Presumably, rape has existed as long as sexual intercourse has existed. Men are generally physically stronger than women, and have the power to dominate them sexually if motivated to do so. For men, fear of rape is not something they can easily relate to (unless they have been to prison). Women, however, are usually intimately aware of their sexual vulnerability. In some places such as South Africa, rape has become such a problem that 1.2 women per thousand are raped each year. Compare this to .3 women per thousand raped per year in the United States (which ranks 10th in the world). These alarming numbers have led some women to seek protection against rape.
Demand for rape protection has resulted in the invention of many anti-rape devices. What follows are some examples of these anti-rape devices.
One interesting thing to note is that these devices generally serve two purposes. The first is to stop the attacker. The second, is to inflict so much pain and/or mutilation that fear is incited into all men who might attempt rape.
1. Female Protective Device (1977)
Abstract: Female protective device to prevent rape, the device including an elongated slender shaft having a sharp end, a first annular enlargement fixed around the shaft adjacent to but spaced from the sharp end, and a second enlargement connected by a flexible joint to the other end of the shaft. The device is meant to be worn inside the vagina with the sharp end pointed outward. -Source
2. Harpoon Based Anti-Rape Device (1979)
Abstract: This anti-rape device is comprised of a tube that is inserted into the vagina. The tube contains a rod with a harpoon tip designed for puncturing and ensnaring the penis of a potential rapist. The housing of the device is meant to protect the vagina from blood or body fluids lost by the attacker. The harpoon tip was designed to be difficult and extremely painful to remove. The creator also envisioned a similar device with several harpoons instead of a single harpoon. -Source
3. Needle Based Anti-Rape Device w/Narcotic(1979)
Abstract: This anti-rape device consists of a hollow housing made to fit inside the vagina. The housing has an opening at one end. Inside, it contains a hypodermic syringe that contains a “rape-deterring” fluid. The hypodermic syringe is aligned so it is facing the opening of the housing. The needle is placed on an actuator that propels (via a spring) the needle into the penis of the would-be rapist. The actuator is only sprung by insertion of an erect penis into the housing of the device. The fluid injected into the penis can vary, but the patent holder recommends a fast acting safe narcotic such as scopolamine that will quickly render the rapist unconscious. -Source
4. Anti-Rape Device w/Acid (1985)
Abstract: This anti-rape devices is to be worn inside the vagina. It is comprised of a hollow housing with an interior coating of an adhesive. Positioned within the housing is an irritant contiaining pouch meant to rupture when penetrated by an erect penish. The penis is then become entrapped by the interrior adhesive, that can not be easily removed. The irritant will continue to cause suffering untill the device can be removed. The patent holder states that many different irritants can be used depending on the severity of damage one wishes to inflict. Formic Acid and Hydrocloric Acid are two irritants mentioned as possibilities. -Source
5. Anti-Rape Penis Trap (1994)
Abstract: This device is made of a flexible metal rim that contains pointed spears (teeth) at its entrance that point inward. These teeth move only inward and act as a trap for an inserted penis. The housing of the rest of the device is made from flexible rubber, similar in feel to a condom. The trap can not be easily removed. -Source
6. The T-1000 of Anti-Rape Devices (1998)
Abstract: Essentially, this device is a complete anti-rape solution. It’s a computerized cylindrical vaginal insert meant to minimize damage from sexual intercourse, to obtain a tissue sample of the rapist, and to deter/damage the penis of the rapist. Here’s a list of features. If you want more details, check here.
- Device fits inside vagina and protects it from damage.
- Device will catch any fluids released inside, and contain them from contact with the wearer.
- Device contains computerized pressure sensors that can tell when an object has been inserted.
- Device dispenses an “identification dye” onto the inserted object when sensors are activated.
- Device is equipped with a recording device that is activated by microcomputer when sensors are activated.
- Device dispenses surgical glue onto inserted object, causing the device to be attached to the penis of a potential attacker.
- A needle is positioned and activated inside the device so that upon penetration, the needle simultaneously takes a tissue sample, and injects an irritant into the inserted object.
7. Rape-aXe (2005)
Abstract: The Rape-aXe system consists of a latex sheath, which contains razor-sharp barbs. The device is worn in thevagina like a tampon. When the attacker attempts vaginal penetration the barbs attach themselves to the penis, causing great discomfort. The device must be surgically removed, which will result in the positive identification of the attacker and subsequent arrest. -Source