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Consent in Pop Culture


Online, find a pop culture sample that includes portrayals of sexual consent. 

Examples may include song lyrics, music videos, print ads, movie clips, video game screengrabs, etc. Upload (or present) this resource.

Analyze this pop culture sample you’ve chosen. How is sexual consent discussed or represented? Is power mutual or skewed? How so? Is consent represented in a clear way? Confusing way? Healthy? Regressive or progressive? Analyze and discuss.


Scott Pilgrim vs The World

  • Although victims and survivors of sexual assault are often painted as liars or accused of “asking for it” based on the way they dress, how much they drink, or their sexual reputations, only 2% to 10% of all reports are estimated to be false.


  • About 10% of hate crimes against gay men and lesbians include sexual assault.


  • The rate of sexualized violence against U.S. women of color are far higher than rates of attack upon white women. Violence against white women is actually declining, while it continues to increase among women of color. 


  • The Human Rights Watch found that at least 50% of agricultural workers cannot come forward with sexual assault reports without fear of deportation because of their undocumented status.

  • Representation in media is important and can be an effective tool for breaking the stigmatization of being a survivor or victim of rape and sexual assault. For example, a particularly powerful episode of Grey’s Anatomy, which featured a sexual assault survivor coming forward despite the fear that she would not be believed, inspired an increase of women coming forward to report their own assault. There was a 43% sustained increase in calls to the RAINN sexual assault hotline over a 48-hour period following the airing of the episode.

Sources: The Representation Project, Human Rights Watch, and Violence Against Women  

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