Towards a Cultural Definition of Rape: Dilemmas in Dealing with Rape Victims in Palestinian Society

Nadera Shalhoub-Kevorkian*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

1 Scopus citations


This chapter examines predominant attitudes toward women and rape in a specific setting and point of history: contemporary Palestinian society. It explains the impact of socio-cultural factors upon the social and psychological reaction of the client, and, in turn, of the helper. The relation between rape and a patriarchal, gender-based perception of women's status has long been a topic of controversy among researchers. Cross-national research has shown that cultural differences in terms of public misconceptions of rape and acceptance of rape myths significantly correlate with restrictive beliefs about the social roles and rights of women. In Arab culture, sexuality is considered a very private matter, closed to open discourse and inappropriate for the socialization of children. As part of the Arab world, Palestinian women have faced the same oppressive patriarchal forces mentioned above, affecting the social perception and definition of their role in society. The topic of rape and its effects is an intricate, multidimensional one.

Original languageAmerican English
Title of host publicationDeconstructing Sexuality in the Middle East
Subtitle of host publicationChallenges and Discourses
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages22
ISBN (Electronic)9781317153702
ISBN (Print)9780754672357
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Pınar İlkkaracan 2008.


Dive into the research topics of 'Towards a Cultural Definition of Rape: Dilemmas in Dealing with Rape Victims in Palestinian Society'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this