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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at SAU chapter.


The content of this article is sensitive and may trigger some viewers. The following contains discussions of sexual assault/related topics. Viewer discretion is advised if you would like to proceed. 

Before reading this, I want you to think about how would your life be different if rape and other forms of sexual violence and the threat did not exist?

People who identify as female will always face violence; in fact, gendered violence is a term for it. This highlights not only how transgender people, gay men, and women often experience violence but also how violence occurs more broadly within a society characterized by a sex/gender/sexuality system that disparages femininity, sexual minorities, and gender minorities. It’s not only women who face this abuse.

Many definitions exist of how most women respond in the face of violence. Battered Women’s Syndrome Women’s put forward by psychologist Lenore Walker, describes a woman who “learns helplessness” and returns to” her abuser because he (in this theory, only men are abusers and only women are survivors) lures her back with promises, not to harm her again, yet continues to abuse her. Another “syndrome” is Rape Trauma” Syndrome (RTS), which describes the “irrational” behaviors of women who have been raped—behaviors that include “…not reporting ” rape for days or even months, not remembering parts of the assault, appearing too calm, or expressing anger at their treatment by police, hospital staff, or the legal system”. Both of these descriptions of the impacts of violence have successfully been used in court to prosecute perpetrators. Still, they also construct survivors as passive, damaged victims who engage in “irrational” behavior. Activists who combat gendered violence and violence against women have argued that people who experience sexual violence are, in fact, not passive victims but active agents who can organize and participate in anti-violence activism and organizations, as well as hold their assailants responsible for their actions.

This is just one point to make from UMassAmherst. This is just a short article highlighting a few important steps.

Hello! I like oversized clothes and cats! I hope we all will get along, and now I am working on reaching the required mean of 50 characters. I am not in a lot of clubs; I was in the chess club last time I looked.