This was originally written my sophomore year of HS, 2/11/14. It was a topic I was really interested in finding out more about as a developing writer.
Rape originates from the word rapere
which means to steal or seize. Every two minutes somewhere in America,
someone is sexually assaulted, according to a statistic from the Fort Worth
Women’s Center. Women and men alike are affected by rape and other cases of sexual
assault. The anti-rape movement began in the early 1970s; that’s when the need
for resources useful to victims was emphasized and awareness of the issue was
raised. The common misconception is that rape is limited to females, however,
rape can happen to anyone. The issue of unwanted sex has existed since the
beginning of civilization, yet only decades ago were steps taken to help
Before women gained any rights and were actually respected as human beings in most cultures, they were viewed and treated like property. The first law made against raping women was in thirteenth-century England, but it wasn’t seriously enforced. Since women had no rights in America up until 1920, men didn’t see it necessary to consider sexual assault against a woman a crime. The English writer, Mary Wollstonecraft, was the first woman to have expressed the way many women in the 1700s felt in her book The Vindication of the Rights of Women. During the Women’s Rights Convention of 1848, which resulted from women learning to organize and publicize political protests during the abolitionist movement, feminists signed for the rights of women in their Declaration of Sentiments. However, women of color were not included in this Declaration and, considering prior knowledge of female slaves being gang-raped, this was obviously a problem between races since many of these women supported abolition.