Taken together, the qualitative and quantitative approaches give a more complete picture of why many women do not acknowledge their assault experiences as rape than data using only a single research paradigm. “For a positive social science, knowledge is constituted by the theoretical ordering of empirical observations of an objective reality. The data are descriptions of social behaviors and the subjective beliefs, attitudes, and values of individuals” (Comstock, 1994, p – 627). The goal of such a science is a causal analysis, explanations of what produces something else (e. g., scripts are associated with rape acknowledgment). Using the quantitative methods of logical positivism described in this quotation, we have identified some factors on which acknowledged and unacknowledged victims differ. The end goal is to use this knowledge to help us predict when a woman will or will not acknowledge a sexual assault experience as rape.
From the quantitative data we discovered some of the conditions that make a woman less likely to label her experience as rape, such as possessing a stranger rape script, using alcohol prior to the assault, or the assailant using some level of force. From qualitative research we learned why a rape victim does not label her experience as rape. Discourse analysis, for example, reveals the interpretations people give to their experiences and events; it reveals the norms, values, motives, and meanings shared by the community within which the individuals live. From Phillips’ (1996) research we gain insights into why large numbers of women are unacknowledged rape victims—we learn the reasons, meanings, and implications associated with acknowledging or not acknowledging their experience as rape. Phillips’ qualitative data inform us that for a college woman to acknowledge an experience as rape, she must change her conception of herself. The research shows why it is important for college women to avoid thinking of themselves as victims.
The qualitative approach underscores the importance of the woman’s constructed social reality and her constructed place in that reality. There may be pressures operating to lead a rape victim to construe her rape experience in such a way that it does not threaten the reality she has constructed. Although it is possible for women to change their constructions of reality and the discourses to which they adhere, this process is not easy. For example, Walker et al. (1996) reported that even when they provided an alternative context and an opportunity to change the male sexual drive discourse, their efforts were not effective. Guba and Lincoln (1994) suggested that although constructions may change, such change is most likely to occur when individuals are exposed to different constructions and given the opportunity to compare and contrast them through social interaction. Because women are not likely to discuss their rape experiences with others, the opportunities to change their discourses or perceptions of social reality are limited. Furthermore, even when they do discuss such experiences with friends, these friends are likely to reinforce the dominant discourses identified by Phillips (1996). Hence, the constructed reality that there is a natural progression leading to the man’s fulfillment of his sexual arousal despite the woman’s desire to avoid this is not likely to change, and women may feel pressure to interpret their rape experience to be consistent with this reality.
Both quantitative and qualitative research methods lead to the conclusion that what constitutes rape for college women is complex, multiply determined, and complicated. Phillips (1996) and Walker et al. (1996) found this complexity in their participants’ conflicting discourses on what it means to be a good woman, the nature of sexual danger, and victimization. Quantitative research comparing acknowledged and unacknowledged rape victims has identified several variables on which these groups differ. However, the extent to which these variables lead to rape acknowledgment or are by-products of how the woman labeled her experience is not clear. Because we cannot manipulate these variables systematically, causal relationships are difficult to establish.
Clearly, further research is needed to enhance the understanding of why some women do not label rape experiences as rape. From the quantitative research perspective, there may be additional variables not yet identified that are important predictors of rape acknowledgment. New statistical procedures also may be helpful. For example, larger samples of unacknowledged and acknowledged rape victims would permit the use of sophisticated statistical methods such as discriminant analysis or structural equation modeling. These statistical procedures could help researchers identify which variables are most important in predicting whether or not women would acknowledge their experiences as rape.
From a qualitative perspective, we need to expand our knowledge of the dominant discourses in our society, particularly of those dealing with relationships between women and men. Analyses of men’s dominant discourses and how their shared beliefs and values compare with those of women would be useful. This research could shed light on the reasons men engage in sexual intercourse after a woman has indicated she does not want to participate. Perhaps through research of this sort, women and men can come to share common dominant discourses about love, sex, and relationships such that all nonconsensual sex is acknowledged as rape.
‘We agree with АРА style in the use of the terms gay men and lesbians. However, most of the research reviewed in the meta-analysis used the terms homosexuality or homosexuals in the questions given to respondents. We therefore use those terms in order to reflect the content of the actual research questions.
 am assuming in my frequent use of the term our that both reader and writer come from the industrialized world, probably North America or Europe. Since situatedness is central to the argument of this chapter, it is imporant that both writer and reader acknowledge their own situatedness. I will refer to the idea of global culture as a new trend at some point, but a completely globalized culture is still some time away (although Coca-Cola and Elvis Presley seem to be everywhere already).
A lengthier elaboration of these ideas would identify multiple sexological models arising from the various multidisciplinary perspectives. However, in this chapter 1 can only allude to such subtleties as it paints a picture of a framework that sorely needs feminist interrogation.
