Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

"Consent Is a Privileged Discussion": Discursively Constructing Sexual Consent in Sex Education
by Hall, Abigail L., M.A., Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville, 2019, 89; 22588205
Abstract (Summary)

Contemporary definitions of consent reflect legal definitions of rape; the language used to describe consent mirrors language used in rape laws. Thus, definitions of consent exist within the bounds of the penal system and are conceptualized within a rape/consent binary. Data was collected from interviews with sexuality educators and discourse analysis of curricula. Findings show that consent is presented in universal terms and includes conditions where individuals cannot consent, thereby perpetuating the rape/consent binary. Boundaries are necessary for sex to be wanted, ethical, and for all persons to be respected; communication is essential for boundary-setting. Educators believe consent should be taught earlier than middle school and applied to non-sexual contexts. Both consent and boundary-setting are skills that need to be practiced. Educators acknowledge that discussion of consent privilege dominant social groups, but struggled to identify how consent would differ for marginalized people. Research on sexual consent concentrates on how a small, specific subpopulation; therefore, discourses focus on privileged social groups. An ameliorative definition of consensual sex needs to exist outside of the rape/consent binary in order to recognize that experiences of sexuality vary across intersectional identities.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Hedley, Mark
Commitee: Markowitz, Linda, Maatita, Florence
School: Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville
Department: Sociology
School Location: United States -- Illinois
Source: MAI 81/2(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Sexuality, LGBTQ studies, Sociology
Keywords: Discourse, Heteronormativity, LGBTQ, Sex education, Sexual consent
Publication Number: 22588205
ISBN: 9781085703352
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