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False Beliefs and Consent to Sex

Dsouza, M; (2022) False Beliefs and Consent to Sex. The Modern Law Review 10.1111/1468-2230.12738. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

When, if ever, do mistaken beliefs render sexual activity non-consensual despite a person's seeming consent? I suggest that existing answers can be improved upon by paying due attention to two things, (1) that valid consent is often given through exercises of sexual autonomy that are, to different extents, unreflective rather than considered; and (2) that a belief can define both the object of consent, and a precondition for it. I propose that where V putatively consents to sexual activity with D, the falseness of a belief that V holds renders the sexual activity non-consensual when it means either that what happened to V fell outside the (consideredly or unreflectively selected) boundaries of the object of V's consent, or that a precondition that V consideredly set for her consent, had not been met.

Type: Article
Title: False Beliefs and Consent to Sex
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1111/1468-2230.12738
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1111/1468-2230.12738
Language: English
Additional information: © 2022 The Authors. The Modern Law Review published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Modern Law Review Limited. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.
Keywords: Sexual consent, sexual autonomy, parameters, preconditions, false beliefs
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Laws
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10141770
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