Attitudes Toward Women, Rape Myths, and Rape Perceptions Among Male Police Officers in South Korea

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Social Work


Because of the critical roles of police officers in dealing with rape cases, the purpose of the current study was to examine the perceptions of rape among male police officers, with a particular focus on how attitudes toward women, rape survivor myths, and myths about the impact of rape are related to perceptions of rape scenarios. Utilizing cross-sectional data from 236 male police officers in South Korea, results of structural equation modeling indicated that attitudes toward women and rape survivor myths were positively related to rape perceptions. Those who had stereotypical attitudes toward women and those who had stronger beliefs in rape survivor myths were more likely to endorse rape-supportive attributions in rape scenarios. Results also revealed that officers' attitudes toward women were indirectly related to rape perceptions through rape survivor myths. Moreover, previous attendance at a sexual assault educational program was inversely related to rape perceptions, such that those who attended an educational program were less likely to endorse rape-supportive attributions in rape scenarios. The implications of these findings for practice and policy are discussed, including the need for the Korean legal system to recognize the need for self-determination and for police training to be better targeted and ongoing.

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Psychology of Women Quarterly





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