Researchers Found What Consent Looks Like Isn't Always Straightforward on College Campuses
“Let's be real: You're here so you want this.”
BY JENNIFER S. HIRSCH AND SHAMUS KHAN
Consent in college is a big topic. Much time has been spent on what consent looks like, who is and isn't getting it, and what happens when it's ignored. But no matter how many lessons young people get about consent during their first week of college, the ways in which they actually practice it can drastically differ from the ideal. In Sexual Citizens: A Landmark Study of Sex, Power, and Assault on Campus, researchers Jennifer S. Hirsch and Shamus Khan collected the findings of years of research on the sexual realities of college students. They found — among many other things — that college students often take factors that have nothing to do with consent to mean permission to have sex. In this excerpt of the book published by W.W. Norton & Company, researchers hear from a student who was assaulted after someone took her being in their room alone at night as consent, and explore how heavily consent weighs on students' minds.
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