mongol raids and invasions were generally regarded as some of the deadliest in human history...

 during their invasions. Documents written during or after Genghis Khan
Genghis Khan
Genghis Khan , born Temujin and occasionally known by his temple name Taizu , was the founder and Great Khan of the Mongol Empire, which became the largest contiguous empire in history after his death....

's reign say that after a conquest, the Mongol soldiers looted, pillaged and raped. Rogerius, a monk who survived the Mongol invasion of Hungary, pointed out not only the genocidal element of the occupation, but also that the Mongols especially "found pleasure" in humiliating women.

The systematic rape of as many as 80,000 women by the Japanese soldiers during the six weeks of the Nanking Massacre
Nanking Massacre
The Nanking Massacre or Nanjing Massacre, also known as the Rape of Nanking, was a mass murder, genocide and war rape that occurred during the six-week period following the Japanese capture of the city of Nanjing , the former capital of the Republic of China, on December 13, 1937 during the Second...

 is an example of such atrocities. During World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

 an estimated 200,000 Korean
Korean people
The Korean people are an ethnic group originating in the Korean peninsula and Manchuria. Koreans are one of the most ethnically and linguistically homogeneous groups in the world.-Names:...

 and Chinese
Chinese people
The term Chinese people may refer to any of the following:*People with Han Chinese ethnicity ....

 women were forced into prostitution in Japanese
Empire of Japan
The Empire of Japan is the name of the state of Japan that existed from the Meiji Restoration on 3 January 1868 to the enactment of the post-World War II Constitution of...

 military brothels, as so-called "Comfort women
Comfort women
The term "comfort women" was a euphemism used to describe women forced into sexual slavery by the Japanese military during World War II.Estimates vary as to how many women were involved, with numbers ranging from as low as 20,000 from some Japanese scholars to as high as 410,000 from some Chinese...

". French Moroccan troops known as Goumier
Goumier
Moroccan Goumiers were soldiers who served in auxiliary units attached to the French Army of Africa, between 1908 and 1956. The term Goumier was also occasionally used to designate native soldiers in the French army of the French Sudan and Upper Volta during the colonial era.-Description:The word...

s committed rapes and other war crimes after the Battle of Monte Cassino
Battle of Monte Cassino
The Battle of Monte Cassino was a costly series of four battles during World War II, fought by the Allies against Germans and Italians with the intention of breaking through the Winter Line and seizing Rome.In the beginning of 1944, the western half of the Winter Line was being anchored by Germans...

. (See Marocchinate
Marocchinate
Marocchinate is a term applied to the mass rape and killings committed during World War II after the Battle of Monte Cassino in Italy by Goumiers, Moroccan colonial troops of the French Expeditionary Corps ), commanded by General Alphonse Juin.- Background :Goumiers were colonial irregular...

.)
Rape by soldiers was common in many areas occupied by the Red Army.

It has been alleged that an estimated 200,000 women were raped during the Bangladesh Liberation War by the Pakistani army (though this has been disputed by many including the Indian academic Sarmila Bose ), and that at least 20,000 Bosnian Muslim women were raped by Serb forces during the Bosnian War
Bosnian War
The Bosnian War or the War in Bosnia and Herzegovina was an international armed conflict that took place in Bosnia and Herzegovina between April 1992 and December 1995. The war involved several sides...

.
Wartime propaganda often alleges, and exaggerates, mistreatment of the civilian population by enemy forces and allegations of rape figure prominently in this. As a result, it is often very difficult, both practically and politically, to assemble an accurate view of what really happened.

Commenting on rape of women and children in recent African conflict zones UNICEF said that rape was no longer just perpetrated by combatants but also by civilians. According to UNICEF rape is common in countries affected by wars and natural disasters, drawing a link between the occurrence of sexual violence with the significant uprooting of a society and the crumbling of social norms. UNICEF states that in Kenya reported cases of sexual violence doubled within days of post-election conflicts. According to UNICEF rape was prevalent in conflict zones in Sudan
Sudan
Sudan , officially the Republic of the Sudan , is a country in North Africa, sometimes considered part of the Middle East politically. It is bordered by Egypt to the north, the Red Sea to the northeast, Eritrea and Ethiopia to the east, South Sudan to the south, the Central African Republic to the...

, Chad
Chad
Chad , officially known as the Republic of Chad, is a landlocked country in Central Africa. It is bordered by Libya to the north, Sudan to the east, the Central African Republic to the south, Cameroon and Nigeria to the southwest, and Niger to the west...

 and the Democratic Republic of Congo. It is estimated that more than 200,000 females living in the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Democratic Republic of the Congo
The Democratic Republic of the Congo is a state located in Central Africa. It is the second largest country in Africa by area and the eleventh largest in the world...

 today have been raped in recent conflicts. Some estimate that around 60% of combatants in Congo are HIV
HIV
Human immunodeficiency virus is a lentivirus that causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome , a condition in humans in which progressive failure of the immune system allows life-threatening opportunistic infections and cancers to thrive...

