A Study of the Social Correlates of Rape Myth Acceptance

John Marcineck, The College of Wooster


This thesis explores student attitudes about rape myths, by comparing the variables of gender, participation in athletics, membership in a section or a club, age, field of study, and self-reponed socio-economic status. This paper will determine whether people believe the myths about rape and the observer's attributions of responsibility for rape. The victim-precipitated and the feminist theories are used to compare the results of the sample. These issues are studied by developing a rape myth scale which was administered to 155 students at the College of Wooster. The findings suggest that: ( 1) gender differences exist, with women being the more likely to reject rape myths,(2) participation in athletes does affect the way individuals view rape myths, (3) membership in a section or club does not affect the way an individual views rape myths, (4) the younger the student the more likely they are to accept rape-supponive beliefs, (5) the students' field of study does have something to do with an individuals' beliefs with social science major being more likely to accept rape myths, and (6) socio-economic status will also have an affect on the way an individual will view rape myths. Future research suggests that behavior as well as attitude is tested.


© Copyright 1993 John Marcineck