The Scope of Consent

ISBN : 9780192894793

Tom Dougherty
192 Pages
135 x 216 mm
Pub date
Jul 2021
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The scope of someone's consent is the range of actions that they permit by giving consent. The Scope of Consent investigates the under-explored question of which normative principle governs the scope of consent. To answer this question, the book's investigation involves taking a stance on what constitutes consent. By appealing to the idea that someone can justify their behaviour by appealing to another person's consent, Dougherty defends the view that consent consists in behaviour that expresses a consent-giver's will for how a consent-receiver behaves. The ultimate conclusion of the book is that the scope of consent is determined by certain evidence that bears on the appropriate interpretation of the consent.


1 The question of consent's scope
Part 1: The Mental Account
2 The Mental View
3 The Permissive Intention Principle
Part 2: The Successful Communication Account
4 The Behavioral View
5 The Successful Communication Principle
6 Why we should reject the Uptake Condition
7 Why we should reject the Uptake Condition
Part 3: The Evidential Account
8 The Expression of Will View I: Interpersonal justification
9 The Expression of Will View II: Two ways to consent
10 The Available Reliable Evidence Principle
11 The Due Diligence Principle
12 Conclusions

About the author: 

Tom Dougherty is an Associate Professor in the Department of Philosophy at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He completed his PhD at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and has previously worked at the University of Cambridge, the University of Sydney, and Stanford University. He specialises in normative ethics and has published articles on consent in journals including Ethics, Philosophy and Public Affairs, Nous, Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, and Philosophical Studies.

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