Description: “Language can never be neutral; it creates versions of reality.”  Yet when we discuss sexual assault, we constantly use the language of consensual sex to describe assaultive acts. This language often implies consent and romance, rather than criminal acts. In addition, we describe violence against women in passive terms, allowing the perpetrators of this violence to remain invisible and unaccountable. We also use language that objectifies or blames sexual assault victims.
This interactive webinar will explore the language of sexual assault: how we talk about and write about this crime. We will discuss specific examples of the language we use and explore how to discuss sexual assault in a way that more accurately depicts the crime.
. Bavelas, Janet and Linda Coates, Is it Sex or Assault: Erotic Versus Violent Language in Sexual Assault Trial Judgment, 10 Journal of Social Distress and the Homeless 29 (2001).
Audience: This session will provide useful information and strategies for a wide variety of professionals, including prosecutors and other lawyers, law enforcement, medical professionals, judges, victim advocates, journalists and communications professionals, and others who interact with and write about sexual assault victims.
Closed Captioning: Please contact Eliana Theodorou at firstname.lastname@example.org if you require closed captioning at least 72 hours prior to the webinar. Please put “closed captioning” in the subject line of your e-mail.