Does Provocative Dress Ever Cause Rape?

Some friends were discussing the “Slut Walks” that keep popping up, and someone asked whether provocative clothing ever plays a role in rape. Interesting that “provocative” is used to describe a style of dress, suggesting that clothes actually provoke something. Attention? Desire? Rape?

Women don’t cause rape by what they wear. Asking about correlation between clothing and rape is tricky, though.

To make clear, sexual assault is never the victim’s fault. Someone has to act to commit rape. No one forces that choice. If seeing an enticing woman led men to conclude, “I’ve got to rape her,” all men would be rapists. Yet few are.

And plenty of assaulted women are not dressed sexily, including women draped in head-to-toe burqas. Interestingly, veiled women are blamed, too: “He must have seen a bit of her ankle, wrist, hair, neck… Who could resist!?”

Strippers are the most sexually “provocative” of all, yet patrons manage to contain themselves. Yes, bouncers provide security, but they aren’t stationed with blinders blocking their sight. And who’s watching them? Male customers aren’t physically restrained. The men are actually controlling themselves.

Sociologists who have interviewed rapists, read their accounts and looked at the circumstances of their crimes have learned that they have a variety of motives. Here are a few:

Some rape to feel powerful, others gang rape to demonstrate their “manhood” (defined as powerful, dominant, violent, virile, and not gay) to each other and fraternally bond, some become aroused by sadistically bringing sex and violence together, others seek to harm an entire race, community or nation by using sexual assault as a political weapon, still others seek revenge against someone other than the rape victim. And some misread cues.

Let’s take a look at these mistaken cue readers. Here’s where it gets tricky because a correlation between clothing and rape is not the same thing as sexy clothing causing assault.

Rapists who misread cues believe the following: men are naturally assertive and women are naturally passive. There are “good girls” and “bad girls.” Bad girls secretly want sex but can’t admit it, so they trick men into forcing sex. How do these “bad girls” send cues (in these men’s minds)? By doing things like smiling at them, or making eye contact, or by showing a little leg or cleavage. So these men may see a low-cut blouse as a “rape me” signal. But while they also see a smile or eye contact as a sexual come-on, women are only blamed for the dress. Have you ever heard anyone say, “Never look at a man,” or “Never smile at a man, he may rape you!”

Women, if you think dressing modestly  will protect you, it won’t. Most rapists don’t care about “cues,” and just in case you run into those who do, you better not look at, or smile at, any man either. Just to be safe.

Should you really have to live that way? Or should men choose not to rape? As most do?

The number of assaults will not go down if women make sure to cover up. The cue-reading rapist has decided to attack someone, and is seeking justification. He will rape and he will find something to blame other than himself.

By placing women in charge of his sexuality he abdicates responsibility (it’s her fault). How convenient for him!

And while different rapists have different ways of thinking, they are all sexist. At the least, they believe they have more right to a woman’s body than a woman does, herself.

Related Posts on BroadBlogs
Mind of a Rapist: Trying to Bridge a Gap between a Small Self and a Big Man
Rape Epidemic in South Africa. Why?
Rape Victims Shamed Into Suicide. In Pakistan. In America

About BroadBlogs

I have a Ph.D. from UCLA in sociology (emphasis: gender, social psych). I currently teach sociology and women's studies at Foothill College in Los Altos Hills, CA. I have also lectured at San Jose State. And I have blogged for Feminispire, Ms. Magazine, The Good Men Project and Daily Kos. Also been picked up by The Alternet.

Posted on September 26, 2011, in feminism, gender, psychology, rape and sexual assault, sexism, women and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 282 Comments.

  1. I still find it very mind blowing that people truly believe that clothing has anything to do with the desire to be touched or rape. The “provocative” dress does not cause the rape, the rapist does. No one gets ready one day and thinks that they want to attract harassment. The reason rape is as serious as it is, is because people obviously do not enjoy being touched without their consent. The fact that people find a piece of clothing provocative, is already an issue that lies way beyond in that person’s mind. Why is it that the target is the one receiving the hate because they chose to wear what they did? It is easier to blame someone for showing a bit of skin rather than blame the person who went out of their way to cause the damage right? Wrong. That is the main problem with society. Blaming what is already seen as wrong so that the person who did the damage gets their way and somehow becomes the “victim.” Someone who is covered up has just as much of a chance of being raped as someone who is wearing something smaller, because that is already an issue with the rapist and the way their brain is wired.

    • The rapist will rape regardless of what a woman is wearing. Most want to justify themselves and so they will find some excuse. She looked at me! Like women should never look at men?!

      They do seem to be more social reasons then brain wiring behind rate though. Rape was virtually nonexistent in Indian tribes of the East Coast of the Americas. In fact, if you look at social patterns you find that violence against women is the highest and strongly patriarchal cultures and the lowest in the most gender-equal cultures.

  2. An incredibly thought-provoking post. I completely agree that the stigma surrounding what a woman chooses to wear is not the underlying cause of why men feel it is acceptable to violate someone in such a manner. Men, and most of society in general, would rather have us believe that we are the sole cause of sexual violence which occurs. They create a multitude of reasons as to why the men feel obliged to violate our bodies, including what we were wearing, how we were acting, our body language and much more. Rape culture throughout America has become increasingly more of an issue, yet this is a much deeper term than many believe. Rape culture is not only the victimization of the instigator, but the normalization of varying gender roles. For instance, women are viewed as historically being ‘submissive’ or ‘passive’ in sexual encounters while men are thought of as being dominant and sexually aggressive. In many cases, it is this stigma which perpetuates the normalcy of sexual assault in American culture.
    I also concur with your observation that the men who are responsible for these acts of sexual violence are sexist. They do believe, as you stated, that they have more of a right to our bodies than we do. In this sense, I do believe that statements of certainty are necessary for these acts. Cases of sexual assault, in my opinion, whether done unto a male or female, are NEVER the victim’s fault. Nobody goes out with the intention of being sexually violated and only the choices of the perpetrator are to blame for the violating act. I also believe that one of the greatest hindrances of rape culture lies with the fact that we often overlook that men can also be victims of sexual assault just the same as women. In today’s society, I believe that, as women, it is just as imperative that we give these men the same support and respect which are given to other women.

  3. This discussion is brought up in legal courts more times than I would like to see. I am appreciative that you brought up the example of women wearing burqas to show that dressing modestly will not necessarily reduce your chances of being raped. Another example is that of raping a child. This is an extremely unfortunate and horrible event that happens in our society, and thankfully people seldom ask children “what they were wearing” when they were sexually assaulted. Recently, I saw an exhibit that I thought powerfully showcased the point I believe in being made in this blog post. It was a collection of clothes that people were wearing when they were sexually assaulted, and it ranged from children’s pajamas to hospital gowns. I thought that this did an excellent job at showing that clothes do not cause rape, only rapists can cause rapes to happen. Having someone tell a victim of sexual assault that what they were wearing might have caused them to have the worst experience of their life is incredibly invalidating, and more judges and legal professionals need training for how to deal with survivors of sexual assault.

  4. More and more women have come out about their assault background, and I feel like as sexual assault has become more of an open problem in today’s world, the blame is being put on women and they have had to suffer the consequences more than the perpetrators . Growing up and especially now in college, us women are being told to not dress provocative, to never set our drink down at a bar/club/party, to not walk on the streets at night and the list goes on. It feels like society is trying to fix this issue by coming up with solutions like these, but I don’t think it just coincidentally happens to be men that usually are the perpetrators. We should focus on the issue that society gives too much privilege to men and is pressuring men to prove their masculinity. Hypermasculinity and privilege are the main reasons, I believe, that some men feel it’s okay to do this and is what leads them to do this. So why isn’t there much light ever being shed on this problem? A women’s skirt length isn’t the problem in our society, and I think when more people realize that we can move forward to better solutions for this issue.

  5. Rape is a men’s issue just as much as it is a women’s issue– rape is a conscious choice, and it has nothing to do with how revealing someone’s clothing is. Teaching not to rape, as opposed to teaching women how not to be raped, is the only effective method of prevention. The excuse that the victim was wearing something provocative is outdated, overused and unacceptable. It also doesn’t justify the rape of children, or of men themselves. On the topic of the slut march, one of the most powerful protest signs I saw simply read, “This is what I was wearing when I was asking for it.” The woman holding the sign wore a loose-fitting T shirt and jeans, which contradicts the excuse that rape is the fault of the victim. There is no cause of rape besides rapists. Victim blaming is one of the largest parts of rape culture, used to silence and remove power from rape survivors. The fact that most rape cases go unreported is partially due to the ugliness of victim blaming and other counterparts of rape culture. Aside from teaching people not to rape, we should encourage survivors to come forward rather than shutting them down and blaming them for someone else’s crime.

  6. Carolyn Oliver

    I think we have proven time and time again that provocative dressing does not cause rape. Look at the studies and a powerful art exhibit at the university of Kansas, “what were you wearing”, which shows clothing was not an issue of the sexual assaults displayed. A narcissistic human does. One who feels that another human is here for their own benefit to satisfy whatever craving they need to feed. A sick individual who has no compassion for human life, boundaries or just the word no. Now we ask women to come forward and speak up for their right as a human to bring these men into the light. #MeToo is a powerful beginning to stop the self righteous men from continuing this offensive crime.

  7. Katherine Cortez

    I highly believe this topic is so hard to come to conclude. There are thousands of things you can say, yet none of them justify the acts of rapist, nor state that women will ever be safe. Women aren’t the only ones who suffer from this terrible cases of rape, but majority of time women are the victims. I’m not implying that men deserve this to happen to them, because no human being does, but why add on more into women’s image? Women are constantly being criticized for every step they take, now even for a simple smile and glance? I mean what worse can it get? “I raped her because she was breathing? It sounds absurd, and that’s exactly what it is. This is putting limits to a human being being a human being, I love to look at people, smile, start a conversation, yet I have to be extra careful because it might cost me to be sexually abused. Notice how I am not even mentioning about dress code, I am talking about the most minimum thing such as a smile and glance that women are being restricted from. It is so sad, so sad to know that life is already tough, and having to deal with society like this just makes it more difficult to survive. We want good in the world, but we are only creating of each other monsters.

  8. Unfortunately this is what a lot of peoples mind go to when looking at a rape case. They(mostly men) say things like “What was she wearing” or “Was she leading him on”. No matter what rape is NEVER the victims fault. It never made sense to me when men say “She was asking for it”, why would someone ask to be sexually violated? It is a sad truth that women feel they have to cover their bodies up to feel safe in case a man cant control his sexual urges. It’s obvious those accusations against the women are just men trying to justify their actions.

  9. Just because someone is dressed provocatively, does not mean it cause rape. Men who see women who are in these types of clothes rape for many reasons. Usually because of their man hood or they think because they are men, that can do whatever they want. There are so many cases where women are raped and they are not wearing provocative clothing. They are just wearing jeans and a hoodie, and they still get raped. It’s not the provocative clothing, it’s the men who can’t control themselves and want to prove something. They want to show or gain some sort of respect for themselves by raping women. Men go to clubs and strip clubs and so on where there are women who are wearing close to no clothes and those men don’t rape them. Most of them don’t even go near them. It has nothing to do with what a woman is wearing, it has to do with the men who have no respect for women. It has to do with the men who think that are the all mighty and think they can do whatever they want because they need to boost their ego. Then there’s no help from the law, because in court they ask what the women were wearing and then blame them. They were not asking for it, they were trying to get home, not asking to get raped by a stranger. Even then, it happens with couple, and by friends because men think that because they are nice to women, they owe them something. Clothing does not cause rape.

  10. While I was reading this blog, all of the things that were going on inside of my head were questions like “Do people out there actually think that rape is caused by what someone chooses to wear?”. I’m in awe of the amount of narrow-mindedness that goes on amongst the rest of our, supposedly, unified nation. It’s a rather touchy subject for me to talk about how easily young generations can fall into the conformity of our modern society because of my younger sister. I can’t believe how sad it is to think about the point that was brought up concerning the strippers not getting physically assaulted, when they are literally flaunting everything that they have out to the male customers, because to bring one’s attention about the assault that Brock Turner had committed should just be a reminder to all people that rape has nothing to do with how a woman is dressed. The male who is even thinking about committing the crime of rape has already have a motive in his mind that he’s going to rape this woman, for she is the one that everyone’s going to blame and how she is “asking” to be raped. A woman’s choice of wardrobe shouldn’t act as an indicator to everyone that this woman is asking to be raped. The fact that this nation still doesn’t have equality towards women and how they choose to dress is a disappointment.

  11. I do not believe in any way that provocative dress ever cause rape, women are free to wear what they want and it should not be blamed women for the way they dress or ever have a man think that because they dress sexuality it means they deserve to be raped. As mentioned in the article rape happens in any form, as there are many raps sit out there that assault women for different reasons. Women are not safe either way, even if they are fully clothed it still happens. This topic means so much to me, it’s so hard to come out when a person has been a raped victima and i myself was and i use to be so scared to say that i was a rape victim because many of us women are afraid to step up and say something because of stuff like this where the women is one to blame. Rape can happen within a relationship such as boyfriend, family members, strangers it can be anyone and ti can happen anywhere. Mine was in a relationship, for so long i didn’t step up because i was told that i was asking for it when i was under the influence and had no clue. I find it very upsetting to have men think women deserve it because of what they wear or because they are under the influence. I’ve had people in my life who have been raped that are my friends and they stayed silent like me because they were afraid to speak up. This was the fear of us not getting the justice we deserve, as for example the case of Brock Turner, where he had raped a girl behind the dumpster and was under the influence and he had only got 6 months of time in jail. I think that it is sad how the rape cases are handled now a days and the privileges that get certain men sentenced for less time just like Brock Turner who was a swimmer who was aspired to compete in the olympics. There needs to be a better justice system for rape cases, women are just as equal as men and should not be seen any different.

  12. Cristiana palmieri

    It has been always easy to blame others and not take responsibility of the own actions. In case of sexual assault, many people would question first the clothing that the victim was wearing as the cause of that action; therefore the fault falls on the victim. “What Were You Wearing?” is a powerful exhibit at University of Kansas exhibited in 2013 in which eighteen outfits worn by the victims of rape were on display with beside a note by the victim about that outfit; from little girl outfit, to jeans and shirt, and kaki pants, it is evident that the outfit is not to blame. The mind of a rapist is twisted in the dominant role that male had been given by the old fashioned society; women were inferior and needed to be tame. Whenever there is a sexual assault, there is evidence that women are still denied autonomy in self-expression and self-determination in the societal net of constructed expectations. The Stanford rape is another example in which “[the rapist] wanting to hook up with someone” and unfortunately, he was firm in his thoughts and found his victim. Clothes are not to blame, the rapist is to blame, his mind, his justification that is okay to use a body for his pleasure.

    Art Exhibit: What Were You Wearing?

    Katie Baker: letter to her rapist

  13. I feel that it doesn’t matter what you wear, how you look at someone, if you smile or not. The problem is the men who commit the rapes. If you were to encounter one of these men there is no outfit that is going to prevent him from trying to assault you. Society loves to shame women for what they wear or how they act. It is never okay to violate someone for any reason and the blame is on the person committing the crime. The way a woman dresses doesn’t provoke rape now it might make a man more attracted to you. If the amount of cleavage or skin you show had a anything to do with the reason women get raped then we should never wear swimsuits or even some uniforms for certain sports. Being a rape victim is hard enough and having society blaming you for it because what you wear or how you act is unfair. Any rape victim whether it’s a female or male shouldn’t have to feel like they are at fault for being violated.

  14. its a well written article that i enjoyed reading from the beginning until the end .Even though almost every person regardless of their faith ,nationality ,religion or their region is against rape ,the way rape is being handle and viewed ,its not where its supposed to be .Yes its worst in some countries than others but even the most advance ones ,still has along way to go in providing justice for the victims .There is absolutely nothing that justifies rape and whoever does should be held responsible for it and pay for his actions .the way a person dress does NOT cause rape ,it may attached more attention but certainly not an excise for the rapist because as a normal person that consider myself to be,i’ll never force myself on a woman .i just do not understand how it can be enjoyable for these people to force themselves sexually on others .the punishment for the rapist should harsher and shouldn’t get away with ,just because he is rich and white ,the latest example is the Stanford swimmer who only received six months in jail for raping unconscious.

    • I’ve noticed that a lot of men who are not rapists cannot understand men forcing themselves on someone. It seems to be more about feeling powerful than about sexuality.

  15. Please avoid using “sexual assault” and “rape” interchangeably as if they were synonyms. Rape is one kind of sexual assault. “Sexual assault” is a much broader term that varies widely in its legal definition. It can be anything from a brutal rape-murder to a pat on the butt.

    • “Sexual assault” is a much broader term that varies widely in its legal definition. It can be anything from a brutal rape-murder…”

      As you just said, rape is one form of sexual assault.

      And when women are raped or sexually assaulted their clothing is often blamed.

  16. No provocative clothes do not cause rape. Men and women should be respected regardless how they are dressed. The assumption that when a woman is wearing skimpy clothes is asking for it, is completely false. One should be able to be free to dress however they wish without feeling threatened that someone might harm them. I am against women being slut shammed and being stripped because of the opinions of those who think they are not decent; It is barbaric and needs to stop. For example in many African countries, (especially in the cities) local women who wear less clothing get stripped in public by many men, sometimes this women are beaten and sexually harassed, yet if you go to some villages people walk around half dressed and no one bothers them or thinks they are being provocative. Although when men walk around less dressed in the city we think that it must be hot but when a women does it, its sexual and she wants it. Why do we have the double standards? Although I must say that we must be very mindful and cocious of where we go and how we dress at times as women: mostly if you are going to a very religious place, especially any place that has Sharia Law like Saudi Arabia I would rather wear a burka because its a completely different scenario over there. If I am in any liberal setting I would dress however I feel like based on the weather temperatures.

  17. Although not as apparent as in history where women had to live with husbands, then sons if their husbands died and were never allowed to be on their own, men today still feel like they have control over a woman and her body. The argument that a woman’s behavior or fashion sense provokes rape on them goes back to control and restricting women of what they can and cannot do in society. Despite what history has taught us, some people in present day still live by this social ranking where women are below men and need to be told how to live, thus putting women in danger of rape. If we teach our sons at a young age to respect girls, they are more likely to grow up treating women the same as men and therefore, preventing sexism in a society that clearly has much improvement to do. Unfortunately, it seems as if no matter how much we teach our daughters to understand self-importance in order to boost their self-confidence, rape cannot be prevented until our society has reached a unilateral value of gender equality.

  18. I do not think the way a woman dresses should determine if a man is going to rape her ever, because Women should have a right to wear whatever they want to wear and if they want to show some cleavage, they should be able to wear it. Women should not be sexualized for what they are wearing, because most of the time they are wearing those things for themselves and to look good for themselves and not anybody else, but men do not see it that way which is super sad and should change.

  19. Since clothing companies and advertisements all sell little to no clothing cover because it is fashion and what the people want, shouldn’t they be blamed for rape? That is, if clothing is what courts are saying is the reason why a woman was raped. Of course they aren’t blamed, because companies in America have the right to sell whatever clothing they want because an article of clothing is also a form of art as well as a way for people to express themselves. In that case, we as women should be free to buy and wear whatever clothing is available to us, even if it is low cut, has holes in it, or is short. It is our right of self expression.
    As a woman, if we want to wear something we think is cute, makes us feel good, shows off our body in a way that empowers us, we should wear it! But women’s bodies are treated as sex objects by society, so we are helpless under the scrutiny of our fellow humans no matter what we wear. We are trapped in a double bind.

