Rape pornography

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Rape pornography is a genre of pornographic scene involving the depiction of rape. This genre is not unique to adult film and videos as simulated scenes of rape, sometimes just as disturbing yet without the graphic imagery, and other forms of sexual violence have appeared in mainstream cinema almost since its advent.[1] For example, in the 1988 film The Accused actress Jodie Foster received a Best Actress Academy Award for her portrayal of rape victim Sarah Tobias.[2]

There is some debate whether this form of pornography encourages people to commit rape. The pairing of sex with violence distinguishes the issue of rape pornography from that of pornography in general. Studies of the issue produce conflicting results.[3]

Legality[edit]

United Kingdom[edit]

The possession of rape pornography is illegal in Scotland but not in England and Wales.

In Scotland, the Criminal Justice and Licensing (Scotland) Act 2010 criminalised possession of "extreme" pornography. This includes depictions of rape, and "other non-consensual penetrative sexual activity, whether violent or otherwise", including those involving consenting adults and images that were faked.[4] The maximum penalty is an unlimited fine and 3 years imprisonment.[5] The law is not often used, and it resulted in only one prosecution during the first four years that it was in force.[6]

In England and Wales, Section 63 of the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008 criminalised possession of "extreme pornography" but it did not explicitly specify depictions of rape.[7] It was thought that the sale of rape pornography might already be illegal in England and Wales as a result of the Obscene Publications Act 1959, but the ruling in R v Peacock in January 2012 demonstrated that this was not the case. In 2013 the UK Prime Minister David Cameron announced plans for pornography which depicts rape (including simulations involving consenting adults) to become illegal in England and Wales bringing the law into line with that of Scotland.[8] The proposal was incorporated into Section 16 of the Criminal Justice and Courts Bill 2013–14 which amends the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008. In January 2014 sexual freedom campaign groups criticised the section as being poorly-defined and liable to criminalise a wider range of material than originally suggested.[9] However, in April 2014 the BBFC's presentation to parliament suggested that the proposed legislation would not cover "clearly fictional depictions of rape and other sexual violence in which participants are clearly actors, acting to a script".[10]

Germany[edit]

In Germany, the distribution of pornography featuring real or faked rape is illegal.[11]

United States[edit]

There are few practical legal restrictions on rape pornography in the United States. Law enforcement agencies concentrate on examples where they believe a crime has been committed in the production. "Fantasy" rape pornography depicting rape simulations involving consenting adults are not a priority for the police.[12]

Internet[edit]

Internet policing has been made increasingly difficult by rape pornography websites operating anonymously, flouting ICANN regulations and providing false information for the Whois database.[12]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Simpson, Clare. "10 Controversial Films With Scenes Of Explicit Sexual Violence". WhatCulture.com. Retrieved 30 April 2014. 
  2. ^ Simpson, Clare. "10 Controversial Films With Scenes Of Explicit Sexual Violence". WhatCulture.com. Retrieved 30 April 2014. 
  3. ^ "Pornography, Rape and Sex Crimes in Japan". Pacific Center for Sex and Society. University of Hawaii. 1999. 
  4. ^ "Revitalising Justice – Proposals To Modernise And Improve The Criminal Justice System". Scotland.gov.uk. 2008-09-24. Retrieved 2012-02-20. 
  5. ^ "Information on the new offence of Possession of Extreme Pornographic Images". The Scottish Government. 1 Mar 2011. Retrieved 18 December 2013. 
  6. ^ Dan Bunting (22 April 2014). "Criminal Justice and Courts Bill – new criminal offences". Halsbury's Law Exchange. 
  7. ^ "Crackdown on violent porn". The Scotsman (Johnston Publishing). 2006-08-31. 
  8. ^ "Online pornography to be blocked by default, PM announces". BBC News. 22 July 2013. Retrieved 18 December 2013. 
  9. ^ Jerry Barnett (20 February 2014). "Letter to MPs on Criminalising "Rape Porn"". Sex & Censorship. 
  10. ^ Ben Yates (4 April 2014). "UK Censors Approve Unrealistic Rape Porn". Sex and Censorship. 
  11. ^ "German Criminal Code". Gesetze-im-internet.de. Retrieved 2012-02-20. 
  12. ^ a b Craig Timberg (6 December 2013). "How violent porn site operators disappear behind Internet privacy protections". The Washington Post. Retrieved 18 December 2013.