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Från våld till täkt - Den historiska utvecklingen av våldtäktsbegreppet i Sverige från 1734 till 2013

Dohm-Hansen, Kim LU (2013) JURM02 20132
Department of Law
Abstract (Swedish)
Syftet med uppsatsen är att utreda hur definitionen av våldtäkt utvecklats från 1734 till och med 2013. Detta skall förklaras utifrån tre parametrar: personkrets, våld/hot och sexuell handling. Uppsatsens skall försöka svara på hur dessa faktorer har förändrats och varför.

Kravet på våld har sänkts genomgående under historien och är nu betydligt lägre än på 1700-talet. Detta beror till stor del på en ökad förståelse av hur offret reagerar under ett sexuellt övergrepp. Tidigare antogs och förväntades ett offer göra allt motstånd som hon möjligen kunde uppbåda. För att kunna övervinna detta var gärningsmannen följaktligen tvungen att använda motsvarande våld. Idag ser bilden av offrets agerande helt annorlunda ut. Motstånd är inte längre... (More)
Syftet med uppsatsen är att utreda hur definitionen av våldtäkt utvecklats från 1734 till och med 2013. Detta skall förklaras utifrån tre parametrar: personkrets, våld/hot och sexuell handling. Uppsatsens skall försöka svara på hur dessa faktorer har förändrats och varför.

Kravet på våld har sänkts genomgående under historien och är nu betydligt lägre än på 1700-talet. Detta beror till stor del på en ökad förståelse av hur offret reagerar under ett sexuellt övergrepp. Tidigare antogs och förväntades ett offer göra allt motstånd som hon möjligen kunde uppbåda. För att kunna övervinna detta var gärningsmannen följaktligen tvungen att använda motsvarande våld. Idag ser bilden av offrets agerande helt annorlunda ut. Motstånd är inte längre den enda rimliga eller förväntade reaktionen. Lagstiftaren inser istället att rädslan hos offret kan göra att han eller hon faktiskt inte vågar eller kan göra motstånd och därför förhåller sig passiv. Följaktligen har lagstiftaren också sänkt kravet på gärningsmannens våldsanvändning.

Personkretsen har utvidgats konstant, med undantag för införandet av strafflagen, då enbart psykiskt friska, vuxna kvinnor kunde vara offer. Barn och psykiskt sjuka uteslöts då ur paragrafens tillämpningsområde. Offerkategorin har i princip gått från att enbart omfatta kvinnor till att omfatta alla människor i samhället. Gärningsmannakategorin har genomgått motsvarande utvidgning och omfattar nu alla och inte bara män. Utvidgningarna beror främst på att brottets skyddsintresse förändrats. Våldtäkt var från början till stor del ett brott mot äran. Den kvinnliga äran var kopplad till sexualitet och en kvinna kunde därför kränkas genom en påtvingad sexuell handling. Motsvarande gällde inte för män, vilka följaktligen uteslöts ur offerkategorin. Dessa inkluderades först senare då våldtäkt istället sågs som en kränkning av offrets sexuella frihet.

Tillämpningsområdet har också utvidgats för de sexuella handlingar som omfattas av brottet. Detta har dock inte skett i lika stor utsträckning som för de andra kategorierna. Enligt 1734 års lag krävdes vaginal penetration och utlösning för att våldtäkt skulle komma ifråga. Antalet handlingar utökades successivt under strafflagen för att sedan återigen begränsas till vaginalt samlag – dock utan krav på penetration – vid brottsbalkens införande. Sedan dess har antalet handlingar utökats igen och omfattar bland annat oralsex, analsex och att föra upp någonting i en kvinnas underliv. Enligt strafflagen ingick också att onanera åt en man, vilket idag inte rubriceras som våldtäkt. Precis som vid personkretsen så beror denna utveckling till stor del på brottets skyddsintresse. Under 1700-talet skyddade kriminaliseringen familjen och avsåg därför den handling som faktiskt riskerade att leda till graviditet. När fokus sedan lades på offrets sexuella frihet och integritet kom brottet att omfatta fler handlingar. (Less)
Abstract
The purpose of this essay is to study the evolution of the legal definition of rape from 1734 to 2013. This shall be examined using three factors: possible assailants and victims, the need for violence/threat, and the sexual act itself. The essay aims to explain how these parameters have changed and why.

The prerequisite of violence has been continually lowered throughout history and is now far below the level required in the 18th century. This is largely due to an increased understanding of how a victims react to sexual assault. Previously, the victim was presumed, and expected, to resist as much as he or she possibly could. In order to combat this, the assailant had to use an equivalent amount of violence. Today, the idea of how a... (More)
The purpose of this essay is to study the evolution of the legal definition of rape from 1734 to 2013. This shall be examined using three factors: possible assailants and victims, the need for violence/threat, and the sexual act itself. The essay aims to explain how these parameters have changed and why.

