An Assessment of Causes of Rape and its Sociohealth Effects: The Case of Female Victims in Kirkos Sub-City, Addis Ababa

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Addis Ababa University


The study has focused on the causes of rape and its socio-health effects. Moreover, it attempted to identify the demographic profile of rapists from victims’ point of view and coping mechanisms that victims used to adjust themselves with the problems they encountered due to rape. The target population of the study is females who are victims of rape in ‘kirkos’ sub-city. The researcher employed qualitative data in which in-depth interview and key informants interview were held to collect comprehensive and detailed information. The study has found that all causes of rape are the manifestation of unequal power relation between men and women. Patriarchy and gender role socialization were prominent issues that have emerged as a major cause of rape. The study has also found out that poverty is one of the causes as well as the consequence of rape. The study has found that the stigma and wrong perceptions associated with raped females are identified as major challenges to seek help from legal bodies and health institutions. Furthermore, the thesis found evidence that the difficulty in protecting women’s human rights and bring rapists for prosecution are laid on the weakness of law enactment bodies; delayed reaction of the court, being reluctant and undisciplined acts were identified as contributory factors that discourage actual and potential victims to report to the legal bodies. Thus, it increases more number of offenders and potential rapists as the crime kept as secret. Lack of information and supervision, strategies used by rapists to commit rape and using alcohol/drugs were also explored as causes of rape. The study has found that rape has a devastating effect on victims’ social, physical, psychological, educational and economical well beings. Unwanted pregnancy, abortion and sexually transmitted disease like HIV/AIDS are the immediate consequences of rape. All impacts left deep and lasting consequences on the mental health of the victims, their families as well as the society as a whole



Gender Studies