Student Perceptions of Reproductive Health Consequences Resulting from Rape

Lisa C. Kistler, Claire M. Renzetti, Diane Follingstad, Caihong R. Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Persistently high rates of campus rape combined with changing legal landscapes surrounding reproductive health make student perceptions of the reproductive health consequences resulting from rape an important topic of research. In this study, we analyze student perceptions of a hypothetical campus rape in which a victim experiences no medical consequences, becomes pregnant, or contracts a sexually transmitted infection (STI) as a result of rape. Students in the sample recommended consistently severe punishment for the perpetrator across all three experimental conditions but viewed victim guilt and responsibility to be greatest for the rape resulting in pregnancy and least for the rape resulting in an STI. Qualitatively, students voiced strong sympathy for the victim due to the STI, yet rarely discussed the impact of pregnancy. We recommend that future research investigate the perceptions, prevalence, and consequences of reproductive health outcomes resulting from campus rape and suggest a reproductive justice framework for doing so.

Original languageEnglish
JournalSociological Inquiry
StateAccepted/In press - 2024

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2024 Alpha Kappa Delta: The International Sociology Honor Society.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science


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