The prerequisite of violence has been continually lowered throughout history and is now far below the level required in the 18th century. This is largely due to an increased understanding of how a victims react to sexual assault. Previously, the victim was presumed, and expected, to resist as much as he or she possibly could. In order to combat this, the assailant had to use an equivalent amount of violence. Today, the idea of how a victim responds is completely different. Resistance is no longer the only reasonable or expected reaction. Instead, the legislator realizes that the victim’s fear may actually make him or her incapable of resisting, causing the victim to remain passive. Consequently, the legislator has lowered the prerequisite of the assailant’s use of violence.

The number of people capable of committing or being victimized by the crime has continuously grown, with the exception of the penal code of 1864, in which only mentally sane adult women could be victims. Children, the mentally challenged and the mentally ill were excluded from the scope of the article. Today, the category of possible victims encompasses the entire population, whereas previously only women could be victimized. The same development can be seen with assailants. According to the current law anyone can commit rape and not only men, which was originally the case. These changes have been made depending on what or who the legislation has aimed to protect. In 18th century, a woman’s honour was linked to her sexuality. This was however not the case for men. Since rape was considered a violation of the victim’s honour, men could not be victimized. Later on, the purpose of criminalizing rape was to protect an individual’s sexual freedom. Since such freedom was not exclusive to women, men were added to the list of possible victims.

The sexual scope of the article has also grown. This has not, however, happened to the same extent as seen in the other categories. According to the law of 1734, the sexual act of rape was vaginal intercourse including penetration and male ejaculation. The number of sexual acts was gradually increased under the penal code of 1864 and then once again limited to vaginal intercourse – regardless of whether any penetration had occurred - when the current penal code was imposed. Since then, the number of sexual acts has increased once again and now includes oral sex, anal sex and the insertion of any object into a woman’s vagina. Under the penal code of 1864 the act of masturbating for a man could constitute rape. This is not the case today. As with possible assailants and victims, the increase seen in the number of sexual acts is largely connected to what the criminalization of rape has aimed to protect. During the 18th century the protected party was really the victim’s family. Therefore, rape was sexually limited to an act that could result in pregnancy. Later on, when the legislator started focusing on the sexual freedom and integrity of the victim, more and more sexual acts were included. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
Dohm-Hansen, Kim LU
supervisor
organization
alternative title
From violence to sex
course
JURM02 20132
year
type
H3 - Professional qualifications (4 Years - )
subject
keywords
Straffrätt, rättshistoria
language
Swedish
id
4230770
date added to LUP
2014-01-24 10:58:35
date last changed
2014-01-24 10:58:35
@misc{4230770,
  abstract     = {The purpose of this essay is to study the evolution of the legal definition of rape from 1734 to 2013. This shall be examined using three factors: possible assailants and victims, the need for violence/threat, and the sexual act itself. The essay aims to explain how these parameters have changed and why.

The prerequisite of violence has been continually lowered throughout history and is now far below the level required in the 18th century. This is largely due to an increased understanding of how a victims react to sexual assault. Previously, the victim was presumed, and expected, to resist as much as he or she possibly could. In order to combat this, the assailant had to use an equivalent amount of violence. Today, the idea of how a victim responds is completely different. Resistance is no longer the only reasonable or expected reaction. Instead, the legislator realizes that the victim’s fear may actually make him or her incapable of resisting, causing the victim to remain passive. Consequently, the legislator has lowered the prerequisite of the assailant’s use of violence.

The number of people capable of committing or being victimized by the crime has continuously grown, with the exception of the penal code of 1864, in which only mentally sane adult women could be victims. Children, the mentally challenged and the mentally ill were excluded from the scope of the article. Today, the category of possible victims encompasses the entire population, whereas previously only women could be victimized. The same development can be seen with assailants. According to the current law anyone can commit rape and not only men, which was originally the case. These changes have been made depending on what or who the legislation has aimed to protect. In 18th century, a woman’s honour was linked to her sexuality. This was however not the case for men. Since rape was considered a violation of the victim’s honour, men could not be victimized. Later on, the purpose of criminalizing rape was to protect an individual’s sexual freedom. Since such freedom was not exclusive to women, men were added to the list of possible victims. 

The sexual scope of the article has also grown. This has not, however, happened to the same extent as seen in the other categories. According to the law of 1734, the sexual act of rape was vaginal intercourse including penetration and male ejaculation. The number of sexual acts was gradually increased under the penal code of 1864 and then once again limited to vaginal intercourse – regardless of whether any penetration had occurred - when the current penal code was imposed. Since then, the number of sexual acts has increased once again and now includes oral sex, anal sex and the insertion of any object into a woman’s vagina. Under the penal code of 1864 the act of masturbating for a man could constitute rape. This is not the case today. As with possible assailants and victims, the increase seen in the number of sexual acts is largely connected to what the criminalization of rape has aimed to protect. During the 18th century the protected party was really the victim’s family. Therefore, rape was sexually limited to an act that could result in pregnancy. Later on, when the legislator started focusing on the sexual freedom and integrity of the victim, more and more sexual acts were included.},
  author       = {Dohm-Hansen, Kim},
  keyword      = {Straffrätt,rättshistoria},
  language     = {swe},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Från våld till täkt - Den historiska utvecklingen av våldtäktsbegreppet i Sverige från 1734 till 2013},
  year         = {2013},
}