-infected.

In 1998, the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda
International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda
The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda is an international court established in November 1994 by the United Nations Security Council in Resolution 955 in order to judge people responsible for the Rwandan Genocide and other serious violations of international law in Rwanda, or by Rwandan...

 found that systematic rape was used in the Rwandan genocide
Rwandan Genocide
The Rwandan Genocide was the 1994 mass murder of an estimated 800,000 people in the small East African nation of Rwanda. Over the course of approximately 100 days through mid-July, over 500,000 people were killed, according to a Human Rights Watch estimate...

. The Tribunal held that "sexual assault [in Rwanda] formed an integral part of the process of destroying the Tutsi
Tutsi
The Tutsi , or Abatutsi, are an ethnic group in Central Africa. Historically they were often referred to as the Watussi or Watusi. They are the second largest caste in Rwanda and Burundi, the other two being the Hutu and the Twa ....

 ethnic group and that the rape was systematic and had been perpetrated against Tutsi women only, manifesting the specific intent required for those acts to constitute genocide." An estimated 500,000 women were raped during the 1994 Rwandan Genocide
Rwandan Genocide
The Rwandan Genocide was the 1994 mass murder of an estimated 800,000 people in the small East African nation of Rwanda. Over the course of approximately 100 days through mid-July, over 500,000 people were killed, according to a Human Rights Watch estimate...

.

The Rome Statute
Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court
The Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court is the treaty that established the International Criminal Court . It was adopted at a diplomatic conference in Rome on 17 July 1998 and it entered into force on 1 July 2002. As of 13 October 2011, 119 states are party to the statute...

, which defines the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court
International Criminal Court
The International Criminal Court is a permanent tribunal to prosecute individuals for genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes, and the crime of aggression .It came into being on 1 July 2002—the date its founding treaty, the Rome Statute of the...

, recognizes rape, sexual slavery, enforced prostitution
Prostitution
Prostitution is the act or practice of providing sexual services to another person in return for payment. The person who receives payment for sexual services is called a prostitute and the person who receives such services is known by a multitude of terms, including a "john". Prostitution is one of...

, forced pregnancy, enforced sterilization
Compulsory sterilization
Compulsory sterilization also known as forced sterilization programs are government policies which attempt to force people to undergo surgical sterilization...

, "or any other form of sexual violence of comparable gravity" as crime against humanity if the action is part of a widespread or systematic practice.

Rape was first recognized as crime against humanity
Crime against humanity
Crimes against humanity, as defined by the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court Explanatory Memorandum, "are particularly odious offenses in that they constitute a serious attack on human dignity or grave humiliation or a degradation of one or more human beings...

 when the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia
International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia
The International Tribunal for the Prosecution of Persons Responsible for Serious Violations of International Humanitarian Law Committed in the Territory of the Former Yugoslavia since 1991, more commonly referred to as the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia or ICTY, is a...

 issued arrest warrants based on the Geneva Conventions
Geneva Conventions
The Geneva Conventions comprise four treaties, and three additional protocols, that establish the standards of international law for the humanitarian treatment of the victims of war...

 and Violations of the Laws or Customs of War. Specifically, it was recognised that Muslim women in Foča
Foca
Foča is a town and municipality in southeastern Bosnia and Herzegovina on the Drina river, in the Foča Region of the Republika Srpska entity.-Early history:...

 (southeastern Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina , sometimes called Bosnia-Herzegovina or simply Bosnia, is a country in Southern Europe, on the Balkan Peninsula. Bordered by Croatia to the north, west and south, Serbia to the east, and Montenegro to the southeast, Bosnia and Herzegovina is almost landlocked, except for the...

) were subjected to systematic and widespread gang rape, torture and enslavement by Bosnian Serb soldiers, policemen and members of paramilitary groups after the takeover of the city in April 1992.

The indictment was of major legal significance and was the first time that sexual assaults were investigated for the purpose of prosecution under the rubric of torture and enslavement as a crime against humanity
Crime against humanity
Crimes against humanity, as defined by the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court Explanatory Memorandum, "are particularly odious offenses in that they constitute a serious attack on human dignity or grave humiliation or a degradation of one or more human beings...

. The indictment was confirmed by a 2001 verdict of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia
International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia
The International Tribunal for the Prosecution of Persons Responsible for Serious Violations of International Humanitarian Law Committed in the Territory of the Former Yugoslavia since 1991, more commonly referred to as the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia or ICTY, is a...

 that rape and sexual enslavement are crimes against humanity. Amnesty International
Amnesty International
Amnesty International is an international non-governmental organisation whose stated mission is "to conduct research and generate action to prevent and end grave abuses of human rights, and to demand justice for those whose rights have been violated."Following a publication of Peter Benenson's...

 stated that the ruling challenged the widespread acceptance of the torture of women as an intrinsic part of war.