    • Yeah, it’s not really about the clothes. A rapist who wants to justify himself will find one excuse or another, Whether it’s clothes, looking at him, smiling at him…

      It’s ridiculous!

  20. This topic is very controversial and it’s interesting to see and read about people’s different opinions. I personally as a women, I don’t think I should have to worry about what I wear because that can cause me to get rape. Girls shouldn’t fear having to not wear something they like because it can cause them to get rape. I think we label girls on how they dress that it makes it seem like it is okay to call girls sluts because they are wearing a tight dress or justify their raping because of that, which too me is ridiculous. But just like it is stated above, you can be fully covered and still get rape. I think we need to stop saying that girls provact guys because of how they are dress because that is not true, someone will rape you regardless if you are fully clothed or not. I dont think there is any way of stopping that, which is really sad but true because we will never know the actual reasons to why people decide to rape.

  21. I strongly believe that this a lot of this issue perpetuates within school systems. Especially in the past couple of years, you hear stories about young girls and teenagers being sent home from school because their tankt-op showed too much shoulder or their skirts didn’t come past their fingertips. The reasoning behind it always being that the attire is “distracting” to other peers. In a way, it definitely perpetuates rape culture at a young age. Some of these insane clothing rules, which are almost always only geared towards women, are part of the problem.
    In my experience, it has always seemed like lessons like “don’t get raped” are taught more often than “don’t rape”, which is exactly what these school dress codes come across as.
    Women should be able to dress however they want to without the fear of sexual assault, although granted I do think school attire should be reasonably modest.
    In my opinion, the “distracted peers” should be disciplined instead of the girl who gets sent home because her tall frame makes her shorts look shorter and “distracting”.

  22. Why is it that society somehow finds a way to blame woman? Instead of questioning what woman are wearing and telling them not to dress a certain way we should be questioning why some men find it okay to rape woman. Don’t tell your daughter how to dress, tell your son not to rape.

  23. I truly agree. Yet, it is pathetic how people still blame women for the way they dress. Rather than blaming rapist for violating laws and someones sexuality by forcing someone for sexual act, society justifies them by blaming the victim for wearing dress or skirt that are too short, what makes it even more funny is the fact that we live in 21st century where beauty standards often times awaits from us to dress that way.
    I find it interesting how smiling and flirting can be considered as a request for sexual force. I haven’t heard of this theory before and honestly, it is as pathetic as blaming someone for dressing too sexy. It has become that far that women cannot anymore flirt to men if they find him attractive and might want to get to know him. Obviously, this does not applies to all men, because from the whole population just few are rapists, still society tend to judge victims as they would’ve been the rapists.

  24. When it comes to violence against women I think that it’s pretty straightforward that the victim is never to blame; that’s why she is called a victim and not an opposing combatant. However, there are still many men and women who insist that some modicum of blame rests on the victim if she happened to be acting in a suggestive manner, or was “skimpily” clad. Firstly, I’d like to point out that both the arguments stated above rely on very subjective opinions, every culture and furthermore, every individual has a unique range of what is morally acceptable and what isn’t. “Skimpily clad” in the extreme of the conservative spectrum in American culture can mean showing shoulders, any leg above mid-calf, and excessive view of the neck whereas on the extreme of the liberal perspective, areas such as San Francisco have been able to host a wide variety of people of both genders where the body is exhibited without any violent repercussions. Who is to judge whether the victim in question was “scantily clad”?
    Secondly, while the consequences of this line of thought (that the woman may be in part responsible for her rape) for women are clear, it interests me that the enormous consequences this conviction has for men aren’t considered. How are men harmed by this conviction? While men represent a very small percentage of those raped, they represent a very high percentage of those incarcerated, especially with regard to violent crime. By blaming the dress of a woman in a rape situation, the underlying understanding is that men are ignoble creatures that cannot control themselves and cannot draw forth any rationale preventing their committing despicable actions. When criminals go on trial and their guilt is unable to be disputed, the defense for the perpetrator admits that the culprit committed the crime but that the criminal deserves a less severe penalty due to mitigating factors. Mitigating factors are details of the case that lessen the culpability of the person who committed the crime. In rape cases, a common mitigating factor is that the woman was wearing “inappropriate” clothing and so the man couldn’t help himself. While this excuse has aided many rapists in obtaining more lenient sentences, the mitigating factor serves a more transcendental and insidious purpose. If we excuse men by taking into account their “passionate” nature, then we are condemning men as irrational creatures without choice once their biology decides to act. Accepting this, society accepts that all men must biologically submit to these monstrous sentiments and that the only reason all men do not rape is solely because of fear to legal consequences. In the same way that women have for centuries been limited by assumptions based on their biology, now men are subjected to the same, and ironically they themselves perpetuate the creation of their own chains. So men and women, condemn the rapist with the full weight of responsibility; carrying the burden of choice and responsibility is liberty when compared to the blind condemnation of biological determinism.

    • Yeah, those who insist that the fault is the woman’s have a very low opinion of men.

      And we know that it’s not true partly because the vast majority of men don’t rape, regardless of what women are wearing. Men actually can control themselves.

      But in patriarchies women get blamed for the terrible things men do to them.

  25. On the topic of rape along with gender violence society tends to victim blame women. For example why did she wear that dress or why did she drink that much; however, it shouldn’t matter what she is doing because the real problem regarding rape and violence upon women is the men who are doing these wrong acts. Women should be able to wear and dress however they choose because at the end of the day everyone likes to look good and feel good, but victimizing women regarding this topic disturbs me. I agree as well, rapist will rape whatever they feel like so yes what women wear may arouse the man, but just because she looks good and looks at you does not mean you are entitled to her. Also, no means no and without consent in my book along with many other people’s values, it is rape.

  26. Having to consciously watch over how you dress and how provocative you are perceived as dehumanizes women. It degrades women into seeing themselves as simply objects that men lust over. It strips you from your sense of agency.
    Correlation between rape and clothing is an interesting conversation especially as one could gloss over the garments donned by large majority of a particular culture/country, and infer their stance on this correlation.

    Having grown up in a country where everyone can dress as they please. I agree with the fact that most rapists don’t care how you look like – if you’re covered from head to toe, or you’re not. They would always attribute a certain part of women’s clothing to the reason they force themselves onto women. If she’s wearing too little, they’ll go, “She’s asking for it”. If they wear too much, they’ll go, “Why is she hiding her body?” or “The fact that her body is all covered up intrigues me and uncovering mystery is always fun”.

    A rape case that haunts me until today happened in Malaysia when I was eleven. Eleven. The news of her missing was all over the news for weeks. She was eight. A month after she went missing, authorities found a disfigured body in a luggage carry-on bag outside a bank. She was so disfigured that the forensics had to do some DNA test to determine if it was really her. It was her. She was EIGHT. To this day, the authorities could not find this

    Rape is animalistic. It is as if these rapists are animals acting upon instinct and just pounce whoever within a 3-mile radius. I dislike the message perpetuated in sexual assault awareness campaigns about how “[s]he’s someone’s daughter, she’s someone’s wife, she’s someone’s sister, she’s someone’s friend”. How about she is someone. Period. You don’t only matter because you belong to someone. You matter because you ARE someone.

  27. It really aggravates me to know and to think that rapist would blame the victim for their actions. Like stated above bouncers restrain from rape while being in a seen with a bunch of naked girls or strippers. Rape is a choice one that no one should ever have to go though but something a rapist should own up to. It’s sad to know that there are many girls who have been raped and don’t bother to speak out about it because they’re afraid they might experience victim blaming. A woman should be able to wear whatever she pleases whether it be covered from head to toe or showing some ankles and cleavage. Women shouldn’t have to alter the way they dress to resist temptation of a male to rape them. Does every girl walking around the beach in a bikini mean she’s asking for it ? NO!? Does a friendly smile mean she’s asking for it ? NO!! A rapist is a coward and therefore blames everyone but themselves and I think for a male to say a female was asking for it or playing hard to get is 100% BS!

  28. Janell Teixeira

    This is one topic that really can get my blood boiling. It blows my mind that people could really try to place the blame of a rape on someone who had no control in the situation. Men who are rapists always think the woman wants him and wants sex, and this usually comes from misreading cues, like you mention in the post. Sometimes, it’s also because the man thinks he is entitled to whatever he wants, and if he wants sex from a particular woman he finds good looking, he will get it. Growing up, I’ve seen how society always tries to put the fault on the woman for rape. I’ve been told by many people to cover myself and to not wear revealing clothes so that I don’t seem like I’m “asking for it”. If I show my legs or arms, or wear a lower-cut shirt, it’s because the weather is warm and I want to dress for it, or just to make myself feel good about myself. This is the case for many women, but for some reason, society has made it seem like girls dressing for the weather or wearing cute clothes to feel good about themselves (both of which have nothing to do with men) is a way of them asking for a man to have sex with her. Telling women to “cover up” and avoid eye contact with men is a way of demeaning their self worth and furthering the idea that women are inferior to men. I think we need to change the way we educate about rape and handle it. We need to stop blaming the victim, because like I said, the woman has no control in the situation. We need to start putting the blame on the man for the act he committed, and teach men not to rape, instead of teaching women to cover up. It’s not fair for women to have to live in fear of what their clothes and actions could possibly “cause”. Women should be able to live comfortable and free as they wish, and men should be taught not to take what they are not clearly given.

  29. I definitely have to agree with you. The rapist are going to do what they choose to do. I must say though there has been an incidence where I was walking with some friends and I was wearing a dress, not a short dress just a little above my knees and a guy I had walked by whistled and had said something I didn’t say anything, but I did smile as I looked down just because I didn’t know what to do. Well I kept walking, but he followed and kept saying more stuff saying come talked to him and I just kept walking. This went on for a few blocks and it was scary eventually he gave up, but anyone who has the motive to rape would of kept going because that was there plan. So I definitely believe in the don’t look or smile just to be on the safe side could of given the wrong person the wrong look. It is sad though that I have to be carful because of what can happen to me. But I agree that it has nothing to do with what you wear, that will just get lots of mens attention.

  30. We’ve talked about this in class and I think there’s a good point in why some men rape. To be powerful. Men shouldn’t and don’t rape by what you’re wearing. If I want to wear a skin tight dress I shouldn’t feel like I’m going to get raped. Like mentioned above, strippers are the most provocative and yet they’re less likely to get raped. Why? Maybe because they’re being carefully monitored by the staff or because men who go in there just want a show. It all comes down to it psychologically. The way you think. There might be some things that trigger you. Whether it’s a women in a pony tail or like mentioned above she’s showing some cleavage. And I do agree that they typically blame the woman even if it’s their fault. I don’t think women should be blamed for what they wear that causes rape. Men wear what they want and I don’t go around saying I want to rape them not have a heard.

    • Men actually cant go out wearing what they want apparently. The Idea that men cant go out wearing what they want is soooo subjective.

      If a man goes out wearing baggy clothing with a t-shirt people will assume and judge the person for being a thug or gang-banger. . . If a man goes out wearing tight pants with a tight shirt, he could be called gay. . . same time these people are treated exactly how they are viewed just like women. Do you think people who wear baggy clothes wants to be called a thug? or guys who wear tight clothes want to be called gay?

      But its soooo easy for people to say well yea that Man is being followed in a store because of how he’s dressed… Yea people feel uneasy about him because of how hes dressed…. People are judgemental as hell. . . I am sure at least once someone has heard someone being treated poorly because of how they are dressed. Has anyone seen a man get beat up because people portrayed him as a thug or a criminal? or someone being called suspicious because of how they were dressed? its the same form of judgement just presented in a different way. This isn’t just for women but men also. Its silly to just think women cant go around wearing what they want. . . No this is everyone apparently.

      and on a level in this society its true. People cannot wear what they want simply because it sends out signals to people and because we have crazy people living with us, they get triggered to do stupid things based off of what they see. And regardless how “wrong” it is for people to judge someone off of how they look, or treat someone a certain way because of how they are presenting themselves. It still will happen.

      • It’s true that people are constantly judged based on what they’re wearing. But men are never blamed for being raped because of what they are wearing.

      • Because the males that rape males generally have other agendas whereas other women it’s usually their natural disposition and how it’s seen.

      • I don’t understand this.

      • Basically men and women are completely different in nature. Women possess certain gems (if that’s how you want put it) which most men want. It automatically makes them more vulnerable in that sense.

      • Well, men and women are not as different as you might think.

        Men, Women not from Mars, Venus

        And rape is virtually nonexistent and at least some gender-equal society like the American Indians of the east coast before contact with Europeans .

      • Personally I feel it’s best for every woman to learn self defence. I know there are already many strong females out there that can really kick-ass. This is best on the long run. A short term solution is to just be cautious with who you hang around with and how you present yourself.

      • Always a good idea. And of course, men should not rape and guys should encourage guys not to.

  31. In all honesty we should not be afraid to tell women about the risks as they are, not as we might wish them to be. However openly discussing this possible risk might be misunderstood by the masses as a tacit permission to assault women (rather than as a targeted message to reduce specific correlated assaults).  Quite to the contrary, society is seen as smart enough to understand the message that we shouldn’t let our young children wander off alone in a mall, without thinking such a warning emboldens pedophiles to abuse our kids.  Why then do some insist an advisory to women emboldens abusive males?

    • So in your view women should never look at men or smile at men because some men see both of those things as a cue that the woman wants him to rape them. That’s insane.

      No. Men need to learn that rape is not OK in any situation.

  32. Does provocative dress ever cause rape ?
    Where I come from, if someone rapes you and you happen to be drunk at the time — like during
    a night out celebrating and drinking alcohol (often involving wearing something fancier than
    everyday clothes) — it is considered an extenuating circumstance and thus somehow more
    forgivable for the perpetrator. The same thing applies if the victim is disabled. I truly hope the
    law has been changed by now but I cannot fathom how the law was ever able to pass in the first
    place. If anything, it should be considered worse to attack a person who is unable to defend
    Rape is never the victim’s fault, no matter what they are wearing, how they are acting or if
    they are drunk or not. It is a choice that the rapist chooses to do. Too many times, if someone
    (usually a girl or a woman) gets sexually harassed — not necessarily raped — we have heard the
    words: “Well, what was she wearing?”. As if, if the person is wearing something that the perpetrator an interprets “provocative”, that would be considered an extenuating circumstance. The way you are
    dressed is irrelevant and does not change the fact that the rapist does not have consent. The
    discourse evolving rape should never be about blaming the victim in any way or empathizing
    with the rapist.

  33. Growing up I often heard adults telling me and my friends, “oh you can’t wear that it’s too revealing,” or in school, we would get in trouble for our bra straps showing. To this day, it still baffles me that we teach girls how not to get raped, but no one talks about teaching boys about consent and how not to rape. I think that your example of a strip club is spot on. Strip clubs not only have women in barely there clothing, but also include complete nudity. If men could not control themselves, we would be hearing about rapes in the clubs all the time.
    I think that because there are so many reason people rape others, like women who wear complete burqas as you discussed, that there isn’t much proof that clothing alone is a cause for rape. When someone is going to carry out rape, the cues you discussed I feel have more to do with that person committing the act. Each person that commits rape seems to have their own motive; she had blond hair, she winked at me or whatever the cue is that made them believe it needed to be done. No one has ever said, “don’t have blond hair, you will get raped.” We say it’s never the victim’s fault and yet we prepare girls to believe they could have done something to prevent the crimes against them. Not to mention, although it’s not as common, women rape men. Does that mean the clothing they were wearing could be blamed for them being raped? I doubt we would ever hear that.

  34. I absolutely agree, and I’m glad that the piece mentions that rapists shift the blame to the victims to push the responsibility off of themselves because it seems like that isn’t brought up enough. There’s no correlation between clothing and rape; women are (unfortunately) assaulted regardless of what they wear. It’s extremely unfair to place blame on the victims, as most victims don’t provoke a rapist, even unintentionally. Victim-blaming is just one more way to pin responsibility on women and force them to be a scapegoat for men’s (though actually I should say “people’s”) crimes.

    I also appreciate that the post uses the example of a strip club to debunk the claim that men are just provoked by revealing clothing. It’s never made sense to me that people claim that women provoke men to rape them while strippers literally work in revealing clothes and aren’t raped by every customer who walks in (there is, however, the very big problem of sexual assault targeting sex workers, but that’s another topic).

    • Yeah, at the strip clubs it’s not like the men are chained to their chairs, is it? They are actually controlling themselves.

      • The strip club argument is a perfect straw man argument. Clearly the men at stripclubs know they are going to ‘get it’ so there is no need for aggression, contrary to a rapist. Besides there’s policies and guidelines within that establishment.

        One things for sure is that there will always be animals out there because these rapists have lost their moral sense and have no rationality. So you must treat them like an animal. i.e. If you’re going through the forest, make sure you’re in gear just in case you’re approached by a grizzly bear. I’m not suggesting that you wear a burqa but be wary with different settings. Minimise risks where possible especially within the vicinity of these animals.

      • The strip club argument is not a strawman at all. You don’t seem to have understood what I was saying.

        Some people believe that women must cover up because men can’t resist raping women who are dressed in a sexy way. The fact that men at strip clubs know they will get into trouble if they try to rape is beside the point. They know that they will be arrested and so they CONTROL THEMSELVES. They aren’t chained down to their chairs and no one is pushing them away from the women. Why? Because men CAN CONTROL THEMSELVES.

  35. It’s tricky that sometimes people correlate dressing code with rape, and rapists always try to blame victim for dressing sexy. It’s so unfair but it’s so often to hear that someone as spectators would say something like “you shouldn’t wear that tight dress” or “the skirt is too short” to victim or girls they know, it’s like suddenly all the responsibility or causes are on women, on victim who been violated and need justice and fairness, and I think it’s also the relate to the reason cause “slut shaming”, especially not only men said that, women would also as the oppressor who also as the oppressed at the same time, so it’s never victim’s fault or cause to be violated. She dresses for pleasure herself because it’s her rights to control her mind and body, and rapists or others who critics them don’t have the rights to force her or control her through violence, and it’s pathetic for people who don’t realize it.

  36. Hello,

    I really consider that this topic sounds ridiculous when you pronounce it, but even more ridiculous that men are trying to justify sexual assault with this. I share all your thoughts up there I think that rapist don’t even care what are you wearing, they are just trying to satisfy their sexual necessities, but in the wrong way. These people have psychological problems and most of them need help because they don’t have the right to decide about anybody’s body, it does not have justification and the words “she provoke me because her skirt was to short” don’t justify the actions and the harm provoked. Women are vulnerable in this kind of thing but is kind of unfair that you have always look around to se if someone is following you or being scare about what are you going to wear because some people say that we provoke the sexual assault by wearing provocative clothes, but as you clearly stated, clothes are not the reason of this, I think that the problem goes beyond.

  37. There have been a couple of cases throughout the past couple of years that caught the eyes of the media. It was cases where a man had raped a woman and blamed it on what she was wearing. There shouldn’t be any correlation between clothing and rape, why do women have to fear of being raped for wearing a certain dress? Society has taught women that what they wear determines whether or not they are going to be raped. The point you made men at strip club’s was very interesting, if wearing “provocative” clothes makes you more likely to be raped and men cant help themselves, then why can men control themselves at strip clubs? Although many women who are dancers do get followed home and are victims of being raped, that does not mean she was asking for it. Another great point was the “bad girl and good girl” mentality, men think all “bad girls” secretly want sex and define that with what a woman is wearing.
    I feel like this all really leads back to when European men started the sexualization of the human anatomy. Seeing naked Amerindian women and came to the conclusion that they needed to be controlled because these men couldn’t control their desires. Women have to deal with this responsibility, not being able to have freedom and wear what they want. At a very young age I was also taught to never look a man in the eyes because that means you want something from them. Clothing does have something to do with why women get raped but it has nothing to do with what she’s actually wearing but what men are taught when they’re young. If we live in a society where the excuse for rape is clothing then this proves we have a lot of fixing to do. There are solutions.

