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Marital rape stands at the intersection of the socio-legal issues arising from both domestic violence and sexual assault. For centuries, women who suffered sexual assault perpetrated by their spouses had no legal recourse. A man's conjugal rights included his right to have sexual intercourse with his wife regardless of whether she consented. This right has been recognised in law, and still is in some jurisdictions.
This book emerges from the research undertaken by an innovative multi-country academic collaborative project dedicated to comparatively analyzing the legal treatment of sexual assault in intimate relationships ("marital rape"), with a view to challenging the legal impunity for and inadequate legal responses to this form of gendered violence.