The Geography of Rape
A Study of Gender Equality and the Legal Status of Rape in Norway.
About the project
This project is tasked to analyze how the Norwegian legal system process rape cases. Factors related to acquittal rates and sentencing practices, and how rape is framed as a social and gendered problem will be examined through interviews with legal professionals, observation of rape trials and a multivariate statistical analysis of sentencing practice. Key issues to be adressed concern which social and spatial factors affect assessments of culpability, and how such assessments are related to cultural perceptions and narratives about gender, power and sexuality more generally. A second focus concerns an exploration of spatio-legal norms and the affective qualities of the legal space. Thirdly, lawyers’ reflections about their role as gatekeepers of the rule of law and their narrative and emotional labor in rape trials will be analyzed. Finally, policy implications for women's sexual citizenship are condidered.
The thesis draws on theoretical perspectives in feminist geography, theories of citizenship and symbolic interactionism, with a particular emphasis on Erving Goffman's dramaturgical theories.
The project is part of the Gender Equality Group at the Centre for Gender Research.
The University of Oslo. Period: 2011-2015.