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IICSA published its final Report in October 2022. This website was last updated in January 2023.

IICSA Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse

Deflection, denial and disbelief: social and political discourses about child sexual abuse and their influence on institutional responses A rapid evidence assessment

Report cover

February 2018

This report is authored by Jo Lovett, Maddy Coy and Liz Kelly

Child and Woman Abuse Studies Unit

London Metropolitan University

February 2018


This is a Rapid Evidence Assessment prepared at IICSA’s request. The views expressed in this report are those of the authors alone.

Due to the nature of the research report, the authors have worked with the predominant ideas on child sexual abuse and use the language in which those ideas were commonly expressed over the period from the 1940s to 2017. The use of language that encapsulates these ideas and meanings should not be read as an endorsement of any of the identified discourses.

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