Wednesday, June 17, 2009

"Quarter Of Men In South Africa Admit Rape, Survey Finds"

by David Smith in Johannesburg
Wednesday 17 June 2009 19.24 BST

One in four men in South Africa have admitted to rape and many confess to attacking more than one victim, according to a study that exposes the country's endemic culture of sexual violence.

Three out of four rapists first attacked while still in their teens, the study found. One in 20 men said they had raped a woman or girl in the last year.

South Africa is notorious for having one of the highest levels of rape in the world. Only a fraction are reported, and only a fraction of those lead to a conviction.

The study into rape and HIV, by the country's Medical Research Council (MRC), asked men to tap their answers into a Palm Pilot device to guarantee anonymity. The method appears to have produced some unusually frank responses.

Professor Rachel Jewkes of the MRC, who carried out the research, said: "We have a very, very high prevalence of rape in South Africa. I think it is down to ideas about masculinity based on gender hierarchy and the sexual entitlement of men. It's rooted in an African ideal of manhood."
Read the rest of the article here.

SIDENOTE: It is a shocking statistic but hardly surprising. South Africa is a very violent country and rape is all about violence.

I expect though that there will be questions about the assertion that the statistic is "rooted in an African ideal of manhood." Can it be so straightforward?

What say you?



Spring Thunder's Blog said...

I reject the idea that this horrible statistic is merely because of being "rooted in an African ideal of manhood." From what I have observed and experienced, it has to do with those who do things to other beings, and those who have things done to them. This is global! There is always someone with more power -- and that is what rape is about, isn't it? -- than someone else and who is willing to abuse that power over someone else.

Now reading your blog has disturbed my peace (I count on you for your candid reportage), such as it was, sitting here at home with the flu today.

Be well, Ridwan.

Ridwan said...

Hello Shusli:

Thank you for your comment. It is spot on and you are right.

Rape is about abusive power.

The assertion about African manhood is simplistic and even racist in my thinking.

So what "ideal" do white rapists act on in South Africa? And, even if we accept the assertion then it must be conceded that the same African "ideal" does not influence 75% of SAfrican men to rape.

I do so hope that you feel better very soon. Summer flu is particularly nasty hey?

I just got over 12 days of flu and I feel for you.

Thanks for looking in sista.

You be well too!


Dade said...

I read this report on another website. Appalling.

Wasn't it John Lennon who said "Woman is the nigger of the world?"

Ridwan said...

These are "appaling" statistics Dade.

Sadly, the study has hardly caused a debate here in South Africa.

We are so subdued it is not even funny.

You will hear more noise if the national rugby team loses its first test match against the British & Irish Lions tomorrow.

We are nowhere near our bloated postapartheid pretenses.