  38. I get frustrated by the idea that it is the woman’s obligation to prevent her rape that somehow the way a woman dresses, how she behaves or how much she drinks determines whether it is rape or not. This thought process is just as harmful to men as it is to women; this notion assumes that men are incapable of self-control. I have a daughter and a son and I believe it is extremely important to teach each child to respect one another, we are all a part of the same human race regardless of our genitals. Our society is only reinforcing the idea that men have no self-control and that women must guard themselves, consider school dress codes, girls have tremendous guidelines that they must abide by and we see story after story of girls sent home for showing cleavage or even wearing leggings, the schools cite that it is distracting to other students, namely boys. Why can’t we teach our young men that women are people too and that the way they dress is not invitation for assault. I don’t care if a woman is walking down the street naked and inebriated it is not an invitation for assault. I hear so man stories of women using different tactics to avoid unwanted attention, pretending to talk on the phone, putting headphone in, stating that they have a boyfriend, I refuse to use these tactics. On a personal note, I was sitting in a bar on a weeknight eating dinner and watching a basketball game, my own personal heaven. Two men walked into the bar and sat next to me, one was obviously severely intoxicated and insisted on buying me a drink, I refused multiple times and then this man decided it was appropriate to place his hand on my low back and begin to move it up the back of my shirt, when I verbally reprimanded him he proceeded to scream and hurl insults at me. I was trying to enjoy a meal and was accosted by this man who felt that because I was alone, I was fair game. These are the kinds of behaviors that need to stop and we as women must stand up for ourselves. Wear what you want, stop making excuses, if you want to be left alone say so, don’t make up an imaginary boyfriend or a fake a phone call, make it loud and clear that this is not acceptable.

  39. The way women dress has nothing to do with the actual cause of rape. Nine out of ten times rape has nothing to do with sex. It has more to do with having dominance over the victim. Men who are willing to force themselves onto someone, taking away their freedom, have a lot more going on in their head than just the desire for sex. They have a mental disorder and they are sick in the head. You can never blame the victim for something like rape, no matter what type of clothing they wear. There may be a correlation between the type of women a rapist may choose but that does not mean that there is causation. People have to take other variables into consideration. The best way to make people understand more about the cause and effect of rape is to educate the public. The only way to get a clear message out to society is informing people starting with the youth.

  40. I completely agree. Women can dress however they wish, and even if it’s just baggy sweatpants and a big sweatshirt, men (and women) still find some reason to think that raping them had something to do with what they wear. Women constantly get blamed for being raped because of what they wear, while men who get raped aren’t taken seriously because “men can’t get raped”. What a person wears is never an invitation to do anything to them. Even if they have next to nothing on, it STILL is not an invitation for people to harass and/or rape them.

  41. I think rape culture can be related to the constant back and forth argument on gun laws. The gun can’t pull it’s own trigger, nor can a woman be “asked” to be raped. I find it foolish when the blame is put on women for being a victim of rape. Biologically, men are naturally physically stronger than women and that is why I believe it can’t really go the other way. If a girl was trying to rape a guy, the guy could easily overpower her and get her to stop. Men that try to justify why they committed the act of rape often try and put the blame on the girl, but I’m sure their mindset would change if they were taken advantage of by a physically more dominant male/female. Coming from the women’s perspective, they may also try and play the victim and use a rape charge against an innocent male. For example, a star high school football player who had multiple division 1 college scholarships lined up was accused of a rape that he didn’t commit. He was falsely convicted and lost all scholarships and had to spend prison time during the prime years of his football career. He was later acquitted but never made it back to football. His name was Brian Banks.

  42. Violence of any sort cannot be condoned in a civil society. It is the rapist’s interpretation of a certain kind of clothing worn by a woman, not the woman’s.

    • Yeah. He needs to change his mind. Not her change her clothes.

      • Sometimes ladies will never understand the psychology of men. If only the blogger was born a male she would see even more of the bigger picture. I mean just from the first paragraph I could tell that this blog was written by a female \(^.^)/

        I’ve read a lot of comments and it’s really interesting how the majority of the female commenters repudiate any correlation whatsoever between clothing and rape…when in fact there is some degree however insignificant it may be.

        They say “guys never understand women” however in cases like this I think its definitely the contrary. Don’t get me wrong I am in no way condoning rape. It is and will always be the his fault!!!

        A friend of mine could have been a potential rapist after seeing one particular individual with a really skimpy attire (Kardashian Type Figure) but thankfully his moral senses got to him and he abstained after remembering that it was somebody’s sister/mom etc. (People believe in Karma ya know)

        I hate to break the ice but some people must recognise that there are SOME CASES out there where it all comes down to her clothing. Yes, even burqas get raped I hear you say which is undeniably true. A notorious rapist will target her as an individual whatever she may be wearing in the alleyway but a new potential rapist just minding his business can get triggered believe it or not.

        Lets be honest if anyone was forced to take the alleyway they would be Modest Muna rather than Vulnerable Victoria. Any sane person would minimise any influence at all costs in that particular scenario.

        Check this video out (few minutes) I think it establishes the naive psychology of men.

        Some Food 4 Thought:

        Nonetheless, Great Blog.

      • I’m glad you like my blog.

        This paragraph you wrote says it all:

        “A friend of mine could have been a potential rapist after seeing one particular individual with a really skimpy attire (Kardashian Type Figure) but thankfully his moral senses got to him and he abstained after remembering that it was somebody’s sister/mom etc. (People believe in Karma ya know)”

        He didn’t do it did he? He was actually able to control himself when he chose to.

        Insisting on modesty is really about trying to control women. And getting women in the habit/mindset of being controlled by other people.

        Did you see this?
        Modesty Objectifies Women Says Nude Egyptian

  43. Rapists will rape anyone who they want and dressing a certain way is less likely the reason why rapists rape.. Or is it?. But what causes it? Appearance? Communication? Body Language?

    a lot of people are just saying rapists rape whoever they want. Sure. but that doesn’t answer the question as to whether what triggers it.

    I want to dive deeper into root problems and talk about cause and effects to certain behaviors.

    This is interesting. Women who go to clubs or majority of women look for the attention and KNOW that dressing a certain way will get them the free drink or exchange of numbers. Women are human too, they crave sex at times just like men.

    With the understanding that women know what turns on men for the most part, women can know that if they dress a certain way it will grab the attention from men regardless if its wanted or NOT wanted.

    I think women should be mindful of what they wear… not because it causes them to get raped no. But on some level It does grab the attention of men, AND can send a lot of signals. Regardless if any woman wants to acknowledge this, Everything we as humans do send signals. By the way we dress, how we present ourselves etc.

    So If a woman chooses to dress skimpy, she 1. she should know what she is doing, what signals she may be sending, and what kind of attention she is drawing to herself. As I said before, women know what attracts men, so if she is dressing a certain way, it can attract men to her regardless if its wanted or not, she can’t really complain that she is being hit on or whatever. She can complain but on some level she is attracting it to herself.

    I am not including the men who are just animals and will talk and approach anyone. But to insinuate that a woman should be able to just walk around naked and not be bothered…. in a perfect world of women only…Sure. But we live in a world with millions of people with different personalities and temperaments and because of that, a woman can not just wear what she wants esp if she is aware that what she may wear can attract men to her.

    I dont think its subject to women. ANYONE can not just wear what they want. In some areas of the united states, if you just so happen to be wearing the wrong Color… you may attract some negative mess towards you involving gangs. This happens all the time. People get killed, shot because they were wearing the wrong colors in the wrong area. It does happen.

    So its safe to say, women, if you wear skimpy clothing, you cant just expect that everything will be fine all the time. In a perfect world sure. But nothing about this world is perfect. And what you choose to wear can influence some people to approach you.

    Sure women get approached when they aren’t dressing skimpy I know this. Many possibilities for many different situations. Women get approached when I dress sexy or not. Not an excuse to dress skimpy if you already know what it attracts.

    Maybe someone is watching a woman dress skimpy which is sending signals that maybe she wants to be approached or maybe she wants to get laid or hit on. ( I already addressed that a lot of women know what attracts men and will dress how they want regardless of what signals it sends) and a man will approach her for that reason, its possible in a scenario that man may not approach her because shes not sending that signal hes looking for.

    Same thing about dating sites. Lots of women enjoy showing skin, or showing their body off for many different reasons, and will turn around and shame the men that comment or ask for sex. In many cases, if a person doesnt present themselves as a sex thing or sex object its a strong possibility that you will not be treated, looked at like one. Again not including the men who will just sexually assault anything that moves. but for people like that its not IMPOSSIBLE for the way someone dress to influence even the crazy sexually assault anything that moves type men. Yea people should control themselves, but again. Not everyone is balanced, doesnt make it okay. But just saying it can happen.

    If i had a daughter I would tell her also be mindful of what you wear. Why.. because you dont want to send the wrong signals to guys. OR whoever.

    To say women dont influence situations in her life based off of how she dresses… maybe maybe not. I think it does have some influence in it. Even if its a little, I dont think its something that should just be brushed to the side and ignored.

    No one should be raped and its always the rapists fault for touching or moving forward on someone without their consent. however women should be mindful of how they look.

    • Sorry it took me a while to get back on this. When I see super long comments I sometimes put them off. And this time it got lost. See my comment policy

      Here’s the thing, expecting women to dress a certain way is about men controlling women.

      It doesn’t matter what a woman wears, it doesn’t actually cause a rape. As I mentioned in the post, at strip clubs women are completely naked and yet the men aren’t chained to their chairs. They are choosing not to rape. Similarly, in some middle eastern societies Women are told to cover up because of the hair might cause a man to rape a woman. Yet we know from experience that this is not the case.

      Nothing a woman wears causes rape.

      • I agreed with you. However, are you saying the way women dress has Zero influence on anything? does it not send any signals at all?

        Let’s analyze strip clubs. I strongly feel that women dont get abused in stripclubs Simply because there are rules about the establishment. You cant just say just because it doesn’t happen in a strip club means it has no influence. No really. The reason is because if you simply Touch a stripper you get kicked out. The rules are strict. Don’t touch and you can stay, touch and you are out.

        and believe it or not. Some men still touch. key factor. It still happens. (hold on to this thought)

        Another thing. some strip clubs you CAN touch, touching and groping is allowed. Some times sex.

        Same thing about the middle east. Yes women are told to cover everything which can greatly influence any interaction from men. However it still happens. Does it happen as much as if the woman isn’t wearing much? I would assume NO. but to be fair we dont have numbers to verify that which is fine.

        My point, both cases strip club and the middle east cannot be used as a key factor of evidence because one has rules as an establishment. And the other, its in a different culture, and we dont know the ratio of women being raped and women not being raped.

        However I can ask. When a woman dresses skimpy does it not influence anything? Does it NOT send any signals.

        and set aside the people who rape. what about the men who dont rape. Do they not feel urges? yea they may NOT act on it but whos to say that men dont feel urges based off of what they see.

        and women who rape men. Do they rape unattractive (i know thats suggestive to perception)

        how do we know its not saying people rape because of whats accessable in oppose to what they would rather prefer?

        This is interesting and I think its deeper than what is being talked about. but to say the way women dress has no influence on anything.

        And In my previous post, I stated that it applies to everyone, the way you look and present yourself can send signals.

      • Clothing sends signals. But clothing is never the real cause of rape. That most of man might be looking for an excuse. But the same guys will say “She looked at me… She smiled at me…” So should women not look at a man or smile at a man because that might trigger him? Or should he take responsibility for himself. And particularly, deal with his underlying issues that lie at the root of why he attacks.

  44. Great article Ms. Platts! In reading this article, I most certainly agree with the idea that society places too much emphasis on “clothing/attire” when rape occurs. The evidence of clothing not necessarily being a major factor in your article really convinced me that clothing is almost irrelevant when looking at rape cases. Nonetheless, I do believe that society should place their concerns and focus more on the potential motives behind rape occurring considering that rape is NEVER the victim’s fault. Motives such as the desire to feel powerful, to demonstrate their “manhood”, being aroused through sadistically bringing sex and violence together, or by seeking to harm an entire race, community or nation by using sexual assault as a political weapon are all valid motives behind rape. So instead of placing so much emphasis on women’s clothing, I truly believe that society should be more educated on men’s psychological motives versus the fabric covering a woman.

  45. I never made the connection between provocative clothing and the work provoke before reading this article but it makes it even more interesting to me. I loved the way you said it, “Interesting that “provocative” is used to describe a style of dress, suggesting that clothes actually provoke something. Attention? Desire? Rape?” How can people actually use that and believe it is a valid excuse, it really is mind boggling. When you talked about rapist being interviewed and some of the examples they mentioned I really feel that it often lies in the power issue. Men who see women as beneath them and are angry that women are becoming more progressive may be feeling threatened and they need a way to blame women when they are caught. I recently watched a program on the network Viceland where a woman interviewed some men who lived in the Middle East. She interviewed them after a prayer service and asked about women being raped in their community. One of the men talked about women walking around after dark “inviting rape” upon themselves especially if they weren’t fully covered. He went on to blame it on the women by saying that they tempt men and that if they just stayed inside and covered with their husbands that they wouldn’t be getting raped. In the Democratic Republic of Congo women are raped as an “act of war.” And what is the difference between men who rape women and men who do not. Is it their cultural background? Is it societies influence on them? Is it that they are mentally sick people? I think there would have to be something terribly wrong with someone who could commit such a violent and awful crime against another human being. The worst part is that a lot of women do end up believing it their fault. This is I’m sure connected to how rape is treated. We just saw a perfect example in the case right here in Santa Clara County where Brock Turner was in jail for a disgustingly short amount of time and sent home to be on house arrest and speak to people about his experience as his “punishment.” Meanwhile the women he is accused of raping will spend the rest of her life dealing with the trauma of something horrible happening to her. And what were his excuses? He was too intoxicated? That can’t possibly excuse rape. I hope that the outcry that we saw against the judge who sentenced Brock Turner can keep up momentum and lead to changes in the future prosecution of men convicted of sexual assault crimes. It can’t continue to be a crime punishable by a slap on the wrist.

  46. I absolutely believe that the way a woman dresses does not mean that she is “asking for it.” When I decide that I want to dress up and go out with friends, I’m not dressing up to get the attention of guys or even other girls. I’m dressing up because it makes me feel good about myself at the end of the day. One other thing that this makes me think about is the fact that sometimes girls don’t want to wear certain things because it will give men the wrong impression. It’s so sad that a girl can feel and look beautiful and then completely change her outfit because she may be seen as a sexual object instead of an average woman who just wants to look and feel beautiful. I also think that males need to start seeing women as women instead of just some sexual object that doesn’t deserve any respect. I think that if men began to think about their actions, for example, thinking about how they would feel if something like rape happened to their sister, or mother, or even a friend, they would realize that it is a horrific thing to put someone through.

  47. I remember one time I was at work and this gentleman and I started speaking about women dressing “provocatively”. He said that women don’t have self respect when they dress with short shorts and crop tops because they are showing the world what they should be showing to their man behind closed doors. I gave him an example, I told him to picture it like a cake on a display shelf. You can look at the cake, the cake looks pleasing, and such but you can’t touch the cake until you buy the cake. I think this was the simplest comparison I could give him because he kept insisting it was the women’s fault that they were raped or molested.
    I feel like men aren’t put in that situation where they have to dress in a certain way to get out of being raped so women shouldn’t either. I find it very frustrating when mom’s have to tell their daughters to not wear certain clothes because they are too “provocative”, yet the boys can wear whatever they please. Instead of teaching the girls to not wear “provocative” outfits we should teach the boys about consent and respect towards women.

  48. In this day and age with the over sexualization of the women bodies, men tend to depersonalize women in any type of outfits such as miniskirts, yoga pants and even sweatpants. In other words, anything women wear these days is used to objectify their bodies. The way people dress is a form of expression, style and identity. Women’s outfits shouldn’t provoke or cause any type of horrific act such as rape. Rape is defined as such as an unlawful sexual activity and usually sexual intercourse carried out forcibly or under threat or injury against the will. Any type of sexual act should be consensual meaning all parties involved should agree on it and should be conscious. It shouldn’t happen between an adult and a minor either. The way women dress or flirt with men shouldn’t be a factor or reason to get assaulted. Society tries to put the blame on women by qualifying certain dresses or outfits as provocative. Nothing can and should justify a rape not even a so called “provocative” dress. Of course with the over sexualization of the women’s bodies, some men would get excited or have some sexual desires at the sight of a woman wearing that type of dresses. However they shouldn’t act on their fantasies unless the women agree. It is never the victim’s fault. The aggressor is the one to blame for not being able to control his impulses.

  49. It’s not the woman’s fault that she is raped! Nor is it a man’s fault if he is raped. The culprits always say that “they were asking for it” and people such as the recently popular Brock Turner, were given light sentences because he was young, successful, and was just having “a bit of fun” and it was a mistake. They act as if the woman who was sexually assaulted didn’t matter and that because of her, this Stanford student’s life would be ruined based off of “one mistake”. Excuses will always be made to cover up for unforgivable acts of rape or assault. Women should feel free to dress however they want, but they are seen provocative because their body parts are represented as parts that are associated with reproduction and nurturing, such as their breasts and butt. Yet, it is seen as normal when men walk around shirtless, and aren’t stopped by police for it. People need to be aware that without women in the world, there would be no men. People should learn how to control themselves and learn about how society is supposed to function with women around them rather than forcing themselves upon them in acts of showing power.

  50. I agree with everything in this blog. The women dress should not the the blame for her being raped. Women should be able to dress however makes them most comfortable, and if that means showing some leg or even showing some cleavage then why not be allowed to and be shamed for it? Men are attracted to women mostly by what they see first, they see a women showing her legs and they find that attractive. If they see her showing cleavage I would say they would be even more attractive, but that doesn’t give them the go ahead to rape her. She just wants to look attractive even if its just for herself. Like you mentioned strippers are dancing on a stage half naked and sometimes even fully naked and men are paying to see that but those same men aren’t raping them. I think it is a mental instability that will cause a man to want to rape a women because of what she is wearing, but then again her clothing usually has nothing to do with the reason and they just have other motives.

  51. Women are free to dress however they please, it does not mean they are trying to get raped. Why is it that women’s clothing is always seen as something sexual, and men’s clothing is not? Why do we keep objectifying everything for women? I know men are also raped, but how come we never say that he was raped because his clothing made him look too provocative? It does not make sense. We live in the United States where laws were made for people to be free, so women should be free to wear whatever they want, and men should learn to control themselves.

  52. Reading this I can’t help but think to when my mom constantly warns me not to wear a skirt or a v neck shirt just to make sure i will be ok, even till this day she still warns me not to wear that or this but i can’t help but think are the clothes i have on really saying I WANT RAPE or PLEASE RAP ME? I mean if you look on tv there are girls that have on less than me. Are they asking for it to? Can men really not control themselves? Does a young girl have to be thought that she can’t ware what she wants because she will get rape? Is this really what society has come to

  53. I completely agree, women have the same right to dress and express themselves how ever they would like as any man in this world. sad reality is that men will rape women no matter what they look like because its not a matter of looks but of circumstances. people have grown in different cultures and settings that some of us wouldn’t understand. There have been many cases where children grow up in a family where the father constantly abused of them violently and start to think that rape and violence towards women is okay. Cultures all over the world believe in the male dominance and rule over women, sometimes causing the men to “punish” women by rape and violence if they don’t listen to men. And then there are the men who are just idiots that are drunk or high and just wanted to have fun. Rape is never okay no matter where you were born or raised.

