Marital Rape

Topics: Marriage, Rape, Sexual intercourse Pages: 15 (4439 words) Published: September 11, 2014

Project Report
Marital Rape

Submitted To: Ms. Archna Agrawal
Submitted by: Priyansh Sharma
Enrollment ID: A3211113141
Course: B.A. L.Lb
Section: B
Semester: III


I would like to thank our professor Ms. Archana Agrawal for providing us the opportunity to make a project on such an enlightening topic and for also providing me any kind of help whenever required by me. While researching on the topic “Marital Rape” I learnt a lot about the practical and social world in which we live. Being a law student it is quite important for me to develop that ability to look law with the purview of the practical and social conditions of our society. I came across many cases and problems and issues which are faced by the sufferers of this problem about which I was aware before too but got to learn more about them. This experience of mine will help me to develop that social and practical purview to look towards law which is required for any law student to achieve knowledge in my life. I would also like to thank Amity University Uttar Pradesh for providing us with such a curriculum which helps us in increasing our knowledge in all aspects of education.

Priyansh Sharma

Table of Contents

1. Introduction
2. Historical Context
3. Physical and Psychological Damage
4. In the context of Forced and Child Marriages
5. Legal Aspects
6. Prevalence
7. Sustaining Factors
8. Problems in prosecuting Spousal rape
9. Indian Context
10. Observations
11. Classification of Countries


Marital rape, also known as spousal rape and rape in marriage, is non-consensual sex in which the perpetrator is the victim's spouse. It is a form of partner rape, of domestic violence, and of sexual abuse. It can be equally, or even more, emotionally and physically damaging than rape by a stranger. Once widely condoned or ignored by law, spousal rape is now repudiated by international conventions and increasingly criminalized. Still, in many countries, spousal rape either remains legal, or is illegal but widely tolerated, with the laws against it being rarely enforced. Traditional views on marriage which dictate that a woman must be (sexually) submissive to her husband continue to be common in many parts of the world. Traditional understanding and views of marriage, rape, sexuality, gender roles and self determination have started to be challenged in most Western countries during the 1960s and 1970s, which has led to the subsequent criminalization of marital rape during the following decades. With a few notable exceptions, it was during the past 30 years when most laws against marital rape have been enacted. Several countries in Eastern Europe and Scandinavia made spousal rape illegal before 1970, but other countries in Western Europe and the English-speaking Western World outlawed it much later, mostly in the 1980s and 1990s. Most developing countries outlawed it in the 1990s and 2000s. In many countries it remains unclear whether marital rape is covered by ordinary rape laws. The original justifications for the legality of marital rape were simply the result of the way marriage was understood historically in most cultures (legally requiring a wife to obey her husband, allowing a husband to punish his wife if she did not perform her duties etc.). However, long after these views were no longer considered valid in Western countries, the lawmakers have continued to be reluctant to intervene on the issue of rape in marriage, based on the idea that it was undesirable to interfere with the 'privacy' of a married couple and that marriage as an institution had to be 'protected' from outside intervention.

Historical context

The concept of a marital exemption, that is, a legal framework, or, perhaps even more importantly, a social view, stating that a husband cannot be charged with the rape of his wife, must be understood in the historical context...

Bibliography: Primary sources
Easteal, P. Voices of the Survivors, Spinifex Press, North Melbourne, 1994.
Finkelhor, D. and Yllo, K., License to Rape, The Free Press, New York 1985.
Russell, Diana E.H., Rape in Marriage Macmillan Publishing Company, USA, 1990.
The American Bar Association, Facts about Women and the Law
Other Sources
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