This article looks specifically at the predictors of rape myths among men arrested for trying to hire street prostitutes.
In an effort to better understand the men who patronize prostitutes and their contribution to a system that often involves violence against women, this study explores the level of “rape myth acceptance” and the predictors of rape myth acceptance among 1,286 men arrested for trying to hire street prostitutes in San Francisco (n=950), Las Vegas (n=254), and Portland, Oregon (n=82). The term rape myths refers to a set of attitudes believed to support sexual violence against women. Underlying this idea is the proposition that violence against women is not the psychopathological behavior of a small number of sick men, but a sociocultural phenomenon in which persons may rely on a series of culturally available attitudes to justify and support their violent behavior. Questionnaires were administered to arrested clients prior to participation in programs designed to discourage reoffense. Results indicate low levels of rape myth acceptance among respondents, although a small number expressed higher levels. The strongest predictors of rape myth acceptance were the attraction to violent sexuality, sexual conservatism, and thinking about sex less frequently. In summary, the picture that emerges from this study is not one of an unusual set of disturbed or violent men but of men who may be very similar to men in general. References
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