  54. I completely agree with what is being said in this entry. The way a women dresses is no excuse for someone to sexually assault them. There are many other factors that play into the act of rape that have nothing to do with how a women dresses or how she might look or act. A victim of rape should not feel any worse than they already feel because others think that they shouldn’t have been dressed a certain way or shouldn’t have been out late etc. The fact that people are putting the blame on the rape victim is only contributing to the rape culture that already exists. It is just making it easier for that person to get away with rape and for rape becoming a more common action. What a woman chooses to wear should have no correlation with rape because men should learn that it is not okay to act on an impulse and rape someone because they were excited by the way they dressed. Instead they should learn to control themselves and make sure rape is not an option for these kind of situations.

  55. While clothing can be a representation of the person who decides to put the outfit on, the outcome from viewing someone wearing something specific (i.e. bathing suit=swimming or possibly laundry day) should never exceed mere thoughts in one’s own mind about what the person might be trying to convey. Sexy clothing, to me, may say that the person wants to appear sexy, but by no means does it say anything more and since we all have different interpretations of absolutely everything in this world, no one can ever be sure anyway; the woman may not even interpret her dress as sexy but simply nice. In addition, no clothing has ever existed on this planet that instructs anyone to take any type of action whatsoever so the “her tube top was talking to me” defense is weaker than dollar store toilet tissue. I believe that any act of violence first begins from the entitled feelings that say to the criminal that this is an acceptable way to conduct oneself. Afterwards, from fear of suffering the consequences of their own unprovoked wrongdoing, they search to find a stigma that the world has already set into rotation with hopes that people will accept that very “reason” as a viable excuse. Rape, specifically, carries an even more offensive nature than say stealing someone’s car because it seeks to degrade the victim and render them powerless/helpless. I’ve never known clothing to ignite such a feeling, but I have known the cold and careless attitude of a person when they feel superior to another; they are the one to blame.

  56. Brian Neumann

    Some of this information should have been given to Brock Turner. A great point brought up in this post was that if enticing women would lead to the conclusion of ‘I’ve got to rape her,’ “all men would be rapists. Yet few are.” Rape is more so about feeling powerful, or proving one’s “manhood.” For many men, consensual sex is the most attractive and pleasing form of sex. Therefore, we cannot blame women for their victimization! We have to teach boys the seriousness of rape. Also, if we cannot change the current conception of the male gender role, at least teach them that rape is not a justifiable action to prove one’s “manhood,” or feel powerful. A solution to that would be punishing men always and severely for having committed this crime. An important factor that has perpetuated rape culture is that rape has too often been justified and the victim blamed for their own victimization.

  57. Why wearing what you want should make you a victim of rape? Women should be able to wear what they want without having to feel intimidated by men or predators. It is very unfair, men are allowed to wear what they are pleased to and women are blamed for wearing outfits that they feel confident and beautiful in. Women shouldn’t feel like prisoners in their own skin because of fearing they will be attacked. I feel like we should be able to feel good about ourselves in our comfortable clothing without being judged by people. For an example wearing a nice dress for a dinner date, it’s too revealing for the date and he feel he is going to score a homerun with her? Some men find that women are selling their bodies when they aren’t. Rapist feel they are powerful and in control of a woman when they aren’t.

  58. After reading this I am extremely disturbed by what the excuses that cause rape has become. As a woman, I believe I have the right to wear whatever I please no matter how revealing or unrevealing the attire. Rape has nothing to do with what we are wearing or how we present ourselves as women. I’m tired of women being judged for every decision they chose to make and get blamed for it. Nobody asks to get sexually assaulted. It is the RAPISTS fault. They CHOSE to make the decision that they did and they should be aware of the consequences that follow. It is such a shame to still hear that people believe that the victim is at fault. It was her fault because she dressed provocatively, it was her fault because she was drunk, it was her fault because she looked at me and smiled. When will this mindset ever change? No woman will ever say that they wanted to get raped.

  59. Trang-Thuy Mai

    I fully agree that just because a woman a wearing a dress or skirt does not mean she is saying that she wants to have sex or be raped. Clothing should have nothing to do with men and their rights to saying they want to rape women. I believe this is just another excuse to justify a man’s actions of raping. Women shouldn’t have to be afraid to dress in exposed clothing if they wanted to. I also notice that there are a high number of girls who go to raves and festival wearing very little clothing, but they are there to have fun. However, I’ve heard of stories where guys have agitated and sexual harassed these girls. This sort of action should not be blamed on the girls and their choice of clothing, but it is the guys responsibility to respect these girls and keep their hands to themselves.

    • This reminds me that women are often kept out of fraternity parties unless they dress sexy enough. And since fraternities often control a social life, the women often conform. But then if they get raped, It is the women’s fault because they were dressing sexy.

  60. I find the topic of whether women provoke rape by their style of dress a topic I’ve been defending my whole life. First, I think this article bring up an excellent point being, rape is NEVER the victims fault. The other day I was discussing the way women dress could provoke rape with my father and grandfather. To them it does, it was a women’s fault that she was raped because her skirt was too short. I watched a video the other day, about a girl defending women who were raped. She went into detail that she was tired of being the one to worry about rape, and instead we should teach our young boys rape is like murder. Just plain not okay not matter what. I don’t think modest will protect you. I’m proof of that. When I was in a abusive relationship, it was the time of life where I dressed extremely modest. Yet I had never been more taken advantage by a man before. If I showed this article to a lot of people, I know what their response would be unfortunately. From the time of elementary school we highly press dress code on young girls to give them the message with sexy clothing you will not be safe from men. I think this needs to change, from the time of elementary school we should be telling boys sexual assault is far from acceptable. The “slutty” dress cop out for people has to go. By saying that its like saying since she had blonde hair and that turned him on, she was raped. We are letting women’s choice and individuality disappear with this idea.

    • In a world where men are privileged, you end up blaming women for their own victimization. And when you are used to seeing the world that way you can be oddly blind to how crazy this is.

  61. Rape is never the victim’s fault. It does not matter what a person is wearing, their choice of clothing did not “provoke” anyone to rape them. In any case, it is really uncommon for men to rape women who just happens to walk by on the street. The truth is majority of victims know who raped them. I agree with what you said that men do not rape women because they need or want to have sex with them…it is a showcase of manhood and dominance. However, forcing oneself onto someone and taking advantage of them is a sad excuse to feel dominant over someone.

    • Good point about men not being able to resist raping a woman was walking down the street. Of course they’re able to resist. They resist ready much 100 percent of the time. (Like if anyone else is on street.)

  62. I agree completely. Dressing provocatively does not cause rape. The men are the ones who go after the women thinking they can because they are men. They think they have some sort of right to want and have women because they are men. Even in schools, sending girls home because they are showing too much skin or distracting the male students is stupid. All boys/men should be taught to control themselves or to understand and appreciate a woman’s’ body. Not sexualize it and have some skin distract them from focusing. Since girls can’t show a lot of skin, then why can boys not wear a shirt and it be okay? They wear tank tops to class, do their arms not distract girls? Can their legs not distract girls? This double standard continues to be everywhere. As much as we say it’s not, people still prioritize the education and work environment of the guys. If this generation or generations to come do not change the way men look at women there is going to be a serious problem. Slut shaming will continue even though girls are just wearing normal clothing. Guys will not stop raping because they are not taught to control themselves. They see who they want and they go after them. It’s not the clothing, its how they were brought up and by society.

  63. Diederik de Groot

    In my opinion, Women never deserve to be raped no matter how scantily clad the women is. I have seen many times men who were nothing more that just a pair of shorts when they go running. They came in all shapes and sizes. I blame this on the stereotypes that I grew up with. I think that it isn’t the provocative dress choice but the choice of the rapist to rape the woman who decided to dress provocatively. I also blame clothing companies who reinforce this provocative clothing by making clothes that are very revealing. I find it frustrating that men can dress half nude and be seen as sexy and they are not asking for sex, but as soon as it changes genders all of a sudden it is being seen as an ad for sex or rape.

  64. Reblogged this on Truth Troubles: Why people hate the truths' of the real world and commented:
    There is no excuse for anyone raping anyone. It is called self control, learn it, teach it, grow the hell up.

  65. Freedom of expression is not responsible for rapist mentality, yet even in our evolved human era; rapists, paedophiles and baser-instinct anthropoids protest otherwise to justify criminal offending – liberated societies unable to comprehend their skewered type of perspective of how it is that provocative attire triggers negative response, qualified psychoanalysts often-times report such offending behaviours down to childhood trauma/abuse.

    As a survivor of abuse myself, my own individuality suppressed, cannot agree that sexual offenders commit crimes based purely upon lack of human empowerment; provocative clothing or something similar, yet more precisely upon (uninterrupted) psychological dysfunction where inappropriate sexual advances tolerated. A great many abuse survivors never go on to commit sexual offences, myself included.

    At the very same time however, I do not like seeing younger members of society being influenced in their clothing choices by aggressive media advertising for the very reason that it assuages negative response, not just in sexual offenders yet also in regular concerned adult generations who fear for the safety of younger people – their less informed vulnerability as developing individuals, not always carefully considered by fashion hounds, that do not live in divided communities where enlightened and disadvantaged groups live side by side, with differing moral and political values/beliefs – freedom of expression subject to varying degrees of tolerance within these communities where one-size doesn’t fit all.

    Out of personal choice I dress far more clothed than not, and perhaps as a direct response to my childhood abuse, yet also left me massively very conscious of human exposure on the whole, and never able to feel okay about revealing myself or seeing anyone else doing it, even though I respect people’s choices. I wonder what classification of person I then fall into here as someone who supports freedom of expression in its entirety yet equally agoraphobic of physical exhibitionism?.

    • I’m so sorry that you had to go through that trauma.

      I don’t know how to classify you other than as traumatized and seeking to cover up as a means of feeling protected. So by all means, if that makes you feel better you should do so.

      I mentioned that there are a number of different motivations that rapists have. But trying to create a sense of being powerful does seem to lie behind each of them to some degree. And yet it doesn’t create any real power, It just makes things worse and has hugely damaging effects on the victims/survivors and every one who loves them.

  66. Mehtab Bhinder

    I definitely agree with this article. I feel as though most if not all rapists have a superiority complex where they feel the need to violate another individual’s body in order to prove that they are superior. Living in a society where a woman’s “innocence” or value is based on how she preserves her body I feel as if taking that away is the ultimate form of dominance because you are taking something of great value away from someone. I also feel that rapists use flirty clothing as an excuse or justification for their rape when there is really an underlying issue about control. Rape isn’t about the sex, it’s about domination and having the power to subdue someone else.

    • Rapists have an inferiority/superiority complex. They feel like they should be superior, But they actually feel inferior, so they try to create a Bridge to that sense of superiority/power that they crave.

  67. I always have HATED that some try to portray rape as being the women’s fault for dressing a certain way. I think it is insane that some people can actually believe that. I have always wondered why it is pressed that “women should cover up, or else they risk the chance of rape” versus teaching young males, “women are not yours to do whatever you want to, do not rape”. I think this just shows how we as a people have such backwards thinking about subjects involving women. Something absolutely horrible happens to a women, and it is somehow partly her fault? That is so wrong and very upsetting. As a male I know that no matter how a female is dressed, the thought of rape would never cross my mind. Hearing male rapists use that as an excuse is such a cop out and the fact that many believe it is disgusting.

  68. James Tuakalau

    I love this blog because it covers a good portion of defending its point of it is completely okay for women to show a little cleavage. But I feel the core problem is a debate that’s been going on a for a while, that is if watching Pornography is aiding in aggressive sexual behavior. I bet if you were to ask any of those charged with rape if they have ever been heavily into pornography, more than 60% would admit that at one point in their life they have been. In today’s world where sex is given at a price and likewise to view sex via cyber is given at a price and at times free. It’s hard to distinguish what’s real and what’s fantasy. Say you have someone walking down the street with a mini skirt or cleavage showing and a male individual sees this and what message do you think it gives off? I know for a fact that the norm is for a guy to stare and think of two things, admire her beauty or second usually those who watches porn, sit and fantasize of sexual acts with the individual. I challenge any male who will tell me otherwise that these two things don’t run through their minds. I think writer James Allen said it best that, “what a man thinketh so is he.” fantasizing is the first action towards rape. So I conclude by stating that yes you may think it’s okay to show a little cleavage here and there but just know you are at fault for fueling the fantasy juices that sparks the action of rape. So my suggestion the more safety the better.

    • Odd that you love this post. Since you didn’t get the point at all.

      Almost all men watch porn. But hardly any of them rape. And women wear clothing that reveals their legs and cleavage all the time, and the vast majority of them don’t get raped. And many women are completely covered up — even in burqas — and still get raped.

      It makes no sense to blame victims for the actions of those who choose to harm. It simply takes responsibility away from criminals. And makes it easier for them to attack because the victim is the one who gets blamed.

      It also speaks of a desire to control women — by telling them what they can and cannot wear. And create a sense of male superiority because men can wear whatever they want, but women had better do what they are told — or else!

  69. I think the point made about situations in which men are actually able to control themselves is a really important one. I have heard the argument countless times that men are biologically wired to want to have sex with a woman so badly that they have no control over their own behavior. This of course just serves to eliminate any responsibility on their side of the situation…how convenient. A rapist is always going to find a way to pin the responsibility of their actions on their victim. And this has become so readily accepted by our society. Victim blaming is so prevalent in our culture. I hear it so often among my peers. And yet it really makes no sense at all. I unfortunately have friends who have been victims of sexual assault, and the assaults occurred in varying situations, and my friends were dressed in varying types of outfits, some not revealing in the least. Bottom line, sexual assault can never be the victim’s fault, because no one is responsible for another’s actions except themselves. I wish victim blaming wasn’t such a dominant way to view rape in our society.

  70. You’ve made some good points and really summarized it well. I feel so strongly about this topic because it really bugs me that some men think that the way that a women dresses is the way they will act towards that women. For example in the summer its so hard to wear something cute but that covers your body but also is thin since its hot I once wore a dress without straps and many men approached me in a way that I have never been talked to before and it made me think, is it because of the way I dressed? and I realized….. NO just because of the way any women dresses should not be an excuse for a man to rape a women.

  71. I totally agree with everything you’ve said in this post, and wish that more people would understand this point of view. So many rape myths justify this type of violence in our culture. One huge thing that comes to mind is the twisting of gender roles. Rape perpetuates the idea that a female’s role is to be a passive receptors of male aggression. This viewpoint ultimately leads to the promotion of a sexist society.

    Why is it that when a woman speaks out about sexual violence, the first thing that comes to mind is the victim’s part in it, rather than the aggressor’s? Rather than punishing a man for his actions, society tends to first wonder what the woman did to perpetuate such violence. This is just one result of the socialization process that justifies rape and sexual violence against women.

  72. People don’t rape clothes they rape people. And a lot of people forget that a lot of men and society have conditioned women to think that dressing more conservatively will save them from that fate but in reality if someone is a rapist they will rape anyone not just women who dress more scandalously. Another thing I like to mention is that women should be able to express themselves in any fashion not to be confined to conservative mindset and attire.

  73. Jennifer Malcolm

    One could be completely naked, that doesn’t mean that they are waving a flag that says “No consent necessary!”

    Rape and assault occurs in so many different situations it’s hard to pinpoint why it happens. Oftentimes it can be that two people are using drugs or alcohol. It can be that you were hooking up and the guy or woman changed their mind. It can happen on the street by a complete stranger. There’s also the use of GHB and Rohypnol that a person could go around an entire party lacing people’s drinks in hopes of taking one of them home.

    Most situations involve consent whether people are drinking or no matter what you may be doing. A woman could be flirting with you, looking attractive, using non-verbal communication but that doesn’t mean that a conversation isn’t necessary to establish what you both are looking for. It’s about if you are attracted to the other person, not taking advantage of them to satisfy your own needs. Being really honest with each other about what you are wanting out of a date, or even before you hook up at a party.

    The other situations like people have stated, have to do with a person wanting to conflict violence upon another human being. I don’t believe that anything could have prevented it in that case. If a person is that removed from their own conscious, what could honestly stop them from doing what they want to do?

    I would also agree that it’s displacing the blame. If you see an extremely attractive person wearing tight clothing or whatever they are wearing, it comes down to personal self- control and respect for other people.

  74. Does Provocative dress cause rape?

    No, I don’t think in most cases a rape victim was chosen because how they are dressed. I believe it to be someone that they feel they could over power. I am not even sure if it is sexual. I do understand that in some cases it could cause someone to lust and maybe even attack, but so many give it up for free that there is no need for someone to rape for sex. I had an incidence when I was about 15, my friends brother tried to attack me I was fully dressed. I went to her house and he answered the door. He told me she was in the room and before I knew it he had me on the ground and I was fighting for dear life.Thank goodness he had a struggle trying to get anything off of me before someone walked in and he let me up. I think if I had on a snow suit he still would have attacked.

    • Rape is always about power. Although there can be a sexual component — sadistic rapist can only get aroused if the person there with is suffering. But it’s not just that he was aroused by what was wearing. Is this suffering, not the clothing that get him going. Or, it is a pleasurable way to feel powerful. But clothing never causes rape.

  75. Results from the 5-Why Analysis carried out indicated that individuals emotional display is one of the factors that contribute to this.
    Sometimes when a woman releases her positively-lured emotion through her provocative dressing,her smiles,talks etc,this creates in men,a driving emotions/force which can be controlled depending on your influential power.If not well controlled, and the woman tries to resist him would result into raping cos the man would use his power without her consent.
    Generally, if you think that your mode of dressing or display is generating an unfriendly feedback,why don’t you review it and be SAFETY CONSCIOUS?.

    • But it’s not really about the dress. If it were then strippers would be in grave danger every time they got on the floor. Men can definitely control themselves.

      Telling women what to wear is a way of gaining control over them, and getting women used to a mindset that they must do what others tell them to do. It also turns them into sex objects, constantly having to worry that they are provoking men by how they present themselves. It’s not healthy for anyone.

  76. What Women wear or do not wear should not be the reason behind why they should be raped or not. It’s never the victims fault, even if she is showing a little leg, or cleavage. Raping someone isn’t an option it’s an action that someone chooses to do. Those who choose to do it are doing it to feel a certain power and feel manly. We’ve always been taught on how to “avoid” rape by walking with someone when it gets dark outside, or not showing too much skin when you go out. But, does this really “avoid” rape? No. It’s been seen on the news that victims who have been raped have varied on age, and none of them were being “provocative”. Women should be able to feel safe with whatever they’re wearing, no matter if its a short dress or some simple sweats. Everyone is in control of their own bodies and actions.

  77. A woman’s dress should not be blame for rape. A dress is a dress as simple as that.

    We live in a culture that has low regards for women. Women are used as sex objects dressed in provocative clothing or showing most of their skins in commercials, magazines and advertisements where women supposing possessed sexuality that are either given to men or taken by men. Women are paid less for their work, women are seen as stayed at home mom who do all the housework and cooking to please their men. In order to minimize the number of rapes occurrences we need to change how we teach our children and our biases against women. Women should be treated as equal, girls should be taught to do as boys do or capable of in terms of their strength, capabilities and rights to be treated equal. Our society today is not mentally healthy therefore the occurrences of rapes due to the mind set that men have of women.

