The Culture of Prison Rape and Consensual Sex among Inmates
Tomac, Rachelle A.
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Prison Rape is one of the largest problems facing administration in the overcrowded and understaffed institutions of the United States. There has been a lack of accurate research to try to understand the culture of rape and consensual sex within the prison system. The current study being conducted at the Begun Center for Violence Prevention, Research and Education at Case Western Reserve University under the direction of Dr. Mark Fleisher, is using the collection technique of ethno-methodology to understand the complexities of prison rape and to learn the specialized terminology. The goal of this study is to offer prison administration new insight into the culture of prison rape and to obtain the knowledge to design other accurate studies. Preliminary results from this study show that prison gangs may play a role in the rapes that are occurring. Gangs follow distinct racial lines. and it is the tension between these groups that has the potential to lead to rape. Religion is also a distinctive feature that may lead to splits between groups. Because of these splits. inmates may use rape as a way to show dominance over another group. Thus, the study that is proposed to follow the current research will investigate the relationship between gangs, race, religion and the rape of the members of these different groups. The study will give an understanding of the social dynamics of these different groups and will ultimately provide administration with the knowledge to reduce rape within the prison walls.