In recent years a surge of interest in the issue of sexual violence has been noted, and a plethora of research has been done by criminologists, legal scholars, psychologists, health professionals. However, they tended to objectify the issue. This particular thesis might be of interest, since it considers sexual violence through the constructive perspective and simultaneously takes into account cross-cultural dimensions, and inquires into discourses that are presented in the media. In order to do that, a discourse analysis of English-language versions of newspaper articles from two German and two Korean national newspapers over a period of five years was conducted, and various experts in the field of sexual were interviewed. It was found that the construction of sexual violence in media discourse differed and was influenced by the cultural, societal and political conditions in the country. In German sources, sexual violence was primarily constructed as a political issue and often exoticised. While Korean articles construct sexual violence as a social problem using language that borders on moral panic, while the “otherization” of this issue happens within the country. At the same time, the actors who have access to the media discourse and thus influence the construction of sexual violence also vary, with victim’s rights advocated consistently being identified as producers of discourse in both cases.
Key words: social construction, sexual violence, media discourse