Hookup culture is often associated with aggression, making it difficult for people to distinguish sexual assault from normal connections. This is a problem that has frequently arisen in cases of sexual assault on campus. A recent study systematically evaluated the influence of the support of the culture of sexual relations on the acceptance of the myths of female rape. The results showed that beliefs about sexual relationships and the achievement of status were the greatest predictors of the acceptance of the myth of male rape and the acceptance of the myth of female rape.
Gender differences were also found, with beliefs about status serving as an aggravating factor for the acceptance of the myth of female rape, while beliefs about sexual freedom served as a mitigating factor only for women. The American culture, from conventional pornography to movies and television shows, tells us that hate and lust are often intertwined. This can make it difficult to talk about environmental factors that can influence rape, such as alcohol or the culture of sexual relationships, while at the same time emphasizing that survivors are not at fault and that the crime itself is never excusable. Consent plays an important role in this situation; many survivors struggle to accuse their rapists in such a way if they consented to one or even most of the sexual intercourse, but not all of the physical acts that occurred.
Understanding the culture of sexual relations and questioning what our generation's profoundly complicated and perhaps delusional relationship with sex might be will not fully resolve rape on campus. It is important to recognize that hookup culture can be a contributing factor to sexual assault, and that it is essential to have open conversations about this issue in order to create a safe environment for everyone. We must also remember that consent is key in any kind of sexual encounter, and that any form of non-consensual sex is unacceptable.