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The Encyclopedia of Murder and Violent Crime defines date rape as rape occurring during a pre-arranged social engagement. In his 1992 book Sex and Reason American jurist, legal theorist and economist Richard Posner characterized the increased attention being given to date rape as a sign of the changing status of women in American society, pointing out that dating itself is a feature of modern societies and that date rape can be expected to be frequent in a society in which sexual morals vary between the permissive and the repressive. An early 1987 study found that one in four American women will be the victim of a rape or attempted rape in her lifetime, and 84% of those will know their attacker.However, only 27% of American women whose sexual assault met the legal definition of rape think of themselves as rape victims, and only about 5% report their rape.
It is controversial, however, with some people believing the problem is overstated and that many date rape victims are actually willing, consenting participants, and others believing that date rape is seriously under-reported and almost all women who claim date rape were actually raped.
Also, a concern transmitted by the people surrounding the victim can lead into a confession of the assault, or within a situation in which alcohol is involved and that leads to recount the experience.
Most of the research on sexual assault victims has been carried out with White-middle class population.
Historically, in much of the world, rape was seen as a crime of theft of a man's property (usually either a husband or father).
In this case, property damage meant that the crime was not legally recognized as damaging to the victim, but instead to her father or husband's property. states had criminalized the concept of marital rape by 1993.