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An Anatomy of Victim Blaming Women

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Mohammad Zareef Akhand

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Tampa

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Dr. Ulluminair Salim

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It is common to find objectionable phrases run rampant in the wake of sexual assault. From the uncharitable ˜It's not really rape' to the graceless ˜She asked for it,' these egregious justifications represent an omnipresent epidemic: victim-blaming. This paper looks at the underlying factors that trigger this mentality.

Contrary to superficial notions, sexual assault encompasses intricate attributes that elicit varying sentiments from people. This ranges from the victim's disposition and the Just World Belief to substance abuse and Rape Myth Acceptance (RMA). In the context of sexual assault, women victims are methodically parted into two types: submissive and feminist (Capezza and Arriaga). The latter category is often career-oriented and independent, which does not conform to stereotypical gender roles. By virtue of this, they evoke less empathy, often castigated for 'asking for it.'

In this regard, people follow the Just World Belief, a pernicious principle that leads bystanders to hold victims accountable because they are not observing 'ethical conduct'. These intertwine into the extenuating RMA. From negating victims' claims to acquitting perpetrators, RMA occurs as men are traditionally expected to initiate, which disregards a ‘no.' Moreover, substance abuse could incite ambiguous signals. These are stretched and twisted into willingness that is cited to hold victims culpable (Grubb and Turner).

This paper will expound each of these concepts with invocations of experiments that legitimize and buttress them. In doing so, I hope to amplify the distortedness of this practice by exploring its foundation, thereby motivating society to examine and revamp our culture.

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An Anatomy of Victim Blaming Women

It is common to find objectionable phrases run rampant in the wake of sexual assault. From the uncharitable ˜It's not really rape' to the graceless ˜She asked for it,' these egregious justifications represent an omnipresent epidemic: victim-blaming. This paper looks at the underlying factors that trigger this mentality.

Contrary to superficial notions, sexual assault encompasses intricate attributes that elicit varying sentiments from people. This ranges from the victim's disposition and the Just World Belief to substance abuse and Rape Myth Acceptance (RMA). In the context of sexual assault, women victims are methodically parted into two types: submissive and feminist (Capezza and Arriaga). The latter category is often career-oriented and independent, which does not conform to stereotypical gender roles. By virtue of this, they evoke less empathy, often castigated for 'asking for it.'

In this regard, people follow the Just World Belief, a pernicious principle that leads bystanders to hold victims accountable because they are not observing 'ethical conduct'. These intertwine into the extenuating RMA. From negating victims' claims to acquitting perpetrators, RMA occurs as men are traditionally expected to initiate, which disregards a ‘no.' Moreover, substance abuse could incite ambiguous signals. These are stretched and twisted into willingness that is cited to hold victims culpable (Grubb and Turner).

This paper will expound each of these concepts with invocations of experiments that legitimize and buttress them. In doing so, I hope to amplify the distortedness of this practice by exploring its foundation, thereby motivating society to examine and revamp our culture.