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home > sex & society > the sexual system > rape
As everyone knows, rape means having sexual intercourse with someone against their will. Numerous descriptions and illustrations of rape scenes exist. The general image of rape is that one or several men seize a woman, control her by hitting, kicking, shouting, calling her names, rip off her clothes, spread her legs, and penetrate her with force (their erect penis is forced into her vagina, a part that is hardly ever shown). If there are several men, each of them takes the woman in turn, after which she is left behind in shock, upset, humiliated, traumatised, perhaps bleeding.
This form of rape or gang rape is traditionally seen as a serious crime, and in the past the offenders were sentenced to death (if the offence was brought to trial). It is not known how often rape or gang rape is committed but it probably is a relatively rare event which in our culture mostly exists in our fantasy world. Most viewers or readers get turned on by the description or depiction of a rape scene.
In sexual relationships men tend to take the initiative as a response to women's passive and provocative behaviour. If the woman indicates her unwillingness, men will normally back off, perhaps after a final attempt. Rape as it is described above only occurs under extreme circumstances.
But sex and violence are to some extent closely interwoven in many sexual relationships. Two partners may quarrel and 'make up' violently on a regular basis. Under these circumstances the woman may participate actively in the penetration. Often, the offence is reported to the police afterwards, usually prompted by a conflict or feelings of revenge in the case of 'cheating'.
Gang rape is not as frequent as is sometimes believed either. The harassment of a girl by three boys, who are trying to get their hands on her breasts and bottom is bad enough, and a very unpleasant experience for the girl in a general context of sex-negative conditions, primitive sexual mores, and inequality. The girl may become quite aggressive when she gets pinched or hurt. Her defensive behaviour and the boys' aggression may be seen as complementary reproductive strategies inherited from a distant past, and part of the sexual system. Rape in some form or another will continue as long as the sexual system itself continues.
Gang rape and war
Gang rape does occur during times of war or after similar events such as a sports match, a raid or a street fight. Soldiers tend to get sexually turned on when their tension and fear subside after a battle or the taking of a city. Most of them masturbate, but many have a strong desire for a sexually submissive partner. The winning party feels almighty in the flush of victory. Combined with a strong feeling of hatred towards the enemy, this may cause an urge for humiliation, and eventually leads to the rape of women and girls. According to one theory, the impregnation of enemy women was a way of spreading and reinforcing the genetic characteristics of the winners in prehistoric times. It also happens that a defeated tribe is completely exterminated in order to avoid revenge.
Rape is side effect of the sexual system
Under the influence of present-day dominant feminist thinking, rape has been been declared a crime against humanity. As pointed out above, this is not new, and it does not in itself improve the lot of women. Indignation and harsh punishment of rape is characteristic of primitive and traditional religious societies. In fact, rape is a typical side effect of the sexual system itself. One might say that sexual intercourse is always some form of rape, because it involves the penetration of one individual by another, in which both parties are driven by the natural inclination to reproduce themselves.
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