Rape and the Law

Historical and Contemporary Perspectives (First Edition)
Megan Waples
©2020, 320 pages

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Rape and the Law

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    Rape and the Law: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives examines the legal history of rape to understand why modern audiences continue to disagree about the nature of the crime, why society as a whole often fails to believe and support victims, and how we can change our understanding of and approach to the crime.

    The volume begins with an examination of American rape law, explaining the historical sources of the law and analyzing the meanings and ideas embedded in the conventional definition of rape. The second part explores how the conventional law of rape affects attitudes about autonomy and accountability, gives priority to violence over other forms of communication, and imposes risks and burdens to all. It also addresses the risks and realities of false accusations. Finally, the book proposes a revised understanding of the legal basis of rape, reconceiving the legal right and injury involved and advancing a positive consent standard.

    Rape and the Law is part of the Cognella Series on Family and Gender-Based Violence, an interdisciplinary collection of textbooks featuring cross-cultural perspectives, cutting-edge strategies and interventions, and timely research on family and gender-based violence.

    Megan Waples earned her J.D. from the University of Connecticut School of Law. She currently works in state government, writing legislation and advising legislators on legal issues. Her work within the legal profession has covered a wide range of topics, from environmental and environmental justice issues to government transparency to corporate accountability.
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