Chanel Contos – Consent Laid Bare

Australia's Biggest Book Club book for February 2024

The game-changing book about sex and consent that every woman – and man – should read

In 2021, Chanel Contos posted on Instagram asking people to share their stories of sexual assault during their schooling years. This post unexpectedly went viral and almost 7000 people sent in testimonies describing behaviour that constitutes rape. Virtually none of these instances were reported, and almost all of them were by people they knew.

How and why is this happening in an era of growing equality? Chanel Contos argues that when it comes to sex, we are still working with an outdated social contract that privileges men’s pleasure at the expense of women’s humanity.

Consent Laid Bare challenges the lingering inequality that reinforces this behaviour. It asks if consent is possible in a world where female sexuality has been hijacked by forces such as porn, patriarchy and male entitlement. It gives girls and women the encouragement to seek sex that is truly enjoyable and equips them with the information they need to properly consent. It asks boys and men to become advocates for sex centered around intimacy rather than fuelled by aggression.

It is a battle cry from a generation no longer prepared to stay silent.

Australia’s Biggest Book Club is brought to you by the Australia Institute.

If the content of this webinar is cause for concern, help is available. Call 1800 RESPECT, or 1800 737 732; Lifeline on 13 11 14; or Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800.

**Special offer**
Buy ‘Consent Laid Bare‘ and read along. Our friends at Pan Macmillan have a special offer on Consent Laid Bare for Australia’s Biggest Book Club Members.

Get 25% off the RRP (RRP$36.99).

Just select ‘Direct’ from the drop down ‘Buy’ options and
enter the discount code CONTOSBOOKCLUB29 at the check-out.

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  • Guest author: Chanel Contos, Consent activist, Teach Us Consent 

    Chanel Contos founded Teach Us Consent, a campaign that mandated consent education in Australia. In order to achieve this, she worked closely with politicians from across the political spectrum, including prime ministers. Chanel was the recipient of the Australian Human Rights Commission Young People’s Medal in 2021, and in 2023 she was named NSW Young Woman of the Year for her persistent efforts towards eradicating rape culture. Chanel has also been presented with the prestigious Diana Award for her humanitarian work, and in 2022 she was listed as one of the BBC’s 100 inspiring and influential women worldwide. Chanel has a Masters in Education, Gender and International Development from University College London and was recently appointed by Julia Gillard to chair the Global Institute for Women’s Leadership’s Youth Advisory Committee. In 2023, she published her first book, Consent Laid Bare, (Macmillan Australia) described by Marie Claire as “a blistering, unflinching – and therefore sometimes uncomfortable – look at Australia’s rape culture.”. Also in 2023, Chanel was a panelist at the inaugural SXSW Sydney and spoke at the National Press Club – one of the youngest people to ever do so.

  • Host: Elizabeth Morison, Climate Initiatives Lead, Australia Institute Climate & Energy program 

    Elizabeth Morison is the Climate Initiatives Lead in the Climate and Energy Program. Liz started as an inaugural Anne Kantor Young Women Environmentalists Fellow, before joining the Australia Institute as a researcher. She is now Climate Initiatives Lead for the Climate & Energy Program. Liz’s work in climate and environmental integrity is informed by her multidisciplinary background in research and data analysis, journalism, communications and community organising. She holds an Honours degree in Conservation Biology, with a focus on the impacts of climate extremes on ecosystems.


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