White Paper- sixfortyfive645

Rape Culture: The Beginning And The End

Practice Opening 1

Rape culture is perpetrated by everyone. Females, males, mothers, fathers, students, teachers. It’s not their fault; it’s just the way of life in America. Rape culture has been integrated into our environment for so long that it has become a way of thinking. Now, the unpopular opinion or way of thinking is to go against this culture, or to be a prude. Because rape culture is ingrained in our minds, everyone is at risk of succumbing to its’ pressures and ideals, especially males. As Kate Harding explains in an interview with Rolling Stone, “American boys are all growing up in the same rape culture, so they’re growing up with this incredible sense of entitlement to women’s bodies.” By revealing this idea, Harding begins the discussion on rape culture and its’ roots, allowing others to form opinions from it, which is the whole point of a discussion. The creation of the conversation of rape culture is important to improving ideals, protecting victims’ rights, and preventing people from becoming rapists. This conversation is one that must be had, but there are obstacles. Some people do not want to talk about it. There are several reasons for this, whether it is that someone doesn’t think a rape culture exists, or they are too uptight to talk about it. The uptightness, however, may stem from being actually being a victim of rape culture. This sparks the counterintuitive point of the rape culture conversation; those who would be able to contribute experience and points to the discussion are most often found to be apprehensive to talk, in fear of experiencing the trauma all over again.

Practice Opening 2

Rape culture consists of many things. It’s getting catcalled while walking to work in the morning, or for wearing a certain type of clothing. It’s the model in a magazine with her legs spread open. It’s the misogynistic chants shouted by members of a fraternity. It’s blaming the victim and not the perpetrator. Some of these characteristics are recent, thanks to modern inventions, systems and technology. The blame game, however, is nothing new. The idea that the victim of sexual assault “wanted it” has been the justification of the perpetrators actions for a very long time. There have, however, been legal reforms to ensure the offender faces necessary consequences. Yet, as a society, we are quick to make excuses for them, thus adding to the rape culture. The question that must be confronted is: how can we prevent contributions to rape culture? The confrontation itself is the answer. Facing the facts is the first step in reforming the flaws ingrained in our culture.

Rape Culture Defined

Rape culture is defined as many things. It’s a selling point. It’s a trigger. But most of all, it’s something that controls our society, and has for a very long time.

“It’s a culture where we always identify with the person who’s accused of rape instead of identifying with the victim. When someone reports a rape, we immediately start investigating that person – the presumption is that the person is probably lying – before we even think to investigate the person being accused.”

The Trauma Doesn’t End After the Physical Assault Does

Survivors of rape and sexual assault face trauma and victimization even after they are assaulted. Members of their society, friends, family, law enforcement, etc. have all been taught the rules of rape culture, and therefore subject these teachings without even meaning to. It doesn’t matter what kind of person is assaulted, there are different ways they are traumatized throughout the rest of their life.

“I mean I wanted it. I must have wanted it because I got an erection from her stimulating me and from fear.”

“All the guys would laugh at me about it, calling me faggot for not enjoying it and I was like, “psych, I totally did enjoy it.” Then they high-fived me and told me I was cool and that Ms. Tupper was hot and they were jealous. It was the most popular I’d been in my whole life. It was the happiest I’ve ever been. And I wasn’t happy, but sometimes as a guy, if you want to fit in you have to hide your pain and humor is a great way of doing that and that’s why I sincerely think that rape is hilarious. Because I have to.”


The Difficulty With The Discussion of Rape

People often shy away from the sensitive subject of rape and it’s resulting in negative consequences. We are unable to learn and teach more about the prevention of and the acceptance that it is not the victim’s fault. We should be sensitive to the reasons that people are apprehensive to talk about it, but something must be done encourage the conversation without harming others.

“Student organizations representing women’s interests now routinely advise students that they should not feel pressured to attend or participate in class sessions that focus on the law of sexual violence, and which might therefore be traumatic. These organizations also ask criminal-law teachers to warn their classes that the rape-law unit might “trigger” traumatic memories.”

Organized Content Descriptions

  • The definition of rape culture and its’ culprits
  • The creation of rape culture
  • Different types of victimization
  • The problems with the discussion and education of sexual assault and rape culture 

Working Hypotheses

  1. The discussion of rape culture is something that must be had, despite the limitations that prevent the discussion from growing.
  2. The way to completely solve the present issue of rape culture is to begin sex education at a young age. How do we solve the issue with people in older generations? Education. It is a hard line to follow because some people have closed minds or are unwilling to join the discussion. For different reasons. Is forcing education and the discussion of rape culture actually just another form of victimization?

Topics for Smaller Papers

Definition/Classification Argument

-Rape culture definition and what supports and encourages the culture.

Cause/Effect Argument

-Different forms of victimization and how those lead to victims not wanting to report/talk about their assault and experiences.

Rebuttal Argument

-If a victim of rape decides to report the rape and later decides to retract it, he or she is seen as a liar who made false accusations. I could refute that argument by claiming they actually retracted because they didn’t want to be traumatized and victimized all over again during the process of prosecution.

