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Fraternities and Collegiate Rape Culture: Why are Some Fraternities more Dangerous Places for Women?

by A Boswell, Joan Z Spade
Gender & Society Vol 10(2) Apr 1996, 133-147 ()
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Studied and compared social interactions between male and female undergraduates at places identified by women as having a high-risk of rape to places believed by women as having a low-risk of rape. The relations between men and women and treatment of men to women were observed at parties of fraternities considered to be high- or low-risk places for rape and at two local bars to identify factors that contribute to rape. Formal interviews, informal conversations, and field observations were conducted to gather data. Factors that contribute to rape were common on this campus; however, both men and women behaved differently in different (high vs low risk) settings. Findings suggest that rape cannot be seen only as an isolated act and blamed on individual behavior. Characteristics of social settings that promote behavior which reinforces a rape culture must also be considered. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2005 APA, all rights reserved).

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