 Sex is a universal natural force, a product of evolution. This encourages the researcher to identify universal variables and cause and effect relationships.
2. Sex is “a material phenomenon which involves an extended series of physical, physiologic and psychologic changes [which] could be subjected to precise instrumental measurement if objectivity among scientists and public respect for scientific research allowed such laboratory investigation” (Kinsey, Pomeroy, & Martin, 1948, p. 157).
3. Biological factors such as hormones are a major source of sexual desire and explain changes at the time of puberty and changes in sexual desire with age and in response to illness.
4. There are important and natural differences between the
*The recent growth of evolutionary psychology with its heavy reiteration of the falseness of the nature—nurture dichotomy and its insistence on interaction makes the use of a word like determined seem old-fashioned (e. g., Allgeier &. Wiederman, 1994). Yet the prevailing sexological model does view biological variables as deterministic, and I am not yet persuaded that evolutionary psychology is not just window-dressing for biological determinism (Lewontin, 1992).
The first college textbook I know of was by James L. McCary in 1963. Human Sexuality, (McCary, 1976). He was a long-term psychologist member of the American Association of Marriage and Family Counselors (founded in 1942).
’A subsequent volume used the same methods to study American women.
By texts is meant not just textbooks that are studied in schools, but all forms of representation and discourse about sexuality, such as laws, novels, films, news articles, magazine features, advertising, art, popular music, hymnals, sermons, advice books, television, and so forth. Different types of sexual discourse, of course, will have significance for different audiences, and the more fragmented the culture the less uniform the sexual authority.
This study was supported by a National Institute of Mental Health B/START award and a University of Tennessee Professional Development Award to Deborah Welsh.
‘A number of Masters and Johnson’s (1966) findings reported in this chapter are discordant with others’ research. We believe that this is likely due to the problematic methods of sampling used by Masters and Johnson, which may yield a distorted view of female sexuality, as feminist critics have noted (Tiefer, 1991). In particular, participants in Masters and Johnson’s research were required to be well-functioning sexually; for women, this was operationalized as having the capacity to have orgasms through vaginal intercourse, which may characterize only a minority of women in the United States.
 A different method was used for data collection with fathers (telephone interview) than with mothers (face-to-face interview in the home). In pilot testing, many fathers expressed an unwillingness to participate in the lengthy face-to-face interviews to which their wives or partners committed and expressed a strong preference for a telephone interview. In the interests of maintaining a high response rate from fathers, then, we opted for telephone interviews for them.
In order to maintain privacy and encourage honesty, interviewers were instructed to conduct the interview with only the woman in the room. Occasionally someone walked through the room, as recorded by interviewers in their notes, but in no case was a husband, other adult, or child above preschool age present in the room during the interview. Moreover, the sex questions were not administered or responded to orally (they were recorded by the woman on paper and sealed in an envelope before handing to the interviewer), further ensuring that responses would not be influenced by the presence of another person in the room.
 The primacy of intercourse—all men want is sex.
2. The availability of women—all women are sexually available to all men even when they pretend not to be.
3. The objectification of women—women exist to meet men’s needs, and are, or should be, passive.
A number of metaphors could have been chosen. These four are particularly prominent. Analyses of portrayals of romance in magazines confirm the frequency with which men are portrayed as strong, masterful, confident, aggressive, and protective of women, whereas women are portrayed as domestic, weak, passive, and emotionally dependent (Smith & Matre, 1975). Thurston (1987) describes the classical romance novel as reflecting traditional power dynamics between women and men, and states that “the romance novel continues to reaffirm the domestic, subservient role of women in a patriarchal society” (p. 70). Even more contemporary romance novels that present “Cinderella as feisty female” or “Cinderella as virgin temptress” ultimately acquiesce to the patriarchal vision. “In fact, the heroine’s militant demands are cast as threats to her own and the hero’s happiness and security, and she is confronted and humbled repeatedly until she sees the error of her ways and embraces traditional male/fcmale complementarity as a relationship style. . . she is led gradually and forcefully by him to the realization that her attempts to assume power and to enjoy sexual freedom will bring her own ruin. In the end, she not only accepts his domination but rejoices in it” (Hubbard, 1985, p. 119). The complex links between sex and violence are explored in depth in a series of articles edited by Dines and Humez (1995) entitled “Modes of Sexual Representation T. Romance Novels and Slasher Films.” They state that “romance novels and slasher novels appear to have in common the presentation of women as passive victims of sadistic male victimizers. This is most obvious in the narrative formula of the slasher” (p. 162). They suggest that this remains the case because of readers’ actual gendered subjectivity, defined by race, class, and other social experiences, in spite of recent critiques suggesting multiple and complex interpretations of the text.