Freshmen from two floors in the Quad joined Anthropology Professor Peggy Reeves Sanday last night for an intense -- and often disturbing -- debate about rape on college campuses. In her recently released book Fraternity Gang Rape: Sex, Brotherhood and Privilege on Campus, Sanday asserts that the initiation rituals of some fraternities encourage gang rape. She told about 50 freshman assembled in Bodine Lounge that the prevalence of rape on campuses does not reflect innate male tendencies, but results from some of those rituals. Both male and female students countered Sanday's position, saying that women should bear some responsibility for being raped since they allow themselves to become drunk beyond their control. Some said that women must accept the danger of rape in fraternities, and be cautious and assertive in order to avoid it. Sanday cited statistics reporting that one out of every four women on college campuses will be sexually assaulted, and that 85 percent of gang rapes in this country occur in fraternities. She said that university administrators in general do little to decrease the threat of rape faced by female students. "I don't see any effort to question the traditional priveleges that fraternities enjoy," Sanday said, speaking specifically about the University. Some students agreed with the professor's points and disagreed with their peers'. Stephanie Cuba, a College freshman, argued against the idea of "blaming the victim." "I am accountable for my actions, but I shouldn't have to worry about getting raped," she said. Several male students criticized Sanday for "being to harsh on men in general." "Most fraternities don't behave in a way that is abusive to women," said Scott Pomerantz, a College freshman. Sanday seemed dismayed that students focused on whether or not she liked men, instead of discussing the problem of widespread abuse. "I'm not harsh on men," said Sanday. "It's the institution and ideology that privileges this sort of behavior that I'm attacking."Comments powered by Disqus
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