Date of Award

Spring 1998

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Sociology & Criminal Justice


Applied Sociology

Committee Director

Dianne C. Carmody

Committee Member

James A. Nolan

Committee Member

Carole L. Seyfrit

Call Number for Print

Special Collections LD4331.S62 W37


This study investigates the racial differences in rape myth acceptance among college women. There has been little research on the topic of rape which examines solely the opinions of women. Black and white college women {N=623) completed a survey which measured the degree of acceptance or rejection of false beliefs about rape, rape victims, or rapists. These false beliefs were termed rape myths. The myths demean the victim and support stereotypes about rape. Past research suggests that blacks accept rape myths more than whites, and that victims accept rape myths more than nonvictims. This study's analyses suggest that women as well as victims generally reject the rape myths, and their attitudes did not differ dramatically by race. Women's similar socialization may be an explanation for this finding.


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