Mystic River Historical Context

This Study Guide consists of approximately 47 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Mystic River.
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Child Abduction, Victimization, and Pedophilia

Though child kidnapping and rape are not new crimes, the methods predators use to find victims have changed over time. In Mystic River's prologue, set in 1975, Dave is taken by two strange men in a car. The fear of men looking for random victims on the street was a common one in the 1950s and 1960s. In the 1970s came the realization that children were generally sexually abused by people they knew rather than strangers. The focus of public education campaigns gradually changed to reflect this knowledge. Laws were also passed to help protect children. The 1978 Sexual Exploitation of Children Act made illegal obscene materials (primarily sexually explicit magazines and other types of pornography) that feature minors.

In the early 2000s, when Mystic River was written, many children were being lured into sexual situations in a different way: over the Internet. According...

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This section contains 517 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Mystic River Study Guide
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