Changing the Culture: sex and consent

Share your ideas and make your voice heard to help create change at Bath Spa University.

Content warning: the following contains references to sexual and domestic abuse. If you have been affected by any of these issues, support is available .

For too long we have lived in a society where sexual violence is so common it has often been considered a normal or inevitable part of life, particularly for women. The #MeToo movement created an outpouring of stories, initially from Hollywood, and then from individuals everywhere. Recent events in the UK have renewed a collective sense of outrage, and again highlighted the urgent need for cultural change. 

Sexual violence and harassment are not OK. Everyone should feel safe when walking around campus, walking home and living their lives.

At Bath Spa University we want to actively change the culture and create a community that allows all of us to feel safe and to thrive, where we all feel free to express ourselves without fear.

What is sexual violence?

Sexual violence is cat calling, unwanted sexting, revenge porn, sex pressure, domestic abuse, coercive control, rape, stalking, online harassment, slut shaming and at its most extreme, murder. In a society where sexual violence is pervasive, we are all affected by it, directly or indirectly, everyday.

  • We acknowledge that the majority of sexual violence victim-survivors are women.
  • We acknowledge that the majority of sexual predators are men.
  • We acknowledge that the majority of men are not sexual predators.
  • We acknowledge that sexual violence is committed against people of all genders.
  • We acknowledge that all sexual violence is under reported.
  • We acknowledge that, even when sexual violence is reported, it relies on systems of power that too often protect the perpetrator.
  • We acknowledge that male victims of sexual violence are the least likely to report or seek support.
  • We acknowledge that it takes a whole community to create cultural change.
  • We want to create a safe culture for everyone.

We need your voice. We want to loudly and proudly create a culture that challenges sexual violence and proclaims our commitment to respect for everyone in our community.

How to get involved

We invite you to submit your creative ideas on the theme of 'Changing the Culture - Sex and Consent'. You can submit your idea in whatever creative format you choose - examples might be a short film (max 2 minutes), creative writing (max 500 words), art work (digital/ paper/ canvas), song (recorded or written), fashion piece, dance (filmed), or a monologue or conversation filmed on your phone. Submit your work (via video link, PDF, or JPG) below.

You might want to create a vision of the culture you want to be a part of - a post #MeToo world. You might want to highlight aspects of the culture you want to change.

Your work may (with your consent) be included in an exhibition to be launched in Semester 1 of the 2021/22 academic year as part of an awareness raising campaign about the values we stand for and the culture we are creating.

ALL voices are welcomed and needed — we encourage responses from all genders, BAME students, LGBTQ+ students, disabled students and neurodivergent students. Share your vision, share your experience, share your contribution to creating a better, safer, more respectful culture.

Be the change.

Deadline: 31st May 2021

More information

What is Changing the Culture?

This campaign is part of a wider Bath Spa University 'Changing the Culture' project addressing the themes of sex and consent, racial harassment, bullying, hate crime, bystander intervention and allyship.

Bath Spa University is also creating a 3 year plan to address sexual violence and misconduct including a new policy, with plans for specialist training and trained staff to be sexual violence liaison officers (SVLOs). If you want to contibute ideas to the contents of the new sexual violence framework we are currently putting together, you can get involved by contacting Bridget Ferguson, Deputy Head of Student Wellbeing Services (and trained Sexual Violence Liaison Officer).

The University and Students’ Union is also planning a series of events for students to share their experiences, concerns and ideas with more details to be announced in the Student and Staff newsletters and on social media soon.

Guidelines and advice

You can choose any creative medium to express your idea on the theme of changing the culture.

Your story and/ or voice is important. However, please do not name other students in your submission - unless they have consented and they are actively engaged in your creative submission (otherwise it will not be accepted). We will discuss with you whether you would like your submission to be named or anonymous prior to the exhibition.

If you want to report an incident of sexual violence and/or make a formal complaint to the University or report to the police please do so using the information on the 24/7 Support page.

Some ideas for your submission

  • Film yourself speaking to camera (on your iphone)
  • Write a poem
  • Write a short story or opinion piece (500 words max)
  • Write a song or compose a piece of music
  • Make a sculpture
  • Paint your idea
  • Dance your expression
  • Create a short film (max 120 seconds)

Use these questions for inspiration to get you started:

  • What is your vision of a post #MeToo world?
  • How do you feel about sex and consent?
  • How do you want to feel about sex and consent?
  • What do you stand for?
  • What kind of community do you want to live in?

Who are we?

We are team made up of Bath Spa University and Students' Union staff who are passionate about changing the culture around sexual violence. For more information you can contact:

Support

If you have been affected by any of the issues in this project please reach out - there are a number of ways to access support:

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