A book to explain ‘consent’ to pre-teens (not just in terms of gender)

In recent years, especially with the #Mee movement also exploding, the debate about violence and gender discrimination in relationships between men and women has focused almost entirely on the concept of consent. The idea is that if the sex is consensual no problem. But what does consent mean? And is it true that “everything is fine as long as you agree”? A beautiful book that has just been translated into Italian by his Setinov publishing house, Agree, can we talk about it? by Justin Hancock and Fuchsia McCurry. that it Children’s book (we shall return to this), which seeks to educate them in the “practice” of consent, beginning with the correct assumption that it isIt’s not just about sex and relationships, but it’s part of our daily lives and needs trainingcontinuously.

Two pages of the consent book, can we talk about it?  By Justin Hancock and Fuchsia Makari
Two pages of the consent book, can we talk about it? By Justin Hancock and Fuchsia Makari


In a country where sex education is almost absent from schools, talking about these issues to children is an excellent guide. The publishing house recommends it from the age of 14, perhaps because in some passages it briefly deals with sexual practices. However, its written language and accompanying illustrations make it suitable for pre-teens as well. Of course, just the thought of discussing sex with 12-year-olds makes you jump in your seat. But if we consider that according to European Union research Eu Kids Online 13% of 9-10-year-olds, 12% of 11-12 and 35% of 13-14-year-olds last year I saw pictures of sexual acts thanks to pornography on the InternetIt might make sense to tell him the right way first. Failure to do so means deferring child sex education to pornography, often with disastrous results.

In Hancock’s book, an English teacher, he always talks about consensus because it is part of the Anglo-Saxon debate on the subject. But what does he do? It is an education for self-determination and continuous listening to oneself and others. In a way, understanding consensus is simple. It is wrong for people to push us to do things we don’t want to do. This is a mistake when we push others to do what they don’t want to do. When we think of consensus, however, we should aim for a higher level – he writes in the opening of the book -. Many people think that consent is simply asking someone else if they want to do something and an answer “yes” or “no”. You know right? A bit like those romantic and theatrical marriage shows in public. But is it really a free choice where the only possible alternative is only “yes” or “no”? What if a person does not know what to answer, but feels compelled to answer something? If one of them is worried about hurting the feelings of the other, how can he answer “no”? What if he doesn’t answer “yes” or “no” at all? And what to do if you are afraid to leave, if you decide not to? As you can see, consent is much more than a request.”

The book explores what that means give your consent (eg when choosing a pizza or going to the movies with friends) make sure we don’t do it under the pressure of a ‘story about how we should look’ (the way he explains how to resist) Peer pressure and cultural paradigms). He suggests to boys and girls how to understand if others have given us their consent, how to ask for it in the right way and how to refuse by stating what you want. One chapter deals with “greeting each other with approval” to educate youngsters to care for others and to read non-verbal language to see if they are expressing discomfort during non-sexual physical contact. Only then does the conversation about sex continue to be clarified The importance of communication, the ability to say no and reject certain things, and to state “when to stop” in any case. Finally, he goes on to analyze consent when one is in group situations (eg one has to go to the movies in company), but also ‘how oppression makes choices difficult’.

In this way it raises the question in a way that is useful even to adults, as it goes beyond just a matter of consent. In fact, it shows how Consent does not solve all sex and relationship problemswhich instead – as the philosopher Amiya Srinivasan has argued – requires us to ask ourselves about what we agree with and the reasons why we do it.

It’s the same topic the columnist addressed Washington Post Kristen Emba in her new book Rethinking Sex: A Provocation (“Rethink sex, provocation”), which he posted a prediction about The New York Times. “Getting rid of the old rules and replacing them with the consensus rule should have made us happy. Instead, many people today feel a little lost,” wrote Empa, who interviewed hundreds of people for her article. And he found that many women “Out of surprise and resignationDuring sex, they adjust to accepting “unexpected and disturbing acts, strangulation, for example, or other forms of porn-inspired violence” that they also dislike. “It’s time for Raising the level of good sexual encounters And to ask ourselves and our peers about it. Good sex, moral sex, is not just about getting approval so we can do whatever we want. The ideal to which we should strive instead is to desire the best interests of our partners and abstain from sex if we cannot or are not sure of our partners’ desire to do so.” Hancock’s young writers teach to take all these things into account in accessible and proportionate terms. With their age Emotional education is also and above all.

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