Guest post by MADHU MEHRA
The public outrage in the wake of the Delhi gang rape has been as much a reaction to the brutality of the case, as it has been against the pervasiveness of sexual violence in our society. Instead of condemnation and action, rape cases frequently evoke public statements blaming the victims, and calls to reign in women’s freedom. That our social structures and mindsets remain patriarchal is well known. The question however is, to what extent does the law counter societal misogyny in the way it frames and responds to sexual violence? Do the criminal laws establish norms that uphold women’s bodily integrity and dignity in all situations, against all offenders without selectivity or discrimination?
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