Current State of Research Paper

Everything is still a work in progress. I found it hard to get all of my thoughts and ideas in order, and I am still developing a clear position I want to portray and discuss in my paper. Rape culture is a broad topic and there are multiple understandings of it, and I am really only discussing my understanding and basing that off of my research. I think that my research is strong and valid, although I will need to find more sources. I really want to focus on the discussion of rape culture and its roots. I anticipate my paper progressing into a large discussion of this culture and how to end it, but I am finding it difficult to come to a solution on how to do so.

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4 Responses to White Paper- sixfortyfive645

  1. sixfortyfive645 says:

    feedback was requested

    Feedback provided.


  2. davidbdale says:

    Opening 1.
    My goodness, what a bold, clear, dramatic opening claim! If you manage to deliver on the promise of that opening, I will be very impressed indeed. Quibbles about your pronouns, but so far, three sentences [fragments] further in, I’m still impressed. Your claim clearly indicates your universal indictment of the entire population, inevitable BECAUSE the culture is all of us. You’ll need to identify what the “way of thinking” is VERY SOON or lose us, but for now, you’re on a roll.

    From “Now, the unpopular” to “especially males,” you lose traction. You haven’t explained what you mean by rape culture yet, so nobody is clear on whether they participate or not. You have to nail that down first. Instead, you side-track yourself with how some of us try to avoid this thing we aren’t yet aware of. Re-organize this.

    If what it means is “a sense of entitlement to women’s bodies,” as suggested in the RS article, then say that first and say it clearly.

    You have at least three paragraphs going here, not one. The first is the indictment of American culture. The second is a clarification of what is meant by rape culture. The third is the efficacy of having a conversation about the entitlement assumption.

    The Fourth is truly critical, and as you seem to suspect, it could be the hinge of your argument. So why not lead with it, instead of your other strong opening?

    Rape is an abomination that cascades. The first assault is physical: the unwanted taking of a fellow human’s body. The second assault is psychological: the blaming and shaming of the victim while the assailant goes free. The third is cultural: the feeling in our society that men are entitled to women’s bodies who withhold them at their own cost. The fourth is sociological: the “experts” in the field—victims with experience that could change our misguided thinking—are so traumatized by their experience, and so marginalized by our attitudes toward them, that they are too apprehensive to share their wisdom.

    You’ve nearly identified all four of these yourself. Does it help you to see them so neatly arranged?

    Reply, please.


  3. davidbdale says:

    Opening 2.
    Blah. What a terrible first sentence. (I hope I’ve earned the right to be so blunt and dismissive by lauding your Opening 1. 🙂 )

    The list is a good idea. The explanation that “some of these are new” does not help unless you name one. But you sap your own energy when you do. You want the culture to be of long-standing? OK. Blow past the newness of one.

    See how you sabotage yourself, sixfortyfive. Rape culture is the catcalls, the model, the chants, the blame. Good. With you. Keep me on your side. (Some are recent. What?) Blame is not new. OK. I thought we were there, but glad to be back on track. The story has always been that the victim “wanted it.” Good. (Not good morally, but good argument.) (However, some laws have made it necessary to . . . . what!? We were making headway there!) We make excuses for rapists! Right! Back on track! How can we prevent it? Right! The confrontation IS THE ANSWER? Huh? Asking questions is an answer? Gotta admit, I’m a little disappointed.

    Couldn’t we at least start by blaming police and prosecutors who thwart ordinary justice by exonerating rapists as just as guilty as the rapists themselves? Do we have to start by asking questions when so many answers are obvious? (Just asking.)

    RC Defined.
    I really don’t understand the “selling point” claim. The “trigger” claim is pretty confusing too. Where did the quote come from? Does the sentiment expressed cut across the whole society? Does everybody identify first with the rapist?

    Without preparation, anyone reading this paragraph will be very confused by the unexpected erection. But what’s most odd about your choice of examples here (of continuing trauma) is that his classmates never BLAMED him for his rape because they didn’t consider it blameworthy. For the victim, the episode has remained something to transcend or live down, but for his classmates, it was an achievement to be envied. What does THAT say about rape? That as long as a male achieves sexual arousal, ANYTHING GOES? That’s a lesson, but not the lesson I think you meant to demonstrate here.

    Wow. What a fantastic example of how impossible it is to have meaningful dialog. Thank you for sharing this with me, sixfortyfive. I’m sick to my stomach.

    These are still very vague. Have you advanced past them these last several weeks? The White Paper is a good place to collect your best work.

    1. OK. I think it might be more effective to post photos of serial abusers on social media under the headline: Don’t Date this Date Rapist, but if you think discussion is a better suggestion, all right.
    2. OK. Are you sure? Nothing more dramatic?

    Yawn. What’s a date? What’s a slut? Can a guy be one? Why not? How does that attitude contribute to date rape?

    OK. And to what does their not wanting to talk contribute? Chain of causation.

    Yes you could. But do you have to? Does anybody ever actually retract the accusation, or do they just decline to pursue the prosecution?

    Current State
    Not much here to respond to.

    I’m a fan of your attitude and your willingness to approach the tough topic from uncomfortable angles, sixfortyfive. I hope that will result in a courageous paper, and that you won’t disappoint me by wimping out. Take some chances here. You have the nerve. You have a nose for the counterintuitive. Ride hard.

    Helpful at all?
    Reply, please.


  4. sixfortyfive645 says:

    This was indeed helpful because it influenced me which opening to use! Thank you for the praise and criticism


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