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On Date Rape Essay Sample

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A critical analysis

In this article, Camille Paglia talks about the growing risk of rapes as women demand more freedom without understanding the fact that it is their own responsibility to take care of themselves. The author starts her article by stating that in olden times, women had always been chaperoned and there had always been strict rules of propriety placed upon them. It was only in the 1960s that women starting breaking rules and demanding freedom, but even then, they always kept in mind that they were taking risks. The first paragraph takes a confused stance, with the author claiming that in the 60s, women were aware of the risks but still broke rules, with the author even going to live at a male friend’s apartment despite the pleas of her aunts.

She claims that today, young women want freedom but do not acknowledge the risk that comes with it. She clarifies that each date is a risk, as the woman can be overpowered. However, the sentence “You have to accept the fact that part of the sizzle of sex comes from the danger of sex” is a little confusing. It seems unclear as to what she means? Do women intentionally take risks to make their sex life more interesting, or do men rape women because the thrill of danger turns them on?

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I agree with her when she says that it is a woman’s personal responsibility to be aware of the dangers of the world, and that, more often than not, it is women coming from secluded and sheltered families, who come out and demand freedom and equality, as they have been brought up to believe that the world is a very safe place. She equates a drunk girl going to a guy’s room believing nothing will go wrong to someone leaving his car keys on the hood of the car in New York City believing that the car won't get stolen. Yes, if the guy rapes her or if a thief steals the car, they commit a crime, but it was only the girl’s, or car owner’s stupidity that let them get away with it. I agree with the author that women need to be careful and should be fully aware of what people are capable of doing. Any illusions or blind faith in people’s intentions will only cause her harm.

Camille states that there is an attraction between sexes that we are not fully in control of

This I do not agree with. Does she imply that men cannot help raping women because they have no control on their hormones? She says that she herself has always been vigilant and careful, and tries to interpret the signals she receives from men. This is why she has never been raped, and if ever she is, that would imply that she misread the signals and made a mistake, but that would not mean that she would press charges. Her stance, in this paragraph seems to favor men and hold women guilty if they get raped, as they did not properly read the ‘signals’. This notion is further strengthened by the idea of not pressing charges and letting the man go scot-free after committing a heinous crime. There is no mention of women’s rights or rape help-lines or what a woman should do in such a scenario.

The entire article has a very ancient feel to it and it appears as if the author is incriminating women for dating and going out with men. On the other hand, it appears as if she believes that men, because they are men, will rape women and have their way with them and that they have every right to do so unless women can read their intentions and get away from them in time. If not, then it is the woman’s fault for being suitable bait for the hormonally controlled man and in such a case, she was asking for it. It appears as if the article has been written by an overprotective mother to scare her daughter into being a good girl so that “bad things” don't happen to her. 

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