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Writing the SurvivorThe Rape Novel in Late Twentieth-Century American Fiction$
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Robin E. Field

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781942954835

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781942954835.001.0001

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Writing the Male Rape Survivor

Writing the Male Rape Survivor

The Rape Novel in the Twenty-First Century

(p.189) Chapter Five Writing the Male Rape Survivor
Writing the Survivor

Robin E. Field

Liverpool University Press

The rise of the rape novel featuring female victims inspired the telling of more stories about male rape victims. Just as the early stories about the sexual assault of women portrayed rape as nonexistent, inconsequential, or the fault of the women and girls themselves, the stories of male rape often have belittled the victims and position the male rape victim as an object of derision, scorn, and even amusement. As the revelations of several high-profile sexual abuse cases early in the twenty-first century brought to light the plight of young boys being assaulted by trusted older men, male victims are now being treated with the concern and sympathy that women experienced in the 1970s. The political activism inherent in the rape novel—educating its readers, offering community to the victims, and encouraging social activism and change to societal attitudes—will continue as the stories of male rape survivors are told in greater numbers.

Keywords:   Male Rape, Victim, Survivor, Sexual Abuse, 21st century, Deliverance, The Kite Runner, The Kid, Blu’s Hanging, Any Man

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