xiv Preface to why sexual assault is so rampant, and we struggle to create and implement concrete solutions. However, there are reasons for hope. Activists have been working for decades to dismantle rape culture, support victims, and attempt to hold perpetrators accountable. Sexual assault was once believed to be a private matter but is now largely understood to be a public concern. The MeToo Movement revealed the prevalence of sexual assault and harassment and exposed perpetrators. Student activists have used federal legislation to demand that their universities handle sexual assault appropriately. Additionally, in response to demands for change, the U.S. military has made badly needed reforms to its sexual assault policies. In other words, while the rates of sexual violence remain high, we are not only demand- ing change, we are expecting it. One book alone cannot cover the full scope of the problem of sexual violence. Unfortunately, that would take volumes. The intent of this book is to gather pertinent information into a concise format that presents relevant history and con- temporary issues pertaining to rape and sexual assault in the United States. Also included are statistics, an overview of related controversies, and discussions of pertinent legislation, high-profile cases, and notable activists. Additionally, these pages contain the voices of advocates and survivors, a list of important resources, and a timeline of key dates. I recom- mend that readers who are interested in learning more seek out additional resources out of necessity, the study of sexual assault is a growing field. If you have experienced sexual assault: If you have experienced sexual assault or rape, you have a variety of options. If you are in immediate danger or wish to report the assault to the police, call 911. Additionally, most towns and cities have local rape crisis centers that typically have hotlines that survivors can call or text. Rape crisis centers often have trained therapists and advocates that can assist a survivor by providing resources and helping them to navigate chosen
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