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Review: Missoula

March 1, 2016

Missoula

In Missoula: Rape and the Justice System in a College Town, Jon Krakauer examines rape and Americans’ attitude towards it.  His focus is on one small city – Missoula, Montana – that’s the home of successful college football team and his research is meticulous. Make no mistake, though, rape is a problem throughout the country.

Rape, it turns out, occurs with appalling frequency throughout the United States.

Most people think of a rapist as someone wearing a ski mask who jumps from behind the bushes to attack his victim but most rapes are committed by an acquaintance or even friend of the victim. Quite often, the victim’s testimony is discounted or doubted so many rape cases are not investigated all that thoroughly and therefore not prosecuted, leaving victims who are brave enough to report the rape in the first place devastated.  We don’t treat the victims of any other crime as poorly as we do rape victims.

I found Missoula both fascinating and appalling.  Krakauer shares details of actual rape cases and  my heart ached because of all these young women had to go through in an attempt to get justice.  I was angered at times and came to realize we need to have a conversation about rape in this country, especially on college campuses.

I listened to the audio version of Missoula which is narrated by Mozhan Marno and Scott Brick with Marno doing the bulk of the work.  The audio of this thought provoking book is extremely well done and I do recommend it.

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27 Comments leave one →
  1. Diane permalink
    March 1, 2016 7:44 am

    Love Scott Brick as a narrator. I hadn’t thought about reading/listening to this one until now. Thanks Kathy

  2. Patty permalink
    March 1, 2016 7:47 am

    This sounds intense and sad.

  3. March 1, 2016 7:55 am

    I love Krakauer – I think he’s a really good writer.

  4. March 1, 2016 8:37 am

    I’m planning to listen to this one soon… just know it’s going to infuriate me.

  5. March 1, 2016 9:37 am

    I think I read Into Thin Air (not 100% sure). But I know I haven’t read any of the others. It sounds like this one is worthwhile.

  6. March 1, 2016 9:49 am

    Wow! I can only imagine how intense this read must be. I’ve had it on my radar and know that its something that I will be reading sooner rather than later. I agree with you that rape is a topic that must be brought into discussion, especially on college campuses. Great post!

  7. March 1, 2016 10:34 am

    You handled this subject well, Kathy. This does sound intense.

  8. March 1, 2016 10:52 am

    It’s SCARY! My brother is a sophomore in college and participates in fraternity life and with everything that goes on in the news, I’m constantly wondering what he’s exposed to with the drinking and partying and… It definitely needs to be talked about…a lot.

    I really like Krakauer and will likely add this to my list…eventually.

  9. March 1, 2016 12:08 pm

    My granddaughter will start college after she graduates, so this subject scares me.

  10. March 1, 2016 12:26 pm

    I have read Jon Krakauer in the past and really liked him. I am sure this book would be really interesting to check out!

  11. March 1, 2016 12:27 pm

    Fascinating and appalling is a good description! Pretty much how I felt. And I heard the audio is great

  12. March 1, 2016 12:56 pm

    I was drawn in by the title, because I spent part of one summer in the 1950s just outside Missoula, visiting friends. And it was such a “white bread” community, that I can see how rape would flourish there. Nobody wants to believe it is possible.

    Thanks for sharing.

  13. March 1, 2016 1:01 pm

    I haven’t heard of this one, but it sounds like an interesting and important read.

  14. March 1, 2016 1:36 pm

    Yes, this one was so hard to listen to. So many problems with the way rape cases are handled (everywhere, not just the US). A conversation is certainly overdue.

  15. March 1, 2016 2:48 pm

    India needs this book.

  16. March 1, 2016 3:05 pm

    This must be a very tough read!

  17. March 1, 2016 4:26 pm

    Oh I do not know

  18. Literary Feline permalink
    March 1, 2016 7:24 pm

    I am looking forward to reading this one. It’s such an important and necessary topic for us to be discussing and giving attention to.

  19. March 2, 2016 7:41 am

    I am reading this one right now as part of the #NFBookclub read-along hosted by Katie over at Doing Dewey. We just got started, so if anyone is interested in joining us, jump in!

  20. March 2, 2016 12:50 pm

    I read this e-book earlier this year but didn’t do a formal review. Some of my thoughts now, which are in agreement with yours.

    It was unbelievable as to which side was supported in the incredible amount of date rapes on the campus in the time frame the book discussed– intoxicated male athletes vs. intoxicated young women, (usually first time meeting the men & making poor decisions, or just other partygoers where everyone was drunk, high, etc). Overwhelmingly, the college administration, fraternities, other students, parents, townspeople, local newspapers supported the young men (because they were like *gods* in that town which glorified their sports teams!). The few folks who stood up to the others were taken down with smear campaigns.

    I just had to shake my head reading this. Couldn’t believe that in the last few years we haven’t advanced, as much as we’d like to think we have, in women’s rights to say no and mean no, or to not be afraid of assault/gang rapes when so mentally out of it they couldn’t possibly give consent. I was hoping for more of a “happy ending” but nope, there isn’t one…yet.

  21. March 2, 2016 5:54 pm

    I agree that there needs to be a big conversation about this issue. Unfortunately, it seems to be primarily among a small group of women. Hopefully, books like this will help.

  22. Beth F permalink
    March 3, 2016 6:18 am

    This is on my list — I really need to get to it. I worry all the time about my college-aged niece.

  23. March 4, 2016 7:28 pm

    I recently read Krakauer’s Where Men Win Glory, the audio also narrated by Scott Brick, and it was absolutely fantastic and SO fascinating.

  24. March 6, 2016 9:22 pm

    I didn’t realize he’d written a book about rape, what an interesting departure!

  25. The Cue Card permalink
    March 6, 2016 10:44 pm

    I havent read this one but I did see that documentary about rape on campuses called The Hunting Ground which is disturbing. Sort of blew me away

  26. bookingmama permalink
    March 7, 2016 7:45 am

    I am so glad you reviewed this one. I have been interested in this book and didn’t know if I’d “enjoy” it.

  27. March 10, 2016 7:27 am

    I don’t know if I could handle reading this one, but I completely agree that we need to have a serious conversation about this and we are in an appalling place regarding it! Thanks for being a part of the Booknificent Thursday reading community this week!
    Tina

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