Philosophical Studies

, Volume 167, Issue 1, pp 25-40

First online:

Fickle consent

  • Tom DoughertyAffiliated withDepartment of Philosophy, The University of Sydney Email author 

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Why is consent revocable? In other words, why must we respect someone's present dissent at the expense of her past consent? This essay argues against act-based explanations and in favor of a rule-based explanation. A rule prioritizing present consent will serve our interests the best, in light of our interests in having flexibility over our consent and in minimizing the possibility of error in people's judgments about whether we consent.


Consent Tense Present Past Promise Rights