Sexual Coercion: Abuse and Perceptions Essay

2016 Words9 Pages
History of Abuse Predicting Current Experiences and Perceptions of Sexual Coercion Sexual aggression among college students has been a popular topic of examination for the past three decades. One of the reasons for the repeated analysis is the fact that sexual aggression remains a common and enduring experience among college students. An early survey on this topic found that 54% of college women reported experiencing some sort of sexual victimization (Koss, Gidycz, & Wisniewski, 1987). That same year, Muehlenhard and Linton reported that 78% of female college students experienced some sort of sexual coercion and 15% reported experiencing a rape. Studies since then have consistently replicated those findings. Sexual coercion is…show more content…
Missing in the literature was a measure to evaluate both the prevalence rates and the perceptions of sexual initiation strategies when it applied personally to the participant. An understanding of individual and situational characteristics associated with how coercive acts are perceived is important in order to understand fully the dynamics of sexually coercive interactions. One factor that may cause a person to misperceive coercive influence is having a history of prior victimization. Current studies show that women with a past history of sexual abuse are more likely to experience subsequent sexual coercion. Turchik, Probst, Irvin, Chau, and Gidycz (2009) found that women with a history of sexual coercion were more likely to experience sexual coercion again during the follow-up period of the study. Additionally, the women who had been victimized were also more likely to have misperceptions about rape and sexual violence. Furthermore, a study which examined women’s ability to perceive risk for sexual aggression from an acquaintance found that women who had been sexually victimized in the past needed higher levels of both clear and ambiguous risk factors before feeling uncomfortable or at risk (Norris, Nurius, & Graham, 1999). One study that tested the hypothesis that history of sexual assault affects the victim’s risk detection found that a history of victimization negatively
Open Document