The use (and misuse) of data on rape: restoring sexual assault to the national agenda

This White Paper addresses some of the issues relevant to the controversy over rape statistics, asserting that rape prevalence denial is a calculated strategy aimed at silencing rape victims and preventing successful rape prosecutions.

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The use (and misuse) of data on rape: restoring sexual assault to the national agenda by Jody Raphael, Schiller DuCanto, and TK Logan for CounterQuo (2008)

The thesis of this White Paper, prepared for the CounterQuo Conference October 17-19, 2008, is that rape prevalence denial is a calculated strategy aimed at silencing rape victims and preventing successful rape prosecutions. Anti-rape activists need to better understand the agendas that propel this campaign, be more aware of the effort's aims, and take more effective steps to combat this deliberate campaign of misinformation. The overall goal of this paper is to address some of the issues relevant to the controversy over rape statistics. The controversy over the prevalence of rape is explored in this paper in four sections. The first section will examine current trends in rape prevalence. The second and third sections discuss the fuel for the argument that there is a false rape crisisówhat we refer to as the Rape Denial Campaignóand the main attack strategies. Finally, the fourth section describes suggestions for combating the Rape Denial Campaign in order to return the issue of combating rape, rather than combating the existence of rape, to the national agenda.

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