In the United States, approximately one in five women experiences rape during college, and LGBTQ students experience sexual violence at even higher rates. An increasing number of interested parties, from activists and students to legislators and university administrators, are re-evaluating the role that universities and colleges play in the incidence of sexual violence on their campuses. To this end, the number of U.S. universities under investigation for mishandlingsexual assaults has recently grown to the highest count to date. Many more universities, guided by federal laws such as Title IX and the Clery Act, are working to better prevent and address various forms of assault on their campuses by implementing new policies, reporting procedures, andinvestigative processes. Now that such measures have been implemented for several years, however, the question arises of whether these institutional changes are actually combatting the issue of campus sexual assault or whether they might in practice be reproducing that violence in other forms. In Beyond the Rapist, Kate Lockwood Harris considers this question and how the relationships among organization, communication, and violence inform how we understand the ways in which universities talk about and respondto sexual violence. Drawing upon theoretical insights from feminist new materialism, Harris explores how complex physical and symbolic components of violence are embedded in organizations and applies this thinking to the policies and practices of a university known for its Title IX processes. In doing so, shesuggests that combatting the epidemic of sexual violence on college campus involves both recognizing that sexual violence is part of larger systems of injustice and refining our definition of violence to encompass far more than individual moments of physical injury.
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