Attitudes and Knowledge of Bahamian College Students Regarding Sexual Consent




Sexual consent, Child sexual abuse, Adolescent sexual behaviour, Sex crimes


The Bahamas is reported to have a high incidence of rape. As lack of consent prior to sexual intercourse is typically associated with sexual abuse or rape, this paper focuses on the provision of consent prior to sexual intercourse arising from the sexual experiences of university students in The Bahamas. This Internet-based study of 621 students (74.1% female and 25.4% male, with 0.5% indicating that their sex was “other”) indicates that—if the legal interpretation of rape is applied to the sexual experiences of study participants—almost half were victims of rape or sexual abuse. None of the males who admitted to being victims of rape reported the event. This suggests that males, as well as many female rape/sexual abuse victims, may never receive the help they need to help them recover from their attack. Female students in The Bahamas who consent to unwanted sexual intercourse appear to have been pressured to a greater extent than their counterparts in North America.

Author Biographies

Nicolette Bethel, University of The Bahamas

Social Sciences - Anthropology

William J. Fielding, University of the Bahamas

Institutional Strengthening & Accreditation


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