U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

NCJRS Virtual Library

The Virtual Library houses over 235,000 criminal justice resources, including all known OJP works.
Click here to search the NCJRS Virtual Library

Teenagers' Attitudes Towards Rape, Final Report

NCJ Number
E R Hall
Date Published
118 pages
Interviews with a randomly selected sample of 513 girls and 460 boys between 14 and 17 years old in Milwaukee elicited their attitudes toward rapists, various types of rape, and rape treatment centers; their responses in various rape situations; and whether or not they had actually been raped.
The interviews consisted of questions and answers, responses to hypothetical rape vignettes, and the administration of attitude scales to measure attitudes toward rape and heterosexual relationships. Rapists were generally viewed as abnormal strangers, and forced sex by an acquaintance in a social situation was not perceived as rape. Respondents anticipated more positive reactions from friends than from parents to assaults by a stranger and an acquaintance. Lack of awareness was the major barrier to the use of sexual assault treatment centers. The boys perceived sexual assault as more stigmatizing than did the girls, and boys would be less likely to tell anyone about the assault. Among males, rape tolerance was related to 'male chauvinist' attitudes. Adolescents should be made aware that rape can be perpetrated by a normal acquaintance and should be reported to the police. Adolsecents should receive information on rape treatment centers, appropriate responses to male sexual victimization, and equality and sensitivity in heterosexual relationships. 34 tables, study instruments, and 32 references.