n South African Psychiatry Review - A socio-psychological perspective on the phenomenon of infant rapes in South Africa : review article

Volume 6, Issue 4
  • ISSN : 1811-7805



In the context of much social violence South Africa has recently witnessed an increase in the reported cases of rape of young children and even infants. In this article the author wishes to move away from an individual focus on the dynamics underlying the rapist but rather wants to present a socio-psychological perspective on this phenomenon. It will be argued that the rape of infants must firstly be understood within the context of rape as whole. Emphasis will also be given to specific social and political factors present in South African society which may place children at risk of abuse and sexual violence. The interpersonal relationships which may be typical of families of victims will also be explored. Finally intervention and management strategies for mental health professionals working with victims and their families will be suggested.

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