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It's hard to pin down the numbers on sexual assaults on college campuses. Women often don't report attacks to authorities, and studies vary on how they define an assault. Figures range from rates as low as 3% to as much as 20%. But even using the most conservative numbers, that means nearly 2,500 women attending college in Utah will experience rape or attempted rape this year. RadioWest hosted a three-part series on the complicated issues surrounding sexual assault. We talked about the culture that may be contributing to the problem, about prevention and how Universities respond when the unimaginable happens.

Asking For It

An ad from Bloomingdale's 2015 holiday catalogue. The department store has since apologized, calling it "inappropriate."

Monday, Doug’s guest is feminist author Kate Harding, whose most recent book is a blunt examination of sexual assault as a social phenomenon. Harding says we talk about it in the passive voice: “Local woman raped.” But somebody is to blame, and Harding argues our culture is diverting scrutiny from the criminals and asking the wrong questions of victims. She joins us to talk about the ways stereotypes in entertainment, news media, politics, and daily life have created our rape culture.

Information and education for teens and young adults about sexuality is available on the Web site Scarleteen.com.

Visit the Utah Rape Recovery Center's Web site for more resources.

Kate Harding is the coauthor of Lessons from the Fat-o-Sphere [Indiebound|Amazon] and a columnist for Dame Magazine. Her new book is called Asking For It: The Alarming Rise of Rape Culture and What We Can Do About It. [Indiebound|Amazon]

Doug Fabrizio has been reporting for KUER News since 1987, and became News Director in 1993. In 2001, he became host and executive producer of KUER's RadioWest, a one hour conversation/call-in show on KUER 90.1 in Salt Lake City. He has gained a reputation for his thoughtful style. He has interviewed everyone from Isabel Allende to the Dalai Lama, and from Madeleine Albright to Desmond Tutu. His interview skills landed him a spot as a guest host of the national NPR program, "Talk of the Nation." He has won numerous awards for his reporting and for his work with RadioWest and KUED's Utah NOW from such organizations as the Society of Professional Journalists, the Utah Broadcasters Association, the Public Radio News Directors Association and the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.
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