“Little Black Girls Are Taught How to Be Silent”

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The defenders always ask the same questions: How old is 14, really? Why didn’t they tell anyone sooner if they were so innocent? Why didn’t they say anything at all?

Using the recent publicity about decades of allegations against R. Kelly as a springboard, Rumpus contributor Ashley Ford writes about the reasons young girls stay silent when sexually assaulted.

It’s a difficult read, but stirringly and beautifully written.


Lauren O'Neal is an MFA student at San Francisco State University. Her writing has appeared in publications like Slate, The New Inquiry, and The Hairpin. You can follow her on Twitter at @laureneoneal. More from this author →