Sexual Violence in History: A Bibliography

compiled by Stefan Blaschke


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First published: October 1, 2023 - Last updated: October 1, 2023


Speaker: Kathryn Burnham and Robert Nicewarner

Title: The Real Rape Script and Sexual Assault Depictions in Law and Order: Special Victims Unit

Subtitle: -

Conference: 74th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Criminology: Institutions, Cultures, and Crime (November 14-17, 2018) - Online Program

Session: 650. Sexual Assault and Media Spaces (Chair: Kathryn Burnham)

Place: November 15, 2018

Date: Atlanta, Georgia, United States

Language: English

Keywords: Modern History: 20th Century, 21st Century | American History: U.S. History | Types: Rape; Representations: Films / Law & Order: Special Victims Unit


Link: -


- Kathryn Burnham, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, West Virginia University - ResearchGate

- Robert Nicewarner, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, West Virginia University - ResearchGate

Abstract: » While previous research has examined the role media plays on the depictions and individual perceptions of crime, there is a dearth of studies that examine the use of rape scripts, specifically the "real rape script", in fictional crime dramas. Moreover, studies have shown that the consumption of such media certainly has implications for the ways in which individuals, including, but not limited to, perpetrators, victims, and criminal justice officials, define sexual assault or rape. Findings from a content analysis of Law and Order: Special Victims Unit episodes that depict adult sexual assault indicate that the "real rape script" is used across 19 seasons, however, over time, the use of the "real rape script" has decreased. The purpose of this paper is to examine why this might be the case by exploring whether the sex of directors, writers, and producers over time influences the use of the "real rape script" in Law and Order: Special Victims Unit.« (Source: Online Program)

Wikipedia: History of the Americas: History of the United States | Television: American crime drama television series / Law & Order: Special Victims Unit | Sex and the law: Rape / Rape in the United States