SlutWalking in the Shadow of the Law

59 Pages Posted: 22 Feb 2012 Last revised: 5 Apr 2014

Date Written: March 9, 2014


This Article examines the convergence of two seemingly contradictory developments. One is the widespread rape of women by acquaintances, dates, and intimates, mostly without legal recourse. The other is the emergence of a generation of women who embrace a pro-sex orientation and define their sexualities accordingly. To date, legal theorists have failed to reconcile this move toward sex positivity with the ubiquity of non-stranger rape. SlutWalk – the global grassroots initiative that protests rape by embracing sex – provides a vehicle for first exploring tensions that arise when sexual agency is asserted against a backdrop of pervasive sexual violation. On analysis, sexual agency must be reconceived, which in turn exposes new perspectives on rape law and informs the next phase of reform.

Suggested Citation

Tuerkheimer, Deborah, SlutWalking in the Shadow of the Law (March 9, 2014). 98 Minnesota Law Review 1453, Available at SSRN: or

Deborah Tuerkheimer (Contact Author)

Northwestern University - Pritzker School of Law ( email )

375 E. Chicago Ave
Chicago, IL 60611
United States

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