  78. I think that what a victim is wearing when she was assaulted has absolutely nothing to do with why the attacker picked her, and I think any rapist that says that is lying as well. It has everything to do with the vulnerability of a girl and the girl who is the smallest risk to the attacker. Blaming what a woman is wearing is is just a cover up to the deeper issues at hand. It is very upsetting though that people seem to use that as an excuse for why a woman is attacked because clothing is nothing more than an expression of an individuals creativity and personality, NOT an invitation to sex or a message that she wants sex.

  79. People always say that dressing provocatively is not safe, and can result in rape if you end up in the wrong place at the wrong time. I have never agreed with that commonly accepted notion, because this places the blame on the victim and not the perpetrator. It also attempts to combat assault and rape by not really dealing with the core of the issue, which is obviously the rapist and whatever complexes he or she may have which causes them to commit such a violent crime. Society teaches women how to not get raped – don’t walk alone at night, don’t wear revealing clothes, keep your keys in hand when walking to your vehicle because you become vulnerable to attacks while rummaging through your purse. These are all such commonplace practices that women do in order to avoid being raped. I think the conversation about rape needs to shift from teaching women how to protect themselves to teaching men to not rape. We need to teach men that they are not entitled to women’s bodies, and that they are not free to express their sexual desires in whatever way they want because it’s “natural”. Luckily most men do know these things and would never rape anyone, but these ideas still need to be reinforced so that it is common knowledge to all.

  80. I believe clothes can lead to rape because I know that dressing like that causes temptation in men. I think even girls are wanting men to look at them with crazy eyes fantasizing about what if. I say this because I am a guy and I know how hard it would be to control myself but there are some guys who cannot

    • Hmmmm,

      You say that you can control yourself, so how do you know that some men can’t?

      Men who go to strip clubs control themselves even though the women are naked. The men aren’t chained down to chairs as they watch the strippers.

      In non-sexist cultures rape is pretty much nonexistent, even when the women go topless in some of those societies (see the Indians of America’s East Coast).

      And in cultures where you have high levels of rape and sexual harassment, you have strongly patriarchal societies. In Egypt, the more women cover themselves up, the higher the level of street harassment and rape. (In the 1960s women didn’t cover up so much and they were also free to walk the streets without harassment.)

      Rape and sexual harassment are really about controlling women. Telling them what they can wear and where they can go. As in, “Stay inside or you will be raped or harassed!” Or “Wear what I tell you to or you will be raped!”

      Worse, rape is the crime that women most fear other than murder. So the woman or girl goes through the trauma of rape and then she gets blamed for it, adding more trauma.

      In the Middle East women are blamed because “You let a little bit of the hair from your head show, no man can resist!” In the United States it is, “You let a little bit of leg show, or your cleavage!” It’s your fault!

      So men get off the hook, making rape more likely.

      And men like you probably don’t even care. So sad.

  81. No i do not think that the way that a women dress should change the fact that a man or boy choose to do what they did to that young lady women and girls, should be allowed to wear whatever they feel is right. Or what they choose to wear to express them selves and who they are.

  82. It is so sickening that we still live in a world where women are blamed for being raced, and the blame does not stop there but the criticism continues by placing an attack on what they decided to wear. Of course women dress to impress rather that is to impress others or simply to feel confident in themselves but it does not mean that they are causing men to feel as though they are no control over themselves. Regardless of rather or not women decide to wear “sexy” clothing, they are not asking to get abused or rape. This is just an ignorant way of thinking because it has to credibility and no women would ever want to feel that type of terror, pain, and vulnerability.

  83. Yahaira Arreola-Rodriguez

    I know from past research that many rape victims were not dressed provocatively when they were attacked. I believe that women should be free to dress how they want, regardless of someone else’s potential reaction. Just because someone is wearing a short skirt or baring a lot of skin does not mean that someone should take advantage of that person. Dressing in a certain manner does not mean that it is okay for that person to be raped. No one ever really “asks” to be raped. As the popular sayings reads “DON’T JUDGE A BOOK BY ITS COVER”! Nobody, regardless of his/her choice of garments, should be raped. Women need to understand that they should not have to feel like they need to dress a certain way. But, if they do dress provocatively, they are not asking to be raped, but they sure are putting themselves in danger, needlessly. It is society that is telling women and men that women are only sex on legs and not actual people with their own agency. Women are told to dress provocatively or they are prudes and unfashionable; their entire being is just sex, made only to please men. In addition, men are taught that women are only good for one thing.
    Overall, I believe that dressing provocatively is seen as asking for attention but not asking to be raped.

  84. No i do not feel as though a piece of clothing should define weather you are raped or not. And if thats the cause for some of these young lades getting raped i don’t feel as though people would even look at their clothing and think oh I’m going to rape her because her dress is to short or her skirt is to small. That should never determine anything about a young lady because i personally wear revealing things at times but that should never make a man want to do something that extreme.

  85. Diane Perez Arredondo

    This has become a big problem in society. When I went to high school their was a dress code which included not wearing shorts shorter than your finger tips and shirt straps had to be three fingers wide. One day I wore a shirt that was a spaghetti strap and I didn’t think I looked provocative or anything. I wouldn’t of had worn the shirt in the first place if I thought I looked provocative. While I was walking to lunch I got stopped by the vice principle and was told that my shirt’s straps were not wide enough. So I had to change my shirt to my P.E. shirt. I did not agree with that rule I felt like anybody, especially girls, were allowed to wear anything they wanted. I did not like the fact that I had to limit my dress options or worry what to wear because of being scared to get in trouble by the teachers because I was “too much of a detraction for the boys”. Its sad the fact that girls get blamed for their own rape because of how they were dressed or how friendly they are.

  86. This article is extremely important because, sadly, victims of sexual assault are still hugely blamed for their assaults. I am reading a book right now called “Asking for it: The alarming rise of rape culture– and what we can do about it.” In the book, the author talks about case after case of the victim being blamed, but unfortunately, victims are not only blamed by friends or family or random people. They are also blamed by the police, and by the judges in court. When you go to report a sexual assault to the police, they tend to ask you what you were wearing and whether or not you were drunk, and other questions like that, somehow suggesting that you must have done something wrong to deserve it. Even if the victim was 12 years old, s/he must have done something to provoke the attacker. It is absolutely ridiculous that we live in a society that still does this. And it is also extremely sad that in other parts of the world it is much worse than it is in America.

  87. Yesenia Herrera

    This summer I traveled to the Dominican Republic through the Amigos Program. During my two month stay, I was placed in a home consisting of a couple and their four children in order to maximize its potential for cultural exchange.
    I recall this one instance when my sisters and I had just bathed. Shortly after showering, we made the trip from the shower to the bedroom with ease. However, upon entering the sanctity of our deemed changing station, we found a pack of children (ranging from 6-10 years old) jumping and howling on our bed. My mom quickly dove into the situation and ushered the little guys outside – except for my nine year old brother who decided to stay behind to use my notebook and pens. The eldest of my two sisters immediately released the towel concealing her body and proceeded to start changing. I took this as a cue to follow suit and proceeded accordingly.
    Olgalys, my youngest sister, refused to change with him inside the room. When he wouldn’t leave she began to storm out of the room, only to be stopped by my fuming mother. She began scolding her for never changing in front of Alessander and even went as far as to say she was going to corrupt -make him a misogynistic pig who rapes (she was more creative and info latte more explicit with her language but this works for our purposes) – him because of her behavior; in her mind, one “perverses” the body by concealing it and she believes this is especially true between men and women.
    This idea has been something with which I’ve toyed since I was little and it was wonderful to see it manifest beyond nudist philosophy and my beloved figure drawing classrooms. More specifically in a rural Dominican town consisting of no more than 400 people.
    Now, I’m not saying women should necessarily force themselves to wear less clothing than they’re comfortable wearing, but I think that it’s important to remind ourselves that feminists aren’t just defending women rape victims. Feminism seems to be addressing a culture of body shaming that seems to take root in Western thought and its respective civilization.

  88. I adore this article! I had never thought about the strip clubs in that matter, it’s not like the bouncers are mechanical and the men are strapped to their seats. Girls growing up are always taught to police themselves. We always have to be aware of what is going on around us, and be conscious of our bodies. We are taught to travel in packs, hold our drinks, and to be modest. You are right that most men don’t care for the cues, but unfortunately I feel we all must still continue to police ourselves to the best of our ability. My sociology of gender teacher had told us “Women police themselves to help prevent sexual assault, but it doesn’t really matter. It all falls back on the choices men make with their bodies.” I love dresses and it just seems outrageous to stop wearing something that makes me feel good because too much of my knee is showing. Our bodies, Ourselves.

  89. Dressing provocative has always been an issue for the female gender. Over the recent years I’ve heard about all of these protests as well, and you know what they have a point! I know for a fact that there is some people out there that do think the way you dress provokes people into acting a certain way. Back in high school there’s always that rule that you can’t wear skirts or shorts, shorter than your fingertips. To this day I still think that it is the most ridiculous rule that the education system has made. Why does it matter so much to them about how you dress? Is it because they think that, that might provoke a teacher into “raping” or “molesting” their students? Haha! What a joke. That should have nothing to do with the actions others take. I, as a woman, should be able to feel safe with a short dress, shorts, or skirt on. I should be able to wear what I want without fearing that what I wear when I step out of my door, might have to do with me getting raped. Everybody should feel safe no matter what they’re wearing, man or woman. Just because you might wear less clothes when you go out does not mean that you’re “asking for it” and the fact that some rapists see it that way sickens me. The victim does not ask to be raped and violated by their clothes, or anything for that matter. No is no, even in a short skirt.

  90. In high school I was told on many occasions that the clothes I wore were too provocative and that I would distract the male students from their work, from the supervisors at school. I was not a very confident high school girl who felt comfortable wearing clothes that showed my “assets”, but on days that it was a 100 degrees, I did wear shorts or a tank top, but of course always made sure they followed the dress code knowing how the staff was. No matter I was always ridiculed for my clothes, on one occasion a teacher asked me in front of a room full of people if I “wanted to look like a whore?”. After that I never wore shorts to school and felt to uncomfortable to wear anything that would show my legs and even began wearing higher necklines. I feel that this is a perfect example of how rape culture is appropriated, teaching girls that it is our fault that men look, that we should dress modestly so that they are not distracted and so it is not our fault if something happens. It’s very cruel that as young woman we are taught that we are the blame, but in all actuality it is not our fault for a man’s desire, they will look no matter what you are wearing, it is society’s fault for believing that we are at fault for another’s decision.

  91. As a society we like to blame the issue on the victims for the problem and the unacceptable situation. It tends to make things more safe and more okay. In this example of rape instances, I believe that it has to do with more than just the way the victim is dressed. In some situations, yes the way he or she is dressed will initiate or ignite the inner rape desire the offender wants to act upon. However that does not justify or allow for the rape to happen. A shirtless man or a woman in a short skirt does no say, “Hi, I am asking for it by wearing this provocative and sexual clothing. Don’t bother to ask me for sex, just attack me.” No clothing attire asks for such a predatory behavior like rape. There are sometimes criminal, mental, and violent tendencies in a rapist’s twisted mind. The woman is usually brutalized is always to blame. A lot of rape situations happen due to two things other than an intentional provocative dress or look… opportunity and vulnerability. Sometimes that is provocative dressings, sometimes that’s the determination of the offender. I do not think that simply and solely dressing makes someone do something. Maybe for a young preteen but even then it has more to do than just the other person’s clothing.

    • Truly, simply and solely dressing cannot make someone do something. No one is that weak. And in some cultures people can’t even understand why anyone would want to force someone to have sex with them if they didn’t want to. I can’t imagine having any desire to for someone to have sex with me if they didn’t want to.

  92. I think it’s completely idiotic that one would blame a victim of rape for the crime that was committed to them. Not only is it victimizing the rapist themself, but it is insinuating that women cannot dress or appear a certain way unless they want to be raped. First, women have the right to wear and appear the way they wish to. If a woman is going out for the night with her girlfriends, she should be able to wear what she wishes without being judged as someone who is “waiting to get raped”. Why would any woman want that? Second, a majority of rapes don’t even happen to women who are dressed “provocatively”; it can happen to anyone! As the article stated, it happens to women who are fully clothed in burqas. A rapist has motives for their crimes that goes much further than what the victim is wearing. Therefore, blaming a victim of rape is like making a rapist the victim themself.

  93. Standish Student

    The answer is NO. Provocative dress never causes rape. Rapists cause rape. This article was very informative and laid down basic answers to society’s questions. For one, rape is never caused by the clothing a female wears and it is never her fault. Regardless of whether or not a female is wearing clothing that shows more skin or is very conservative, her clothes do not provoke an attack on her body. Psychologically, as the article explains, rapists have justified their attack by pitting the blame against the women and her actions, obviously. Furthermore, many rapists have justified their attack by explaining how they were taking back their manhood and wanted to feel dominant in an environment. Unfortunately for these men, raping a woman does not make you look like a man, instead it makes you look like a sick coward. Society has usually blamed women for rape because of the clothing they have worn, however exposure on this issue has explained that women’s clothing do not provoke any attack whatsoever.

  94. Jansi Christhuraj

    The rape does not happen simply because how women dress. It is totally true that most covered women in different countries have higher rate of rape cases than most exposed skin countries. From my point of view the dress in not a major reason for rape, but it is still plays considerable effect to disturb the men. If the dress does not play a role in rape, why schools need to put stricter rules for how to dress?, and even most of the work places also have stricter dress codes. Moderate level of dressing might avoid some unnecessary threats to women.

    • Clothing has symbolic meaning that schools and businesses often like to observe. And understandably, sense dress does affect the way we see and are seen. So it makes sense to have codes of dress for business or school, whether that be no tattered clothing, ties and jackets, or uniforms to encourage taking school, business, or yourself, more seriously…

  95. Rape is never the fault of the victim, everyone is responsible for their own actions. The rapist is responsible for their own actions, and even if someone was not wearing something provocative the rapists that see cues in dress would find a different cue and justification for their actions. You would never hear of a homeowner being at fault for their burglary because their curtains were a bit short. But somehow someone forcing their way into your body is viewed as the fault of the victim.

    This article reports that very few men are rapists, but one in six women in America will be victims of a rape or an attempted rape (1). That either means more than a few men are rapists, or we have a few incredibly busy rapists. Why are we putting so much effort in teaching women how to avoid rape? Why are we not teaching men how to be rapists?


    • It turns out that few men rape, but the ones who do are serial rapists. Which goes on to demonstrate that it’s not the clothes a woman wears but the problems the rapists have. In gender-equal societies (the few we know about) women aren’t raped. (Like the American Indians of the American East Coast before European contact.)

  96. When it comes to rape against women, there’s almost always a notion of violence or desire to harm. Contrary to what many media outlets tell you, the action of rape has very little to do with sexual desire (sexual desire without need for violence, at least). It doesn’t matter if a woman is dressed with short shorts and a crop top or a turtleneck, if a man feels the desire to commit a rape, they’ll find a way to commit it. Like the blog said, not all men rape but constantly, men are surrounded by different women. It’s only certain men who decide to commit the crime, whether or not they’re “provoked” by a woman’s choice in clothing.
    I believe that the increase in rape in certain areas of the world is due to the depressing lack of making rapists responsible for their actions. The fact that we still live in a masculine-dominated world is very real. If a rape occurs and is taken to court, usually everything is done to dehumanize the victim and engage in “victim-blaming”, where “provocative” clothing and simply having breasts comes into fault. This takes everything off of the rapist’s shoulders, which works well for the masculine culture.
    To help end this issue, more serious actions need to be taken. It’s time to hold rapists accountable for their actions. And end the policing against women.

  97. Each person owns his/her body. No other being can tell you what to do or make you do stuff that you don’t want. Rapists don’t see that because they feel the need to have control of something in their life. Some do it because they are feeling depressed while at the same time they feel dominant/superior. We see that countries where there is higher patriarchy have higher rates of rape, while those in egalitarian have lower rates. Cues are dangerous at times because people will take those messages as something else. Just like token resistance, where someone think a person wants something but in reality they didn’t and that can create a problem.

  98. There’s no inviting rape. That’s a stupid notion that only a man could come up with.

  99. Not for all time,but dressing can add fuel to spark & it may become fire which can burn you.!

    • Not really.

      Rape and sexual harassment are on the increase in Egypt, even though women are covering themselves more than they did in the 1950s. Of course, the women are blamed for letting a little bit of hair fall from their veil. “Adding flame to the fire.” But really not.

      Or, rapists say it’s a woman’s fault cause she look at him or smiled at him. Fanning those flames. But really not.

      The blame is meant to take blame away from the rapist and put it on the victim.

      And try to control women: what they can wear, where they can go, who they can look at or smile at…

  100. It can cause rape but it is not an excuse to do it so. Girls dress this way because they like it, because they want to show their femininity but if they get raped,the problem doesn’t come from the way they dressed but from the way the person see them as an easy target or as an object. I am sorry but if a girl wants to wear a short or something, she is free to wear them which doesn’t give the rights to men to rape them.

    • And it doesn’t even cause it. It’s an excuse. Without this excuse the excuse becomes, “she looked at me,” or “she smiled at me.” So men are free but women are supposed to watch themselves? I think the excuses are just meant to control women.

  101. Kaitlin Cabral

    I don’t think that the way a woman dresses has anything to do with being sexually assaulted. This is something that we hear way too often, “her outfit caused her to be raped”, or “she was asking for it with that outfit”, and I could not agree more with this post that defends women and their right to wear what they please without the fear of being raped. Comments such as those that suggest it was the victim’s fault because of what their wearing is just an excuse, and a horrible one at that. Why would anyone want to make excuses for rapists? Women should be free to wear what they desire, because no matter how “provocative” their outfit may seem, it does not give anyone the right to sexually assault them, and as a society, we should definitely avoid making a victim feel as if it was their fault in any way.

  102. Julieta Torres

    In my opinion I believe that the way a women dresses is not the reason that a man decides to rape her. I believe that its all on the individual who decides to pursue the victim. One day I went to the club with my friend and we were just having a girls night out. I was wearing tight jeans and a shirt with a bit of cleavage, nothing more provocative than the other girls in the club. I was dancing with a guy who keep on insisting in touching my private area, why is it that because I am in the club I have to be seen a sexual object? just because I am a women, in the club? It makes me think about how men who go to stripers shows, are able to contain themselves and this women are wearing verily enough to cover themselves if that. When me on the other hand I wasn’t wearing clothing that can provoke a men to want to rape. My point is that is all on the individual, a men who has issues won’t contain himself. When I decided to tell this men to stop, me and my friend decide to leave and we notice that this men and his friend left to and they were following us. Thank God nothing happen, they stop following us after we went to a public place, but what would of happen if he would of caught up? what were his intensions? He was mad because I had the right to say no, and stop him from wanting to take advantage of me. So in all my point is that, a women cant be blame for the way she dresses, I believe and stand in my thought that is the men who has his issues.

    • Yeah, the vast majority of men are perfectly able to control themselves, and do.

      In societies where women are covered from head to toe rape is sometimes at epidemic proportions.

      It’s not the clothes.

