Go Here, Read This

Catholic? Have a daughter? Your church would rather see her dead than raped, like Maria Goretti, sainted in 1950 in celebration of her 1902 murder by her would-be rapist. Virginity – even when you’re about to be raped – is more important than life. Got it? The murderer on the other hand lived a long life and according to Wikipedia, died peacefully in 1970. Too bad for Maria.

Great post from Natalia Antonova and the related post from Feministe.


  1. Jodi, 8. September 2008, 10:44

    The scariest part of that whole sad thing? This:

    “Pennsylvania law states (or had stated) that rape victims must prove their physical resistance to rape so that their rapists can be prosecuted. This was unofficially referred to as the “Maria Goretti law.””

    Great, so her death has supposedly put an end to the practice in Italy of a man raping a girl he wants to marry in order to ensure nobody else will offer for her. Nice to know that here in the New World her death has been used to make being raped that much more of an ordeal for victims, eh?

  2. Candace, 8. September 2008, 10:50

    That part made me ill. The whole thing makes me boil. When I wrote the post I did a quick flickr search for photos tagged Maria Goretti. The second photo that came up was a little girl at St. Maria Goretti Preschool in Phoenix, Arizona playing with a miniature altar (something she will never be allowed to do when she grows up). How anyone could send their daughter there blows my mind.


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