See also


  • Anti-Rape Movement
    Anti-Rape Movement
    - Ideological Roots of the Movement :In the late 1960s and early 1970s, a new conceptualization of rape arose out of the second-wave feminist movement, which served as a foundation for the anti-rape movement to come. Within the movement, feminists began a reevaluation of women’s daily lives...

  • Comfort women
    Comfort women
    The term "comfort women" was a euphemism used to describe women forced into sexual slavery by the Japanese military during World War II.Estimates vary as to how many women were involved, with numbers ranging from as low as 20,000 from some Japanese scholars to as high as 410,000 from some Chinese...

  • Corrective rape
    Corrective rape
    Corrective rape is a criminal practice first seen in South Africa, whereby lesbian women are raped by men, sometimes under supervision by members of their families or local communities, purportedly as a means of "curing" them of their homosexuality....

  • Courtship disorder
    Courtship disorder
    Courtship disorder is a theoretical construct in sexology in which a certain set of paraphilias are seen as specific instances of anomalous courtship instincts in men. The specific paraphilias are exhibitionism, voyeurism, telephone scatologia, frotteurism, and biastophilia...

  • Criminal transmission of HIV
    Criminal transmission of HIV
    In many countries, the intentional or reckless infection of a person with the human immunodeficiency virus is considered to be a crime. This is often conflated, in laws and in discussion, with criminal exposure to HIV, which does not require the transmission of the virus and often, as in the...

  • Emergency contraception
    Emergency contraception
    Emergency contraception , or emergency postcoital contraception, refers to birth control measures that, if taken after sexual intercourse, may prevent pregnancy.Forms of EC include:...

     (the morning after pill)
  • Factors associated with being a victim of sexual violence
    Factors associated with being a victim of sexual violence
    One of the most common forms of sexual violence around the world is that which is perpetrated by an intimate partner, leading to the conclusion that one of the most important risk factors for people in terms of their vulnerability to sexual assault is being married or cohabiting with a partner...

  • Honor killing
    Honor killing
    An honor killing or honour killing is the homicide of a member of a family or social group by other members, due to the belief of the perpetrators that the victim has brought dishonor upon the family or community...

  • Special Victims Unit
    Special Victims Unit
    The Special Victims Unit is the name of a specialized division within some police departments. The detectives in this division typically investigate crimes involving sexual assault, the very young, or the very elderly, as well as any crime loosely connected with any of the three.-New York City...

     (also known as the Sex Crimes Unit)
  • Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
    Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
    Law & Order: Special Victims Unit is an American police procedural television drama series set in New York City, where it is also primarily produced...

    – Television series about a group of NYPD officers who tackle sex crimes
  • Marocchinate
    Marocchinate
    Marocchinate is a term applied to the mass rape and killings committed during World War II after the Battle of Monte Cassino in Italy by Goumiers, Moroccan colonial troops of the French Expeditionary Corps ), commanded by General Alphonse Juin.- Background :Goumiers were colonial irregular...

  • Rape by gender
    Rape by gender
    This article classifies types of rape by the sex of both the rapist and the victim. The scope of the article includes both rape and sexual violence more generally....

  • Rape culture
    Rape culture
    Rape culture is a term which originated in women's studies and feminist theory, describing a culture in which rape and sexual violence against women are common and in which prevalent attitudes, norms, practices, and media condone, normalize, excuse, or tolerate sexual violence against women...

  • Rape fantasy
    Rape fantasy
    A rape fantasy or a ravishment is a sexual fantasy involving imagining or pretending being coerced or coercing another into sexual activity. In sexual role-play it involves acting out roles of coercive sex...

  • Rape of college women
  • Rape shield law
    Rape shield law
    A rape shield law is a law that limits a defendant's ability to cross-examine rape complainants about their past sexual behaviour. The term also refers to a law that prohibits the publication of the identity of an alleged rape victim.-In Canada:...

     (shields rape victims from scrutiny)
  • Sexual violence by intimate partners
    Sexual violence by intimate partners
    Sexual violence by intimate partners varies by country and can reach as high as 25% of the women having been subject to forced sex. In some countries forced sex, or marital rape, often occurs with other forms of domestic violence, particularly physical abuse.-Domestic violence and sexual abuse:In...

  • Take Back the Night
    Take Back the Night
    Take Back the Night is an internationally held march and rally intended as a protest and direct action against rape and other forms of sexual violence...



Further reading


  • McKibbin, W.F., Shackelford, T.K., Goetz, A.T., & Starratt, V.G. (2008). Why do men rape? An evolutionary psychological perspective. Review of General Psychology, 12, 86–97. Full text


External links


  • Stigma, Inc A support group for individuals conceived by rape or incest