  103. If a male is a real man , he. Will. Show. Mercy and not rape S woman or a man. Raping is sign of ungodliness. It is not our right in. Our modern world to do

  104. i do think dressing provocatively causes rape. I also think a girl who is wearing sweatpants with a jacket, could be subject to rape too, but to a lower extent . What i do know for sure is that dressing provocatively increases the chance of rape. Men get more aroused when they see a woman with a miniskirt, rather than a girl who is wearing sweatpants. I mean men could walk outside with a speedo on and not be worried about being raped. i believe it is because women are seen as property/inferior than men in our society. It is just how society works.Woman want to look attractive just as men do (by wearing minimal clothing ) but they can attract the the wrong type of men( rapists) who are much stronger than these women, and could end up getting raped. i believe if woman were stronger than men, there would be a lot of cases in which men would be raped if they were to wear dress provocatively

    • I suppose that’s why rape is at epidemic proportions in Egypt. Even though women are completely covered up there. Even though there is more rape now in Egypt than several years ago when Egyptian women didn’t cover up so much.

  105. Zoe Von Dollen

    I completely agree with the fact that a way women dresses has no impact on a man that’s intent on misreading signals. It is so much easier to place the blame on a woman wearing a low-cut shirt or a short dress, because we don’t have to delve into the psychological aspect of why the man felt the need to rape. We simply choose to believe that the women was asking for it because it’s easier and less disturbing for us. Women should not have to go throughout their lives scared about their fashion choices or misread signals, the same way that men do not dread walking through parking garages at night. There is no reason why women must live in fear of being sexually assaulted.

  106. Mankind didn’t came with clothes from factory, right? And even with burqas, we still have rapes. What should we dress? Armors? Chastity belts?

    Now, to be serious, I think we don’t live in an utopia, so in the same way as I don’t leave my car unlocked or with some valuable exposed because something probably will happen, I know I have to take precautions like not parking near to vans, look inside the car before getting in, returning from hikes before sunset and preferably not alone, etc. These are the ways I believe I could avoid potential rape situations. But when it comes to what I should or should not dress, I totally agree it wouldn’t make much difference for someone with a raper mindset waiting only for a “sign” from me – which could be a smile or a look, even if just imaginary. Sad, indeed, but I think we’re still far away as society, and maybe even as species, from getting rid of this plague.

  107. There are indeed some people who are sick enough to rape other people, however these rapists will commit a malicious act of violence regardless of what a person may or may not be wearing. I don’t believe that dressing provocatively can necessarily cause rape, however I don’t think it helps a potential “rape” situation either. When a person scantily clad it is likely they are seeking attention and want others to look at their bodies. A rapist may see this type of dress, and either think the person wearing this attire is wanting sexual attention, or it may just trigger the rapist think about/want to have sex. If they were not thinking sexual thoughts prior, the bare skin may trigger sexual thoughts which could led=ad them to act out in violence. Now I’m not saying that this type of dress is what causes people to act on their violent thoughts, I’m simply saying it may be one of the possibly many triggers that causes someone to act out this way.

  108. I definitely feel as though provocative dress has a lot of negative effects, but of course do not believe that is any excuse for a man to assault a women, or for people to wrongly blame the victim. However, wearing provocative clothing can make people view you differently, or see you as more lose or “easy”. This may lead to misunderstandings or the misinterpreted “cues” that were discussed. In college, I feel as though a lot of people are concerned with sexual satisfaction, partying, and making the most of their youth before they have to commit to a job, settle down and maybe start a family, etc. If the rumor is that someone is slutty or sleeps around, even if that rumor is simply derived by the fact that the person wears provocative clothing, I believe this could already plant the seed in someone’s mind that, if they make a move and are rejected, that the girl is simply playing hard-to-get. I could also see how this kind of misguided information could bring men to have sex with women under the influence of alcohol without necessarily realizing that they are indeed engaging in an act of rape. I can somewhat see from the perspective of an individual who was guilty of rape though they did not intend to commit that crime, however, that is still not the victim’s fault- at all.

  109. Nobody should ever be blamed for being harassed, violated, or raped. It is never the victim’s fault. It is actually pretty pathetic for some people to say “she was asking for it because she was dressed too sexy”. Sadly our society/ media has a way of planting this idea in our minds that sometimes it is the victim’s fault for getting raped. Nobody should ever fear getting raped because of how they are dressed. When I was a young girl I never thought twice about what kind of attention I would get for the clothing I wore. Now as a young woman I think twice about going out in a short dress or showing cleavage because I fear I might be getting the wrong attention. It is very scary to even have to worry about these things.

  110. Lindsey DiSilvetsre

    I strongly agree that they way you dress has little to do with if you will be raped or not. I think a women or man should dress how they would like, and not feel like they should be ashamed or worried about how other people see them. Even in high school girls are told to not wear certain things. I once got in trouble for wearing a tank top to school with my bra straps showing. It was over 100 degrees that day, and the vice principal was telling me to put on my jacket. When I asked her why I had to, she said that my shirt and bra straps were too provocative and could cause problems with the boys at the school, my shirt was too distracting. I understand we were minors and I am all for reasonable dress codes, but why should I be responsible or the boys hormones. In a way this is similar to telling women who were raped that their clothes provoked their rapist. It is never the victims fault and whether we are running around naked or covered from head to toes, there will still be rapists and people who can be respectful and not give in to such sexual urges.

  111. First off, I have to say rapists and anybody that harms a child in any way are completely disgusting. I could not agree with you more on how dressing slutty provokes someone to commit rape. That’s complete nonsense. These men that choose to rape have serious psychological issues. For whatever reason they think they have, they cannot control it. And no circumstance will change that. I love the stripper point you made. Dudes go to strip clubs all the time and don’t get all “rapey”. Just seeing someone in a provocative or sexual way does not constitute the thought or need to rape. My mother was actually raped in the 70’s and the court asked her to furnish the clothing she was wearing, due to the guy saying she provoked it. I have no clue why that would even be asked for or admissible in any sense. But it was. No idea why.

    • I am so sorry about what happened to your mom. And I’m so sorry that in the past, and still today, people blame the woman and what she wore for an act of violence — an act that no man needs to commit.

  112. I remember discussing this with my mom earlier. We were discussing a different, but related article about a survey conducted in Brazil. A majority of Brazilian people said that women who dressed provocatively deserve to be raped (article can be found here: This answer, among others out lined in the article angered me to my core. I showed this article to my mom, and she (disgustingly) agree with the majority of the survey takers, saying that provocative dress was reason enough to rape someone. I don’t think that I’ve ever been so angry at someone in my whole life. Victim blaming is far too common and is very harmful to society. If we begin education to combat victim blaming, perhaps it will stop.

    • Wow! So sorry to hear that — both the survey and your mom’s perspective. It shows how so many people internalize a perspective, which comes out of patriarchy, that blames women when men harm them. “Patriarchy” being different from “men.” A lot of men don’t like this way of seeing because when men aren’t punished more women are raped, and that leads women to dislike sex and fear men. Plus there are all of those men who have enough empathy to feel horrible about it all, whether or not they, themselves, are harmed.

  113. As discussed in this post, although women’s clothing choices are blamed for them being raped, this is inaccurate. There’s never a valid reason or excuse for rape. Blaming a woman and her clothing choices is ridiculous. Showing skin can be distracting and can attract attention (this is why public schools have dress codes in place). However, a person’s clothing cannot force another to engage in rape.

    It is a woman’s business and hers alone as to how she dresses. In the 1980s, many men wore very short shorts – it was the style. I also remember men wearing mesh (see through) shirts. However, no one accused these men of trying to seduce women with their mostly bare legs or chests. No one accused these men of “asking” to be raped. So why are women automatically accused of trying to attract and seduce men if they show a little leg, arm, or chest? Look at other countries like Spain or France. Topless or nude beaches are common. These places don’t have a higher rate of rape than places where women are completely covered up from head to toe all the time. Ultimately, the argument that showing skin causes rape doesn’t hold up.

  114. masscommblogproject

    I totally agree that women dressing a certain way does NOT cause rape. In my opinion, the rapist has something seriously wrong with him to where he cannot control his emotions, and this is the reason for rapes happening. I have known women who have been sexually assaulted, and never, ever did I question what they were wearing, or if they were dressing too “sexily”, because they weren’t. And yes, MOST men can contain themselves, which is why I think when rape does happen, I there is something seriously wrong in the person’s brain that committed it. As a woman myself, I have always dressed pretty modestly. But if I feel like dressing up, I am going to do so without feeling like I need to worry about my clothing causing something bad to happen to me. And I am going to continue smiling at men, because I can’t help it, I’m nice. But I am also cautious in general, because something like this happening to me is terrifying. It’s just unfair, that women’s clothing, or the way they were acting could be blamed for something as horrible and despicable as rape occurring. Blows my mind.

    • Yes, it’s never her fault. But the guys who rape are not unable to control their emotions. There are different motivations, but most of them are trying to make some sort of the statement about their superiority to their victim (Male superiority to women) so that they can feel their power. So a lot of these guys don’t feel very powerful and their lives. Some are trying to prove their manhood to other guys — usually in gangs or fraternities. Some are using rape as a weapon of war to intimidate the enemy. So we can be very deliberate.

      But thanks for your thoughts, you make a lot of interesting points.

  115. This topic is a great one because as a young adult, I am still in the club-bar scene and I see how some women dress “ more provocative” versus how other women dress “non-provocative” when going out. The topic of who looks like a “slut” and who doesn’t is always present in my group of friends or acquaintances. I never engage in these talks because when one labeled a women who’s showing a little more skin as a “slut” is really ridiculous and in a sense who ever saying or thinking that is over generalizing women who decided to show a little skin as all sluts. Now one thing I hate the most and makes no sense is when people make comments such as “she was looking for it” when sexually assaulted or raped. Like the post states there is no correlation between how women dress to them getting raped. I also agree that rapist do not look for “cues” they are going to rape because they want to and as a insane people cannot control themselves. I sometimes feel as if these thoughts on how women should dress are all part of our society oppressing women even more. It is as our society does not want women to have the right to feel sexy and empowered because we might be “looking for it” or putting ourselves in risk of getting raped. Contributors to this are both men and women who talk down on women who dress indecently. Also to comment I feel that if women decided to dress a certain way whether it be to show more skin or have a lower cut blouse it does not mean she does not respect her self, it means she is confident in her skins or doesn’t care about what society thinks and its up to everyone else in society to respect that.

  116. ninoshka mirkooshesh

    I completely agree with this article. The way a woman dresses does not mean she is asking to be raped. Yes, some women do show a little bit more skin maybe to draw the attention of a man, but that does not mean she is asking to be raped. She is simply comfortable with her skin, and she should be the one in control of who she wants to have relations with. Very few men will find any excuse to get what they want even without the consent of the woman they are doing it to. Like you said in some countries men will even use the excuse of how a woman ankle, wrist, or even hair was showing. It is not fair that woman feel as though they cannot dress freely because they fear attracting the attention of a wrong man, and him taking advantage of what he feels is her fault.

  117. Provocative dress is never an excuse for rape. There is no excuse for rape. Men who see a woman in a short skirt or a revealing dress and use it as a reason to force a woman to have sex with them is completely wrong. Women have every right to dress as they please, just as men do. The power struggle between men and women is never ending. Women fight for their right to be treated as equals to their male counterparts and men fight to stay above the women. It is a battle that has been going on since the beginning of time. It seems that most rapists get off on that exact power struggle. It makes me wonder that if women were treated as equals to men would rapes occur as frequently as they do now. Until women and men are seen as equal we will never know.

  118. Provocative dressing shouldn’t cause rape.. it actually wont make sense if it does like the article says even the ones that don’t dress provocatively still get raped so no matter how a woman dresses she might still get raped. But saying that it is a woman fault for dressing that way then you are probably ignorant is like saying Your stupidity provoked me to hit you.. there is the problem why would you do such thing.. Its disgusting how men rape innocent woman and even children this is becoming out of control. Sometimes I think why do they have to force a woman when they can ask for consent and if she says no well you can find another woman who would. About Children those who hurt the innocence of a child should face prosecution probably even eye for an eye. It gets me really mad whenever I hear that someone raped a child or a woman. And not only are woman being raped but also boys. this world is coming to a disaster some people don’t know to keep their boundaries why hurt someone when they haven’t done anything you. The excuse men use to hurt child or a woman to do rape is the most absurd and nonsense.

  119. @Shanon Muse

    You make a very good point about how girls are being taught from a very young age. They are being told to change their actions and the way they express themselves so this and that doesn’t happen to them because, clearly, it is their fault. That’s what they learn anyways.

    There was also a rule at my high school that girls couldn’t wear shorts that were “too short”, sleeveless/strapless, and see-through because it would distract from the education of the boys. Girls had to change so that the boys could get a better education. Something doesn’t sound right here. A situation I had encountered recently when I was with my girlfriend demonstrates views of women by society. We were on our way to a concert when we pass a group of construction workers who made remarks as we walk by. My girlfriend is wearing her usual concert outfit, shorts and crop top. One of the remarks that was made to me was as follows: “Keep her close, it’s not our fault she’s dressed like that.” This showed that 1) If she dresses in a certain way, bad things will happen to her and 2) It was my job, as a man, to keep her safe, as if she couldn’t do that on her own. This infuriated me and relates back to this article to how people in our society can blame a man’s cruel actions on the garment a woman decides to wear that day. It’s absurd, really.

  120. Carol Lynn Langdon

    This is a topic that specifically angers me to my CORE. I don’t talk about it in public because, as a female, I risk hateful remarks and comments because I don’t side with my fellow women on this one. I think a lot of the issue comes from women placing all of the blame ON men, when in reality, women are to blame too. Not for the rape, I am in no way excusing rape as no one person has the right to touch or encounter another human being without their consent.

    The reason we wear clothes is to protect ourselves. Also, to cover parts of the body that are considered sexual. I use this analogy a LOT with my friends. I have a lot of friends who are very skinny and in shape and are very beautiful women. And they like to wear short shorts and tank tops and things that I consider to be revealing and a little inappropriate. And EVERY single one of my friends complains when a man looks at her and stares. And my issue is, we wear clothes to cover up ourselves, so why would you complain if a man stares at you when you have barely any clothes on? And the same goes for men, you can’t complain if you get stared at if you are walking around in barely any clothing.

    So my response to “does provocative clothing cause rape” would be yes, in a way. There is a reason we wear clothing, and that is to cover ourselves and to cove up sexual body parts. If you put those things on display for the world to see, you can’t exactly expect to not be judged or to not be stared at, regardless of gender.

    And I do want to make it clear, I am in no way excusing rape.

    • I’m glad you’re not excusing rape. But the clothes tend to be more of an excuse than a cause. The men are trying to justify themselves. If they didn’t have the clothes they would find something else, And they do. If a sexy woman isn’t around, they will used the excuse — in their own minds — that she looked at me, Or she smiled at me. I agree that you shouldn’t be surprised if guys look at you if you show some skin. But rape isn’t provoked by showing skin. In Middle Eastern countries Women are blamed because A little bit of hair may have fallen from a veil — and who could resist? It’s really easy to see that that’s pretty resistible.

  121. When it comes to the topic of clothing causing rape it’s a very tricky subject. Does dressing in revealing clothing invite sexual attacks? Absolutely not. However I do believe something is to be said from the male perspective. I do believe that a man would definitely pay more attention to a woman dressed scantily clad than one mostly covered. So with that being said, I would say that women dressed in more revealing material are looked at more often and targeted more than others. These men see women dressed as such and think much differently of a woman say in sweatpants and a hoodie. The clothing, nor the woman is to blame here though. The way I see it, men are often more prone to pay attention to women dressed in less which makes them at a higher risk with these predators around. Too often a man will use the woman’s attire against her when he is trying to defend himself. The fact of the matter is that clothing is not to blame when it comes to assaults. Men simply use the clothing as an excuse to get away with these heinous acts.
    One point I’d like to bring up as well is male victim’s of rape. I guarantee that 99% of the time, these men were not wearing revealing clothing that was sexually provocative, so what’s the excuse? There is none. That right there can be said for women as well, THERE IS NO EXCUSE.

  122. I agree with the statement “Women don’t cause rape by what they wear”. I attended a private religious elementary school where everyone was required to wear uniforms. From elementary school I went to a public middle school where I was not required to wear a uniform but there was a dress code. The rule that frustrated me the most was the “finger tip length” shorts. Some of my friends were able to wear shorter shorts because they have shorter arms or smaller hands so this we not a fair rule.This rule was enforced to prevent the boys from being distracted and to maintain a positive academic environment. Now that time has past I believe that we should not be telling young girls to cover up because we will distract the young boys but instead we need to teach younger boys how to respect women and their bodies. Same thing goes with rape, we are constantly teaching girls how to prevent being raped by wearing more clothing, less makeup, not to walk alone at night. Why are we not educating men at a younger age about rape and the other side of it?

  123. And if a woman is running around naked nobody has any right to rape her.

  124. I have seen enough groping/skirt lifting on crowded buses/trains,out side night clubs ect on scantly clad women to say that yes when there is no security around and an aroused guy feels he can get away with it he will act.We see what happens in countries with very little rule of law and it’s only this that keeps us from reverting back to barbarians.If suddenly there were a disaster that became anarchy we would go back to killing one another-It’s just human nature.

    • But men don’t really behave that way because they are aroused. It’s a power play.

      Although, some guys get aroused by experiencing their power.

      The sexual-harassment rate is much higher in Egypt — where women completely cover up — than here. This sort of thing is done by men who want to feel a sense of superiority (I can do what I want with your body), and are trying to create a sense that women don’t have control of their bodies and shouldn’t feel safe. It’s about power, and not what women are wearing.

      Telling women they need to wear a particular type of clothing is just more of a power-play: you wear what I tell you to!

  125. Veronica Perez

    It makes me very angry to see that many still blame women for being raped. And the saddest part of this, is that some of us women do that too. The way a women dresses is no reason to force her into sex. Men dress provocative too especially when performing exercise and they do not get sexually harassed the way women do. It is a choice to rape a women. Men who rape want to feel power and in control. It is the fault of the patriarchy we are raised in because it creates the sense that women are objects. Women need more respect from our society in order to change the way some men view women. And as a woman I feel that us women have a responsibility to make this change happen. First of all we must stop making differences between our kids. Stop telling your daughters, be careful how you act with men. Stop being so strict with your daughters, and lenient with your sons, because it gives them the impression that they can do what they please. It shows that women have to behave and control themselves, but men don’t. This is why we blame women instead of men. So lets speak up and demand respect, because staying quiet does more harm than speaking up.

  126. Rape is about power and control not sex, so i think the way women dress has nothing to do with what rapists look for in a victim. if someone looks particularly vulnerable, that is a different story, however, if a women is wearing revealing clothes i don’t believe that will cause someone to rape. Rape is about asserting one’s power and control over someone else.

  127. This article is on point. I couldn’t agree more with the statement regarding blame. Victims should never feel at fault or feel blamed for anything. It was an act of insanity by a rabid male. Rationalization by the mind is a powerful thing. You can make yourself believe anything. So much so that you interpret things incorrectly and see things that are not even present. It is a double-edged sword in many instances. In health care, we see this as a benefit due to the mind’s ability to block out certain things (i.e. pain up to a certain level). However, the mind can play tricks on a person.
    What kills me is the lack of action that people are taking in response to the massive rise of rapes and sexual assaults in the United States. I know that many universities are being investigated for their lack of a response to the plethora of cases. And some women have taken it into their own hands by placing names of the males in bathroom stalls and other public areas so that other women will know to stay away from them. This obviously brings into question the “innocent before proven guilty” ideology that we have in America. But due to a lack of action, when do we say when?

