In this article in the Oxford Journal of Legal Studies, my colleague Erika Rackley and I examine the harms of image-based sexual abuse and set out the ways in which laws and policies need to be reformed.
Abstract: ‘Advances in technology have transformed and expanded the ways in which sexual violence can be perpetrated. One new manifestation of such violence is the non-consensual creation and/or distribution of private sexual images: what we conceptualise as ‘image-based sexual abuse’. This article delineates the scope of this new concept and identifies the individual and collective harms it engenders. We argue that the individual harms of physical and mental illness, together with the loss of dignity, privacy and sexual autonomy, combine to constitute a form of cultural harm that impacts directly on individuals, as well as on society as a whole. While recognising the limits of law, we conclude by considering the options for redress and the role of law, seeking to justify the deployment of the expressive and coercive powers of criminal and civil law as a means of encouraging cultural change.’
We have further developed our ideas in another article which argues that all forms of image-based sexual abuse are part of a pattern of sexual violence, a form of sexual assault, and should be recognised as such. This article is published in the journal Feminist Legal Studies and is called: Beyond ‘Revenge Porn’: the continuum of image-based sexual abuse.
- Clare McGlynn and Erika Rackley, ‘Revenge Pornography: The New Law’ (Presentation, April 2015)
- Clare McGlynn and Erika Rackley, ‘The Cultural Harm of rape pornography’ (Free Speech Debate, 2015)