Reporting on sexual assault

Media backgrounder – February 2012

Academic references

These documents have been drawn upon in creating this Media Backgrounder.

  • Access Economics. (2004). The cost of domestic violence to the Australian economy: Part 1 & 2.Canberra: FaHCSIA, Office for the Status of Women.
  • Australian Bureau of Statistics. (2006). 2005 Personal Safety Survey Australia. Canberra: Australian Bureau of Statistics.
  • Bavelas, J., & Coates, L. (2001). Is it sex or assault? Erotic versus violent language in sexual assault trial judgments. Journal of Social Distress and the Homeless, 10(1), 29-40.
  • Bohner, G. (2001). Writing about rape: Use of the passive voice and other distancing text features as an expression of perceived responsibility of the victim. British Journal of Social Psychology, 40, 515-529.
  • Clark, H., & Quadara, A. (2010). Insights into sexual assault perpetration: Giving voice to victim/survivors' knowledge (Research Report No.18). Melbourne: Australian Institute of Family Studies.
  • Coates, L., & Wade, A. (2007). Language and violence: Analysis of four discursive operations. Journal of Family Violence, 22, 511-522.
  • Edwards, R. (2003). Information paper: Sexual assault information development framework (Cat no. 4518.0). Canberra: Australian Bureau of Statistics.
  • Frazer, A. K., & Miller, M. D. (2009). Double standards in sentence structure: Passive voice in narratives describing domestic violence. Journal of Language and Social Psychology, 28(1), 62-71.
  • Goddard, C., & Liddell, M. (1993). Child abuse and the media: Victoria introduces mandatory reporting after an intensive media campaign. Children Australia, 18(3), 23-27.
  • Heath, M. (2005). The law and sexual offences against adults in Australia (Issues No. 4). Melbourne: Australian Institute of Family Studies.
  • Henley, M. N., Miller, M., & Beazley, J. A. (1995). Syntax, semantics, and sexual violence: Agency and the passive voice. Journal of Language and Social Psychology, 14(1-2) 60-84.
  • Ho, S. S., & McLeod, D. M. (2008). Social-psychological influences on opinion expression in face-to-face and computer-mediated communication. Communication Research, 35(2), 190-207.
  • King, R. (2009). Justice or judgement? Germany: Lambert Publishing.
  • Klettke, B., & Simonis, S. (2011). Attitudes regarding the perceived culpability of adolescent and adult victims of sexual assault. ACSSA Aware, 26, 7-12.
  • Lee, E. J., & Jang, Y. J. (2010). What do others' reactions to news on Internet portal sites tell us? Effects of presentation format and readers' need for cognition on reality perception. Communication Research, 37(6), 825-846.
  • Lievore, D. (2003). Non-reporting and hidden recording of sexual assault: An international literature review. Canberra:Australian Institute of Criminology.
  • Livingwell. (2010a). Unhelpful myths about the sexual assault and rape of men. Retrieved from <>.
  • Livingwell. (2010b). Statistics. Retrieved from <>
  • Marhia, N. (2008). Just representation? Press reporting and the reality of rape. The Lilith Project.
  • Melican, D. B., & Dixon, T. L. (2008). News on the net: Credibility, selective exposure, and racial prejudice. Communication Research, 35(2), 151-168.
  • Morrison, Z. (2007). "Feeling heavy": Vicarious trauma and other issues facing those who work in the sexual assault field (ACSSA Wrap No.4). Melbourne: Australian Institute of Family Studies.
  • Morrison, Z., Quadara, A., & Boyd, C. (2007). "Ripple effects" of sexual assault (ACSSA Issues No.7). Melbourne: Australian Institute for Family Studies.
  • Penelope, J. (1990). Speaking freely: Unlearning the lies of the fathers' tongues. New York: Pergamon Press.
  • Powell, A. (2011). Review of bystander approaches in support of preventing violence against women: Preventing violence against women by increasing participation in respectful relationships. Melbourne: Vic Health.
  • Sleath, E., & Bull, R. (2010). Male rape victim and perpetrator blaming. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 25(6), 969-988.
  • VicHealth. (2006). Two steps forward, one step back: Community attitudes to violence against women. Progress and challenges in creating safe and healthy environments for Victorian women. A summary of findings. Melbourne: VicHealth.
  • VicHealth. (2007). Preventing violence before it occurs: A framework and background paper to guide the primary prevention of violence against women in Victoria. Melbourne: VicHealth.
  • VicHealth. (2009). National Survey on Community Attitudes to Violence Against Women 2009. Changing cultures, changing attitudes - preventing violence against women: A summary of findings. Melbourne: VicHealth.