  128. Rape is an ongoing problem that happens every day in this world. Men who rape often use the excuse of, “She wasn’t covered up, she was asking for it” simply because she was dressed a certain way. If I woman is wearing a mini skirt and a tank top, that does not mean she is asking for it. If a woman is wearing a tight dress that shows a lot cleavage, that does not mean she is asking for it. A woman is never asking to be raped. Women these days are taught to cover up, and to do anything they can to not provoke a man and give them the wrong idea. They are taught to look away, to wear clothing that isn’t so revealing, and to understand that “boys will be boys.” Anyone who agrees that women are the ones who need to stop themselves from getting raped are completely out of line and are just defending men in the world. For the topic of rape, the audience should not be women, it should be men. We teach women to not get raped instead of teaching men to just not rape at all. Men are able to control themselves, they are able to resist urges. A man should never touch a woman unless she gives them the okay, no matter what the woman is wearing.

  129. Vanessa Medel

    In my opinion, a woman who chooses to dress provocative is comfortable in her skin and is seeking attention. But the type of attention they desire depends on the type of woman and does not have to be in a negative way. It does not necessarily have to come from a “cute” stranger; it can also be attention from a loved one. Or even for an occasion. Whatever the reason may be: rape is never the reason for how women decide to dress. A woman should always feel free to dress in any way, shape, or form without being accused of rape. This is simply a psychological way for men to avoid being blamed for something that is clearly their choice of action.

  130. I definitely agree that just because a girl dresses “provocatively” and gets raped or sexually assaulted, doesn’t mean that the rape or assault is somehow justified. The guy who did it is still to blame and the millions of girls and women being assaulted are being harmed physically and mentally traumatized by the attack.

    As the post said, a girl can have her whole body covered in clothing and still be raped or assaulted.

    Rapists rape for power, like getting off on the so fact that he has more control over the girls body than the girl herself.

    A woman dressed provocatively is just as blameless as a woman dressed in a long skirt or pants and a sweatshirt or covered head to toe. They’re all completely blameless because they did not do the assaulting, they did not ask for it and they did not give consent.

    Clothing does not equal consent, nor it ever will.

  131. gift sumasumo

    A lot of stuff can be said in all directions, but my theory is what we consider to be the attracting force between men and women. Is greater in others while some don’t possess it at all. So there are people who get aroused by the very word “sex”, so one shouldn’t be surprised if looking at the prospect of bonding with another person…..

    • Okay. I’m not quite sure what you’re saying, But given my interpretation here is my response:

      If you look at the motives of rapists it’s not sex so much they want as A feeling of power over someone, with sexual assault, usually women.

      In many cultures the excuse used to rape women is that she didn’t have her hair covered, or an arm covered, And what man could resist?

      It’s easier to see how ludicrous the idea is when it comes from another culture.

  132. It’s fair to say whoever thought it was the way a woman dresses is a cue to a rapist to do harm on her, is a bit ignorant. Although some forms of clothing are more than just revealing, it’s also considered a fad or trendy, yet not everyone is going to be alarmed because of wearing a bathing suit. It’s not necessarily their clothing, it’s the rapist motivation, to rape the person they’re targeting. In the article, the author states that, “The cue-reading rapist has decided to attack someone, and is seeking justification. He will rape and he will find something to blame other than himself”. Meaning he could use just about anything you wear, maybe even the color of your shirt as an excuse to commit his crime. The thing with this is you cannot reason with an individual who’s mind isn’t right, especially when it some to sexual predators.

  133. From a man’s point of view, I totally agree with you saying that the rapist would not give a damn about how the girl is dressed. I do not think one can protect herself by covering up all her skin, not smiling, nor having eye-contacts because those rapist do rape when they do. But here is one thing I want to ask, if you are to take a statistic about which of the two girls; the one with all her skin covered or the one wearing a complete advocative clothes, do men feel sexy or have the desire to take advantage of ? I think the consequence is quite obvious. Considering and admitting the fact that women can wear whatever they want to wear or however they want to behave, I think it is necessary for girls to keep in mind, that some of the things they do actually stimulates guys sexual desire than others.

    Since I am from Japan, I will indicate a serious sexual problem that is happening there. In Japan, most of female students start wearing school uniforms (blouse and skirt) when they get to junior-high or high school. Once they do, what happens is that they start wearing their skirts so short. In Japan, students usually go to school using trains and subways (which are super crowded during commuting hours) and often, they get molested or taken peeping shots. It is slightly different from raping but at least seems like those men who do this think that they have more rights to the woman’s body than a woman does, herself.
    I happen to read lots of news about these men getting arrested and all they say is they DID IT because they saw cute little legs coming out of girls’s skirts and got the DESIRE.

    So, as I can say from this, it is true that the rapist is just giving him excuse for what he did and trying to justify himself.
    To conclude, it is always nice to behave and dress, considering the TPO to protect yourself!

    • But rapists don’t rape because they are sexually turned on. They rape because they want power. See this:

      Mind of a Rapist: Trying to Bridge a Gap between a Small Self and a Big Man

      The girl’s clothing is just an excuse.

      To say that girls should be careful about how they dress is the same as telling them to never look at a man or smile at a man. Because this type of rapist I’m talking about here is just looking for an excuse. (All the other rapists don’t care at all what she’s wearing.) Since this guy is looking for an excuse, would you also tell girls to never look at a man and never smile at a man?

      Don’t you think that we should put the responsibility on the rapist instead of telling women to limit themselves?

  134. In Islamic religion and some other religions and cultures, women are expected to dress conservatively and when doing so they are still being raped in the U.S as well as in third world countries. Regardless of how the woman is dressed, a rapist is a rapist, however I do feel that dressing provocatively at times stimulates lewd. Some men look at women as sexual objects but rapists look at women as individuals that they can strip of their dignity. In the end, everyone is entitled to dressing whichever way they want and rapists will always be sadistic animals that should burn in hell.

  135. The notion that we have to dress moderately in order to prevent rape is just ridiculous. Women if we want to protect ourselves from rapists we should look into self defense classes or maybe carry mace. If dressing provocatively directly caused rape, stores would stop selling those types of clothes because women wouldn’t wear them anymore. I’m so tired of rape being somehow blamed on the victim. She didn’t run around naked and scream “rape me rape me” she was taken advantage of by some sick pervert and for whatever reason we as a society put both people’s characters and personalities up for trial which is BS.

  136. I feel like a provocative dress can cause sexual harassment depending on the situation like where you are and how sexy the dress is. Wearing a provocative dress definitely catches other peoples attention. I was told to always wear something nice but not too revealing. Women should never be blamed for the cause of rape, we wear what we feel beautiful in. Rapists don’t really care if you’re wearing a nice dress or not, they are mentally unstable and when they want to attack, they will on any target. It’s sick.

    • I’m not sure how your first sentence goes with the rest of what you say. But the rest of what you say makes sense to me. Men always have control of themselves, after all — even if it may be convenient, sometimes, to insist they don’t.

  137. It really doesnt matter how you dress and i do not believe that men cant control their selves. That is just ridiculous! For example i had an appointment today to get some x rays done and i had a male perform the x rays and i had to put on a gown without a bra. If men couldnt control theirselves then shouldn’t he have tried to rape or provoke me? Ohh because its his job that makes him automatically controllable? No, its called respect. If a little girl gets raped is it because the way she was dressed? definately not! Men are pigs and if you cannot control you self or have respect for a little girl or a woman then theres something wrong. I completely agree with the stripper situation as well, if the bouncers wanted to rape the women they would. If they couldn’t help their selves they would be grabbing the women all the time.

  138. I am really greatful that someone is addressing this issue. I think that many people do think that it is not women’s fault for being the victim of rape, but they do not necessarily understand why men are picking the women that they do, if not for the way they dress. I could be wrong about this of course, but it did help me remember as well as clarify what I already knew about victim selection.

    Although I do wish that women did not think that the only way to feel good about themselves or become validated was through sexually objectifying themselves, I do think that women should be able to express themselves however they want without being judged by ANYONE. I think it is truly sad that people blame rape victims for the horrible crime that has been committed on them and your blog helps outline why people come to this conclusion and why it is unmerited. It is a psychological issue of the rapist, just like so many other crimes, that are also misunderstood in motive.

    Thank you for touching on these difficult issues, because they need to be addressed, and the more awareness there is, the better everyone can avoid these critical misunderstandings. Also then hopefully more people will be able to help and support those they love and even themselves.

  139. Louisa Engels

    “If seeing an enticing woman led men to conclude, “I’ve got to rape her,” all men would be rapists. Yet few are.” (BroadBlogs, September 26) Yes, few are, but those are the few we have to take into consideration when we’re out in the world.

    I know that what I’m about to say is not a popular idea, but, I disagree with the suggestion that that rapists don’t look for cues. I think rape occurs for different reasons. For example, as women, we’ve been told by law enforcement experts that if we walk with an air of strength and self-confidence, we will be less likely to be attacked. They say that predators look for women who appear timid and easy to assault. While I don’t believe for a moment that women are to be blamed for rape, I do think that it is important for women to be aware that rape is a reality. Attitude and dress can make a difference depending on the situation. Prostitutes get raped frequently. Someone with bad intentions can get the wrong impression from a woman who dresses and behaves in an overtly sexy manner. I’m not saying that women should dress like nuns, but I think it’s a good policy to take stock of the situation or event we are preparing for and dress accordingly.

  140. People saying that women get raped because of the way they dress has been the most popular excuse for eternity. It is just an excuse because wearing a short dress or showing skin is no way related to rape. Few weeks ago in India, a 5 year old minor was raped by two men. The cause this barbaric towards a child because of the way she was dressed is highly unlikely. I completely agree that “Some rape to feel powerful, others gang rape to demonstrate their manhood.” Almost all the cultures around the world till date, encourage the thought in men that women are supposed to be submissive and dominated by them. Raping women and children is a sickness. It is the result of failure of values and conscience in a person. The example of strippers is excellent because people who have the sense of what’s right and wrong, know that rape is a heinous crime that weak men commit to prove their manhood. Regardless of all the excuses for rape, the truth is that women have always been objectified. We are mostly seen as objects for sex whose primary purpose of existence is to satisfy the sexual needs of men. This sickness can be only prevented with parents teaching their sons and daughters to respect women as a human being.

  141. Sarah Lau Y. G

    I totally agree on your viewpoint on this. Blaming victims in raping is so common that girls are often responsible for being raped. Some countries even set laws to prevent people from wearing provocative clothes. I think this is absolutely nonsense to say provocative clothes makes people rape a girl. The fault should be on the one who act the crime but not the one who suffer it, no matter what they do. It might be true that some girls might intentionally attract men to their body by wearing sexy clothes. However, it can never link to the motive of raping.

  142. In my opinion women have the liberty to wear whatever they like. Just because women may wear provocative clothing it does not mean that anyone can rape or assault her. But still one needs to be careful – the word ‘provocative’ is relative – how provocative is provocative? A clothing style considered decent here in the States maybe considered provocative in some other parts of the world. My own personal experience – I was visiting my home country India last month; and I was in a small village – I was wearing casual full length jeans and a T-shirt covering half my arms – pretty much covered I would say….but people were still giving me looks suggesting I was dressed inappropriately and frankly I was a bit scared. Definitely things would have been different if I would have been in a bigger city in India or anywhere here in the US. So outlook of society in general also plays a vital role – would be better to use our common sense in deciding what to wear depending upon the place to the best of our knowledge.

  143. It is mind boggling to think that people believe that it is the way a female dresses that causes rape. I agree with what you are say 100%. I couldn’t believe how people even dare to blame the victim, instead of the attacker. I had recently heard on the news about how some schools don’t want girls to wear any tight jeans or leggings. Because it distracts the boys from school…. I know it is not the same from rape, but here they go blaming the females for the boys problems. I don’t think it is right for a female to go out of her way and change her style, just to benefit the boys. A female should be able to dress however she likes. Boys aren’t told not to wear certain things because it might distract females.

  144. I completely agree with this article and I think that it is ridiculous that people out there actually believe that some women “ask for it” (being raped) by the clothes they wear. As stated in the post, women from all different aspects of life are being raped on a daily basis and that includes women who are covered head to toe because that is what their culture tells them to do. Rapists will rape no matter what. Because women get blamed for being raped, this causes rapes to go unreported. If you really think about it, it’s the only crime that you really have to prove. If someone breaks into your house, you don’t have to prove that to the cops. But if a man rapes you, you have to go through every aspect of you day, week, or even months before the rape occurred to see maybe why this happened to you or even if it happened to you. How do people expect victims to come forward if they’re the ones that are going to be interrogated and humiliated even more for something that they had no control over. It’s disgusting that people think this way and I think in order for future generations to change the way they treat rape victims, kids need to become educated on who is really to blame in these situations.

  145. I personally feel that women have the right to wear any type of clothing they would like without being a target of rape. There is no excuse for anyone to rape someone. I feel that rapist who say they have raped someone because of their clothing are just plain ignorant. And are blaming the “provocative clothes” as an excuse for their actions, yet they should be blaming themselves for their actions. It’s not a women clothing or gestures that causes men to rape, is men who can’t control themselves. As a woman I feel like I should be able to wear what ever I want, yet I have to constantly be aware of the negative attention I might get. While men don’t really have to worry about getting rapist attention, or even worry about being called sluts or whore just by wearing flashy clothes.

  146. It’s almost “disgusting” how some can believe that the way a woman dresses can cause her to get raped. As mentioned in the post, the attacker will find any way to blame the victim. It’s ludicrous. Saying that if a woman is dressing provocatively she must be asking to get raped is the same as saying if a man dresses like an ***hole then he must want to get beat up. Rape is serious and it doesn’t come down to how a person dresses. A woman should be allowed to wear whatever she pleases and we have the right to do that. Putting blame and associating provocative dressing to rape is just a pathetic attempt to conceal wrongful doings.

    • Saying that if a woman is dressing provocatively she must be asking to get raped is the same as saying if a man dresses like an ***hole then he must want to get beat up.


  147. People must bear some responsibility for the outcomes of their actions. Some friends were discussing the “Slut Walks” that keep popping up,many women……… for details.

    • Yes. Potential rapists need to be responsible for their actions and choose not to rape.

      Clothing has nothing to do with it. High rates of sexual harassment and rape in places like Egypt. In fact, the biggest predictor of rape is male dominance/devaluing women.

  148. I don’t believe that provocative dress ever causes rape. A lot of people like to blame the victim and say they were raped because of what they were wearing. There have been women that have been raped who were fully clothed and weren’t dressed “provocative” at all. It doesn’t matter at all what the woman is wearing. In the article, “bad girls” can send certain signals to men by making eye contact, or showing some skin. It makes men get crazy thoughts about them. Rape occurs because of wanting to be dominant over another person or seem powerful. Men believe they have power over all women and can do whatever they want. I believe that if “provocative” clothing is the cause of rape that thousands of woman would be raped everyday. Whether a person is wearing clothes or not, it doesn’t protect them from getting raped. Rape is about having control and making the victims fearful. There are other men out there that aren’t like this at all and can resist temptation. Rape is never the victim’s fault no matter what.

  149. My partner and I absolutely love your blog and find a lot of your post’s to be just what I’m looking for. Would you offer guest writers to write content for you personally? I wouldn’t mind producing a post or elaborating on most of the subjects you write about here. Again, awesome blog!

    • I’m glad you like my blog. But since I don’t get paid for this I have no money to pay anyone to guest write. Any guest writer I have has volunteered to write something for free. If you would like to do that you can send something by me in the form of a comment (let me know you’d like it posted) and I’ll take a look at it.

  150. I don’t think a woman should be raped just because of what she wears but honestly if you’re naked and walking around or wearing skimpy clothes and walking in the dark, this may not attract rapists but it will attract unwanted attention. This unwanted attention cannot be blamed on the man at all but entirely on the woman and the way she dresses.

    Bottom line: Women need to not allow themselves to look like sex objects or that they’re about to step into a porno unless that is actually the image they are trying to get across. Even the nicest, most respectful man will probably become aroused if an already attractive woman is parading around in basically a thong and skimpy top.

    And let’s not overlook the fact that guys can be raped too. If a group of guys shows up intending to violate, no man or woman is safe.


    • Women tend to get their self-esteem from feeling attractive (problematic because it’s one-dimensional and short-lived). So they wear clothes that get men’s attention and make them feel attractive, and hence, good about themselves (I’m beautiful, valued, high-status…)

  152. i dont know Provocative Dress. will you please tell me.any diffrences between normal dress and Provocative Dress.

    • “Provocative” dress would be something that many will say provokes a reaction of lust. In the U.S. that would mean short skirts, low-cut blouses, tight clothes. In Saudi Arabia it would mean seeing a woman’s hair, her arm.

      Clearly, the dress doesn’t really provoke. Men in the U.S. and Saudi Arabia are completely capable of appreciating a woman’s form and controlling themselves.

  153. Teacher to Girl student: Why are you smiling? What are you doing with your mobile phone)
    (Teaher read the text of guy ‘X’ read as ‘I love you’)
    Teacher: That day you complained against the guy ‘Y’ for texting you ‘I love you’ message.
    Girl: Sir, Guy ‘X’ is cute, smart and handsome.

    Give me a single answer; what does such girls deserve?

  154. This is so wrong!!! A woman has the right to dress the way she pleases. However, believing this has no impact on her chance of being a victim of rape is wrong and it is dangerous to think and teach otherwise.

    • Not saying it has no impact. But the rapist should be blamed. Not her.

      Women aren’t blamed for looking at a man or smiling at him — because it’s not her fault. She shouldn’t be blamed for the way she dresses either.

  155. I believe that a woman should be able to walk around completely naked in our society and not even be touched inappropriately by a man or a woman. Clothing and rape have absolutely nothing to do with eachother. You could (as the article describes) be covered from head to toe in cloth and still be raped or assaulted. Rapists will make excuses for their behavior because they have without doubt undergone some trauma in their lives and now are acting out and hurting both men and women. As a counselor for Rape Trauma Services, I believe hurt people hurt others and its never the survivors fault the act occurred. Even thinking that there could be a correlation between clothing and rape creates so much more fear and tension in our society for men and women of all ages. Why should myself as a young woman have to modify my personal identity so I won’t be raped? When did our society take a crime such as rape and try to take the heat off the perpetrator for what they did by blaming the victim for assault.

  156. jaylene caampued

    i have heard a couple times from people like “oh, she probably deserved to get raped look how she was acting.” or “she asked for it, look how she was dressed.” i totally disagree with those kind of remarks. nobody deserves to get raped, and nobody would want that to happen to them. just because some women dress a certain way for example, half tops showing their belly button, skin tight dresses showing their curves, or tiny shorts does not mean they are seeking sexual attention. some women just like to dress like that. it doesnt matter if a women is in daisey dukes or sweats, when its all said and done the man had the choice to decide weather or not he is or is not going to rape a women. like the article said, no matter how much you cover up or try to look the other way to avoide them they are still going to rape.

  157. There is no excuse to rape somebody, only theroies to explain why these lost souls do it. Women have every right to dress however they want and should be able to do so without being worried about rapists preying on them.
    So apparently there are different motives behind rapists, but I want to explain that anybody who rapes anybody is extremely amoral.
    During a genocide in Darfur, women were gang raped repeatedly by vicious racists who were trying to destroy their tribe. I don’t think they necassarily wanted to be sexually gratified. THey raped exclusively to inflict physical and emotional pain.
    One of my friends confided in me that she had been raped by different men on different occasions, and to be honest I wasn’t suprised. THis is a girl who I would take to parties and she would inadvertently lead the guys on. She talked about sex in a casual tone and start dancing provacatively in front of a bunch of young men she had just met. When my friend tried to make a move on her, she rejected him as nicely as she could, leaving him feeling embarrassed and mildly deceived. She definitely led him on but this wasn’t her fault. It was just part of her personality. Maybe she could have handled things better by not behaving this way because she seems to leave guys with feelings of resentment and leaving them feeling teased, buy any time she had ever been raped was never her fault.
    Do men get raped? If I wear nothing but a pair of shorts will some guy try to rape me? I doubt it. Most rapists are men and most rape victims are women. So if men can dress sexy without having to worry than women should be able to as well.
    I smile at women all the time. It never in my life occured to me that they may suspect they could get raped just for smiling back. It’s very sad if sexual assault truly causes so much distrust between men and women.

