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Ginekologia i Poloznictwo
ISSN 1896-3315 e-ISSN 1898-0759

Rape ? a psychosocial background and the legaldefinition of the offence



Rape is the experience of one of the most painful and traumatic acts that a person can do toanother. This phenomenon crosses all boundaries: cultural, geographical and temporal. Fur-thermore, the rape shows exceptionally wide margin of undisclosed numbers of events in relationto those reported. This text addresses two aspects of the rape- psychological and legal. Thefirst of aspect is discussed as the etiology of violence. Views on rape are presented here inthe main paradygms of psychology. The reader will find the underlying conditions of thephenomenon vied in psychodynamic, the behavioral and cognitive approach. In the lattermentioned approach of psychology the most common myths about the roles of men and womenhave been separated, which reinforces distortions that rationalizes this terrible deed in the mindsof the perpetrators. The text also addresses the issue of rape typology and distinguishes motivesof their existence. The most common demographic characteristics of perpetrators and victimscan also be found in this article. The legal context includes specificity of the rape crime inthe Polish criminal law. This is the most common form of sexual crime subject to be puni-shed. The main features of this crime are discussed to distinguish them from other crimes againstsexual freedom and morality, placed in the same section of the Criminal Code. Distinctionsthat were made diffrenciate rape as a crime in the strict sense from the crime of bringinga person to submit to another sexual act. The crime of rape was also compared with a crimeusing disability and abuse of helpless dependence that have been placed by the legislature inthe following articles of the Criminal Code. In addition, the specific nature of the offense ofrape was taken under account. It depends on the application to its nature. Although this isa public offense Complaint, its unique shape makes the victim not to be allowed to withdrawnthe case once submitted application. In addition, as a crime of this nature, it gives the victimthe right to request court to exclude a public hearing in whole or in part.