Lancaster University Law School seeks participants to talk about ordeal of ‘hidden’ sexual crime

28 June 2018 16:17
Man writing in a book
Man writing in a book

The extent of men being sexually violated by women comes under scrutiny in a research project, the first of its kind in the UK, which now seeks participants prepared to speak about their experiences.

The project, led by Dr Siobhan Weare, of Lancaster University Law School, has just received funding from the British Academy and Leverhulme Trust which enables her to extend her research.

Specifically, Dr Weare, who would now like to undertake a series of interviews, is researching cases of men who are forced by women to have sex with them against their will - also known as ‘forced-to- penetrate’ cases.

She explains: “The term ‘forced-to-penetrate’ has been coined for these cases because, while they involve non-consensual sex, they do not fall under the offence of rape. The offence of rape can only be committed by men due to the requirement of penile penetration of the victim. In ‘forced-to-penetrate’ cases, the offender is the one being penetrated by a non-consenting victim.”

Examples of such circumstances might include:

•   A man waking up to find a woman having sex with him without his consent.

•   A man being forced to have non-consensual sex with a woman as a result of her blackmailing him.

•   A man having non-consensual sex with a woman after being physically, emotionally, or financially threatened.

As part of this study, Dr Weare is inviting men who have experienced non-consensual sex with a woman to be interviewed by a member of her research team to help them to understand more about the experiences.

The study builds on research already undertaken in this area by Dr Weare, who in 2016 conducted an online survey on forced-to-penetrate cases which was completed by more than 150 men.

By building upon her research and interviewing men, Dr Weare hopes that the findings will enable greater understanding about this ‘hidden crime’, as well as helping to develop practice and policy in this area, and in relation to the broader issue of men who experience sexual violence.

For more information about the study and to sign up for an interview, please go to:

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