The Continuum of Sexual Violence in Occupied Germany, 1945-49

TitleThe Continuum of Sexual Violence in Occupied Germany, 1945-49
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1996
AuthorsTeo, Hsu-Ming
JournalWomen's History Review
Date Published06/1996

This article explores male sexual violence against German women in Occupied Germany, 1945-49. Drawing upon the feminist sociological concept of a ‘continuum of sexual violence’, it argues that German women's experience of rape and prostitution must be seen in relation to other aspects of male sexual violence such as murder, verbal, visual and physical abuse, and sexual harassment. It seeks a historical explanation for this violence through an examination of twentieth-century Western hegemonic masculinity, arguing that National Socialist or Fascist masculinity is merely the extreme end of a right-wing, militaristic masculinity constructed around violence against and domination over women and perceived ‘others' in society. Through the course of World War II this strand of masculinity became dominant and facilitated the continuation of ‘war’ against German women throughout the period of Occupation.

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