  158. I agree with Geneva, it’s the rapist thing it’s never the victims fault. If a man is going to rape you, he is going to rape you. I do not believe anyone should be blamed for something that was out of their control, which is something we do see or hear about from other cultures. I know a lot of Muslim countries believe that if a woman is raped it was her fault and it brings shame upon the family. I also do not believe you should be scared to make eye contact or smile at someone because he might rap you. I know I was taught all my life that making eye contact and smiling at people was just good manners. I have never heard of “Never look at a man,” or “Never smile at a man, he may rape you!” those were never sayings in my family. It should not matter how someone dresses or who they hold themselves around men.

  159. I dont think that wearing something sexy means the girl is a bad girl or anything, a nerd can go to the club and wear stillettos and a mini skirt or a cheer leader can go to school and wear sweats everyday. Id say its all about the boy language. Body language says alot.

    Personally i dont think that anything a person wears or something a person does can really determine if their capable of being raped or not. Rape isnt something you choose , it just happens. You can be wearing anything, any age, or any gender and be raped. If the question is can something a girl wears provoke her being raped?, then what can a guy wear that can prone him to being raped? Its purely the rapist themeselves.

  160. adriana cholico

    I have been to too many places where individuals dress in all sorts of ways. Woman may wear jeans, shorts, dresses even bikinis and are still asked to dance. Not the I am going to go behind you and see if you choose to dance with me kind of thing, but the very rare way where a man goes up to a lady and asks to dance. The idea that wearing clothing that may reveal a bit of your skin can cause rape is outrageous. If that were to be the cases then like the article states, we would have all been victims of rapists a long time ago. Having someone say they rapped their victim because of their clothing was too sexual for them to resist is simply using that as a lame excuse. No one is allowed to feel they were at fault for getting rapped because you didn’t do anything to deserve it. Each individual is entitled to wear what they like without fearing for their safety. Assault is caused because someone decided their actions are worth the consequences. Sexy dressing is an expression not a statement to get rapped.

  161. I do not believe that the most provocative dress causes rape. I have seen how rapists rape the most innocent girls so you should not judge. But on the other hand you should respect your body. I have noticed girls dressing very open — everywhere, almost showing everything and I believe some girls do it because they like the attention from others. But being raped does not have anything to do with the way you dress.

  162. Emelina Weaver

    I don’t think women should have to change what they wear in order to make sure their not a victim to being raped! If I could live life with walking down the street naked and not having to worry what other people would say, get arrested, or worrying about those perves who of course try to get at every girl they see walking, then I would so live my life that way because it would save me a hell a lot of money on just clothes alone. How women choose to dress is on them. Some girls choose to show their anatomy a bit more than others. From that, others tend to think they are crying out for attention or love that other people look at them. I don’t think dressing provocative or showing a bit of anatomy is the clear role for “Rape Me!” but it does play a part. Because, like I said before those type of girls get mistaken or read as the ones who want attention, who loved to be looked at, and have all the guys staring at them. Guys of course, should just not rape. Are they? Who knows? Most likely not if you were to ask me. But that’s the way this world is unfortunately, and with wrong actions come consequences. Society is too judge-mental and some men these days are pigs thinking life today is what the world was back then. Correction, The world has changed you don’t get everything you want anymore at the snap of a finger!

  163. Rape is never the right thing.Rather if my outfit bring sex appeal or not.Even considering to change someone sense of style or individuality in fabric put on their body, should make it more easier to have men who are out looking to prey on woman help ….

  164. I agree with previous posters, I do not believe that a woman’s clothing has anything to do with whether or not she will get raped. A woman should be able to dress however she wants without being objectified. She shouldnt have to stop and think as she is getting dressed in the morning and think “hmm this skirt is too short, I might get raped if I wear this.” That is absolutely ridiculous. Maybe there is a correlation between the two but if there is, the amount is small. I think a man who is going to rape a woman, doesnt think about how she is dressed but whether or not he can overpower her. The excuse “she was dressed like a slut, she wanted it” is just another way of putting the blame on the victim. Rape is never the victims fault no matter what the circumstance.

  165. Like you said in the last sentence… that a woman has total right to her own body and the clothes she puts on it are not what is at fault for a person to rape her. Whether that rapist wants to admit it or not, the clothes she wears is not the least of what their mind is thinking about nor is it what triggers those thoughts. A woman should be able to put on an outfit and when she asks her friend if it looks ok the question shouldn’t be “hey do you think if I wear this that I’ll get raped tonight?” That sounds insane. Now for a man to retreat to the excuse, “well she looked like a slut who wanted it” makes some sense because well men don’t come up with very good excuses in my opinion. To commit rape is a decision that I feel is not based on the clothes the victim is wearing. I feel that it is more of an act of male dominance over a woman. Now, if a woman may be wearing something a little bit provacative so be it, but I don’t ever think a woman would intentionally put something on and think to her self “Oh I really hope I get raped in this one!”. I personally don’t understand why a woman would ever want to intetionally put herself through such a traumatic event so painful and psychologically damaging as rape.

  166. Gladys Knowles-Price

    I agree with Meagan when she says that clothing has nothing to do with being raped. If a rapist is going to attack, he’s going to do it no matter what the girl is wearing. Though I feel that a woman should be able to dress how ever she likes, I believe that provocative attire can cause unwanted attention. I like to dress sexy, but I dress that way because I am into fashion. I would never dress sleazy because, I do not want to give a person the wrong idea, but that is my opinion. This is a free country and I believe people should be able to wear what they want without having to worry about what others may think or do.

  167. Thinking that women secretly desire sexual advances and show this by doning sexualized clothing is another way our society blames women for rape and in a way victimizes the men who commit what is in my eyes the worst crime a person can commit towards someone else. It is a moronic and dangerous way thinking that can only lead to more of this crime. While I do feel it is important to for people to consider what they and where they are wearing it. It is unreasonable to attribute a women being raped to what cloths she wears. Rape, and I say this only from what has been described to me, is a horrific experience that can leave victims scarred for life. If a society blames this crime on types of dress and the women who wear them we will continue the cycle of denial about the nature of certain men and true justice can never be administered. Through this the concept of justice and civility amongst a group of people will erode away and the true monsters among us will be able to continue their lives unpunished and essentially empowered to commit the crime again if they know they will not be persecuted.

  168. Francesca DeVore

    I feel that there is no excuse for rape in any circumstance . A woman should never be left to think of an out come resulting in rape from result of her clothing. A person whether it be a man or woman uses clothing as a way to show their personality, style, and express them selves, though both woman and men dress in their own unique and personal style it seems that woman are the only gender that is left to deal with any negative outcomes from their clothing choices.
    I believe the thought that provocative apparel is a reason or result for rape is a form of excuse for an unforgivable act. It is without a doubt that the way some woman choose to dress can be significantly more provocative then others but this should not be used to justify rape. A woman should be free to feel confident and happy wearing the clothes they feel represents their personal style and sense of self as a woman without a mans input or any worries that harm might come to them.
    Rape is an awful act and should not be something that is a constant reminder to woman as they choose their clothing every day, it certainty is not something a man worries as they pick theirs.

  169. Meseret Workneh

    I would say provocative dressing can trigger rape to a certain degree, although this may not be the sole cause of rape. I totally agree with the author that for rape to take place, someone other than the victim would have to commit the act and that; this person is certainly void of self control.

    To substantiate the fact stated above that provocative dressing may trigger rape; I would use the following example: A woman or lady’s style of dressing may trigger rape in the case where a rapist already exists. As such her exposed style of dressing would merely act as a trigger in his mind, and he would begin to fantasize then act. Perhaps there may be no occurrence of rape if the lady or woman was decently dressed. Again this is no guarantee since the author points out that people rape for different reasons such as retaliation or the need to feel manhood or power. It should be noted that, some rapist only rape women with similar features or women that look alike, again, in this case, the style of dressing would have no impact for this particular rapist.

    Since one is therefore not sure of the sole determining factor of rape, I would advise that, women should dress the way they want to, however with some degree of decency, but above all should be careful and alert as they go along.

  170. I don’t think clothing has anything to do with being raped. If a rapist is going to attack, he’s going to do it no matter what the girl is wearing. Yes, when girls dress up, or “provacitively” it can be tempting for a rapist, or any man for that matter, but in the end, the girl will be naked anyways whether she’s fully dressed or in as little as possible. There are plenty of men out there who can abide by the “you can look but don’t touch” rule, so if a rapist is trying to use the woman’s outfit as an excuse, then that is pathetic. I know somebody who was seeing this guy, and if they were in another location, she probably would have slept with him, but she wasn’t comfortable with where they were and she said no multiple times, but the guy continued to force her to have intercourse. I definitely consider this rape because it was against her consent and even though she knew the guy, he took advantage of her against her will because he saw an opportunity to get away with it. This happened in broad daylight and she was wearing nothing out of the ordinary, just jeans and a t-shirt, so this concludes my opinion that clothing doesn’t matter.

  171. I Completely agree, clothing and rape do have a tricky correlation. But shouldn’t women be able to dress any way they would like to without having to think about the fact that they have a small percentage of running into a man that will think she’s provoking him to rape her? I also agree with the fact that ok, if it’s going to be that way then women shouldn’t even smile or say hello to any male because they will automatically want to rape her. That doesn’t seem right to do either. It doesn’t seem to fair to match the way a women dresses (which CAN be sexy sometimes) with the decision to rape.

  172. Taylor Groseclose

    Women should never have to live with the fear that if they smile or make eye contact with a man that they could be raped.Women should not live their lives inferior to men and the threat of their actions. When men rape women, I believe their own insecurities about their manhood can be the cause, but this is absolutley not a justification. It seems completley insane and barbaric to me that men cannot control themselves and instead can brutally harm women. I firmly believe that it is never a woman’s fault when she is the victim of rape. However, it does not surprise me that a rapist would try to blame the woman in the aftermath to seek justification.

  173. No woman should ever be blamed for being raped. I don’t think it matters what she’s wearing, how she’s acting; no type of behavior could ever be a valid reason for that type of personal violation. I think saying that “a woman was asking for it” or other comments like that is an ignorant and evil statement. I would guess that people who say such things do not understand the pain and trauma rape would cause a woman. As a female, I don’t think how you dress is ever an invitation to another to touch you or any such actions against your will. I think fashion is a form of art, a way to express yourself and no form of art or fashion will ever be a cause of rape.

  174. I most definately agree, a womans clothing does not cause a man to act in any certain way. I suppose a man may think a woman might attention if she has her breats hanging out and her butt nearly showing, and that may or may not be the case that she wants attention. But to go as far as saying it “causes” rape is so far from being true. I have been a huge tomboy my whole life and never had a desire to dress sexy until I hit my 20’s and now I completely embrass it when I do dress up and I do feel sexy and like feeling that way. If someone would think that because I dress sexy that I derserve to be raped because of that I wouldn’t have words for that person.

  175. The last thing written here really stuck out to me “they have more right to a woman’s body than a woman does, herself”. I had never really thought about it that way, and I wonder if men who rape are consciously thinking “I have more right to her body than she does” or just that them being male means they have a right to whatever they want- including women, and sex. I don’t know if that makes sense, but it seems different to me.

    The whole clothing linked to rape thing was very present in my mind when I was in high school. I wore lingere tops as shirts, very low cut, tight, and short things, along with high heels, and lots of make up. I was called a slut, and sometimes worse, but the only times where I was ever assaulted happened when I wore loose fitting jeans, and my older brother’s sweatshirts. I was approached from behind by two sometimes three older boys (when I was in sixth and seventh grade) one would throw my sweatshirt over my head, and hold my arms back, and one would grab at my chest, then they would all run away laughing.

    This was something I had forgotten until rather recently, and therefore had never thought about whether or not it played a role in how I view myself as a woman- or how I interact with men, or even how I dress today.

    There was a song I really enjoyed when I was in high school that says “I have a right to dress sexy, when and where I want without being harassed for it- being told that I asked for it” still love that song, it’s true. But, yes I appreciated your distinction between clothing being linked to rape on the side of misread cues, as opposed to sexy dressing causing rape. Thanks- this was great.

  176. This can most definitely be a tricky situation. I’ve been told by my mom many times to be careful with what I wear. I might lead someone on. What I don’t get though is how is dressing cute or sexy the girl’s fault if she gets raped? Yes, I believe you shouldn’t go overboard but still the man should be able to control himself. A man has to be a very sick person if that’s the only way he can get sex. It’s pretty sad actually. So, no I don’t believe it’s the woman’s fault ever. Everyone needs to know how to control their body and their emotions no matter what the situation. It’s just a part of life.

    • Most stranger rapists have regular sex partners. Some just think that “stolen kisses are sweeter” when it’s her vag kissing his dick.
      A rapist may be drawn to choose the cute dresser over a more conservative dresser. A rapist may not have been a rapist until he spotted the alluringly dressed target. It’s still his decision.
      Even if she’s stark naked in a park at 3 am it isn’t any justification for raping her. Seeing if she’d like to have sex, yes. But forcing her, no. Injuring her, no.

  177. It’s all in the mind, or whether that person is doing something for pleasure, because they enjoy scaring and dominating others, making others feel pain, or they could be unstable. There are many reasons why people do what they do that make them truly believe they are justified in doing so when they are really not. If a man is dressed provocatively it does not mean that women want him. He may be attractive or he might not be. This does not mean that women want to automatically rape him for their own pleasure. If people really thought about this issue they would see that it doesn’t matter what one wears or what one does.

  178. In reference to rape and provocative dress-

    I do believe that there can be a correlation between women who dress skimpily, and rape. Not to say that there is always a correlation, but there can be. One thing we need to remember is that rape is not a crime of passion, it is a crime of violence, and this must be distinguished, because no matter how a woman dresses, the man with a predisposition to violence may go so far as to commit rape.

    Although I believe that we women should dress how we want, when we want, I also believe that if a woman chooses to dress skimpily that she is only furthering the image of women as sexual objects and playthings, and taking we women another step backwards in society. It is one thing to dress attractively, but another to dress skimpily. And I do believe that women who dress skimpily face another issue entirely apart from being looked upon as sex objects and provoking violence or rape, which is that their boyfriend, date, partner, or employer might think that they are seeking sex and/or attention by dressing this way.

    Again, don’t get me wrong. I am all about looking beautiful as a woman. But the last thing that I want to do is to dress in such a way that I draw the ‘wrong kind of attention.’ Attention to my body only. Because it would objectify me as a sexual object only. As women we must be proud of ourselves for who we are, not for our ‘big boobs’ or how high our heels are on any given day. Now that I am a little older, I feel sorry for women who degrade themselves to look more attractive for men in this way. I would never, ever have a ‘boob job’ or wear high heels that hurt my feet. What a step backwards for us.

    Elaine Balliet.

    • How a woman is attired may influence a rapist or potential rapist to choose her instead of another, but from what is known of common behavior of rapists it’s a minor factor.
      Women should wear whatever they feel is appropriate for the occasion. They should attire themselves to present the appearance they want to the people they are interested in impressing.
      Burkhas and chadors don’t deter rapists. If anything women in Muslim countries and regions are victimized by rapists worse than in the west.
      Women in nudist resorts aren’t raped as much as clothed women elsewhere, from what information is available.

  179. Nicole McCalister

    I do not believe that a woman can wear anything or not wear anything to provoke rape. Rape in definition is forceful, unwanted, violent, and malicious. Allowing our society to think or believe that women’s attire is the blame for rape or any other unwanted or unsolicited act is just plain ignorant. If we, as a society, allow excuses like this negotiate who is to blame for a woman being raped, then I would assume all women are to blame, if we use this theory. Rape is a serious thing and it devastates a woman’s life. I do not believe that there is anything that warrants rape, an unwanted sexual pass, or taking advantage of a woman, rather she dresses like a nun or a stripper. If a woman is interested in a man–she will let him know!

  180. I feel that although a woman’s clothing plays a trivial role in making a man decide whether he wants to rape her, it probably does contribute a little in helping him make the decision. If for example there are two women a man sees on the street at night, one of whom is wearing sensuous clothes which make her body appear more alluring, I feel that he will choose the “sexier” lady over the other.
    However, I do admit that it doesn’t necessarily have to do too much with appearance as the following case shows. A notorious rapist, the South Side Rapist raped over 100 women over the course of 25 years and claims that their “traits and appearance were irrelevant” ( and that he raped them simply for his pleasure. If most rapists think this way, then we can conclude that raping a woman has to do more with gaining pleasure and control over her body than with doing so simply because she’s attractive.

  181. Absolutely not! In my opinion a women is free to dress any way she may please! That is the beauty of America vs Saudi Arabia. Just because a women may wear a short skirt or provacative clothing, does not mean there is a right for her to be sexually assaulted in any form. For anyone to believe there is, is a shame on them. That is just like saying when children are alone they deserve to be kidnapped. Ridiculous for the thought to cross anyones mind that would be right? Well so is a justifiable rape. There is no such thing, and thankfully there are no laws that permit a man or women to sexually assault another human. Our laws are created for freedom to be who we are as long as we are not hurting society or the government, and really, what harm can a sexy dress do?

    • yeah, the same thing we can say that, hey’ i’m rich man, i can wear expensive clothing, or show my wealth, etc, you don’t have any right to steal/rob from me..hahaha…dont be fooled by your freedom of expression, in this world, we can’t control of what other people can do to us, so it’s your choice, when bad things happened due to crazy people, we can’t regret, not everyone is good guy, a lot of bad guy out there

    • Yeah and if a child is alone there’s a higher probability of kidnapping.

      The rejection of correlation from your gender is headache inducing…

      • Rape and sexual harassment are on the increase in Egypt, even though women are covering themselves more than they did in the 1950s. Of course, the women are blamed for letting a little bit of hair fall from their veil. “Adding flame to the fire.” But not really.

        Or, rapists say it’s a woman’s fault because she look at him or smiled at him. Fanning those flames. But really not.

        Blaming women is meant to take blame away from the rapist and put it on the victim.

        And to control women: what they can wear, where they can go, who they can look at or smile at…

        Just like an adult tries to control a child.

        (At least in your mind. The reality is that almost all kidnappings in the US are done by a noncustodial parent.)

  182. yes, i completely agree, i don’t think it matter’s about how a women dresses, or how she looks at the male, or how she show’s her legs too him, or even how she talks too him. it’s the mans emotions and how he think that she wants him too have sex with her, or even rape her. i’ve heard of men raping the most innocent of looking females, so i definitely don’t think it has anything too do with what she wears, but how the man is thinking she’s a “bad girl” inside, or “she wants me, she just needs some pushing”, or even man handling, kind of thing. i suspect it’s all in the male’s mind.

  1. Pingback: Can Girls Own Their Bodies or Nah? | Neighborhood Neuro

  2. Pingback: 6 Myths About Sexual Assault Highlighted By Susan Brownmiller’s Comments On “The Problem Of … | Sex Offender Alert Registry

  3. Pingback: Rape Culture Judged By Clothing | Fashioning Sociology

  4. Pingback: When will be stop being told to be more careful? | A life unexamined

  5. Pingback: Paper two sources | Ayinda85

Thoughts? (Comments will appear after moderation)

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: