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Exploring the Perceptions of Victims of Sexual Violence: The Impact of Participant, Victim and Perpetrator Gender on Rape Myth Endorsement.

Scurlock-Evans, Laura and Mahoney, Berenice (2014) Exploring the Perceptions of Victims of Sexual Violence: The Impact of Participant, Victim and Perpetrator Gender on Rape Myth Endorsement. In: Postgraduate Conference University of Worcester, 20.06.14, City Campus, University of Worcester. (Unpublished)

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Abstract

Rape myths (RMs) are prejudicial or false stereotypes about victims and perpetrators (Burt, 1980), which often act to minimise the impact of sexual violence, or shift blame from perpetrators to victims. Rape myth endorsement (RME) research indicates that RMs may have many serious and negative consequences, and may perpetuate the incidence of rape. Method A quasi-experimental survey study conducted with an opportunistic sample of 382 men and women, exploring the impact of participant gender, victim gender, perpetrator gender and endorsement of social roles (whilst controlling for socially desirable responding) on level of RME. Results In line with hypotheses, holding more traditional social roles and recording lower socially desirable responding were associated with higher levels of RME; RMs were endorsed to a greater extent by men compared to women. Contrary to expectations, RME was higher for those situations in which the perpetrator is male rather than female. The results indicated that RME was higher for male (rather than female) victims, although this narrowly failed to reach statistical significance. The findings also suggest that specific RMs (such as “Intoxicated men/women are usually willing to have sexual relations”) were endorsed to differing degrees, depending on victim and perpetrator gender. Conclusion The findings of the research have implications for understanding reactions to victims and perpetrators of sexual violence, and will help to inform further research which aims to explore the impact of RME on victims’ reporting and disclosure decisions.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Speech)
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Uncontrolled Keywords: rape, sexual violence, Rape Myths, Race Myth Endorsement, RME
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Academic Departments > Institute of Health and Society
Depositing User: Laura Scurlock-Evans
Date Deposited: 24 Jun 2014 07:57
Last Modified: 24 Jun 2014 07:57
URI: https://eprints.worc.ac.uk/id/eprint/3129

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