I am writing a research paper about why the number of sexual assaults is so high in India. How can I write a thesis statement about this?

Expert Answers
aloha968 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Read papers on the subject from a multitude of sources, newspapers, magazines, op-ed, and scholarly journal articles.  (As an aside, make sure you keep track of each article for reference purposes.)  Each will provide you with the authors point of view.  It would probably behoove you to read papers on rape from different countries and not limit your research to just India -- you might find a common thread, or you might be surprised at the statistics you discover.  From these different view points and approaches to the problem, you should be able to come to your own conclusion and write your thesis statement -- why do you think the number of rape cases in India is so high.  So for example, after reading you might decide the high rape rates in India are due to societal mores.  Based on this statement, your paper would be centered around evidence, what are the social mores which contribute, statistics, what are the numbers, and possible solutions, what is needed to change society.

Hope that helps. 

annekld | Student

Before writing your thesis, try to gather as much general information as you can about India and the high level of rapes that have been occurring there. Make sure that you use multiple sources that cover a range of view points. Rape is a consistently underreported crime, so while official crime statistics are an important resource, they should not be your only resource for determining the number of incidences.

While you are doing this general reading, make a note of anything that sparks a thought about possible reasons that this is occurring or contributing factors. This could be something you read about the role of women in India, the political and economical climate, general violence in the area or a combination of factors that you think may be related. You may also want to look at cultural views of rape perpetrators and victims as this varies by country.

Once you have formed your own thoughts about why the number of rapes is so high in India, you will have your thesis. After you have formed it, research more deeply into the area you have focused on and use that information to support your thesis. If your understanding of the issue changes during the course of your more comprehensive research, it is completely fine to adjust your thesis. In fact, it is preferable to rewrite your thesis instead of omitting information you learn that is contrary to it. 

lisabbutts | Student

To construct a thesis statement for your paper you must first establish a reasonable hypothesis supported by research that answers the question you are posing. It is a difficult question without a single definitive answer so your statement will likely posit several different reasons which you will then provide evidence to support. Possible angles to consider would be cultural factors about the role of women in Indian society: are they expected to be subservient, viewed as second-class citizens? Then there are the criminal factors concerning rate of reporting by victims and prosecution of perpetrators. You might also consider looking at different cities to discover where rates are highest. Are they urban or rural locations? More heavily populated what one religion or another?

royalcourtier | Student

Writing about such a contentious topic you must be sure that your methodology is as correct as possible, and that you have as much accurate data as you can get. For instance, there is a big difference between number of reported rapes, and actual number of rapes.

To compare the number of rapes between different countries, you must ensure that the statistics are as complete and comparable as possible. There is no point in finding that one country has a much lower number of rapes, when in reality there are a lower percentage of rapes reported. So being able to determine the actual number of rapes would seem to be the main issue. Beyond that, the statistics are simple.

Rather than relying on official statistics, I would suggest that you need to obtain the results of surveys and studies into sexual crimes. Even a small scale population survey, which asks a cross section of people about their experience of sexual crime, would be more reliable and useful than official statistics of reported rapes.