by Chessy Prout
The University of Arkansas One Book, One Community committee has selected I Have the Right To: A High School Survivor's Story of Sexual Assault, Justice, and Hope for the 2019 reading program.
Chessy Prout was a 15-year-old student at a prestigious New England boarding school in 2014 when she was sexually assaulted by Owen Labrie, a popular senior at the school. She reported the attack and Labrie was arrested and charged. The ensuing trial revealed a rape culture at the school that included a student "ritual" involving senior boys trying to "score" with younger girls before graduation. In I Have the Right To, Prout tells her story again, in often wrenching detail - but she also looks forward in the book - advocating for a cultural change and a "Bill of Rights" for sexual assault survivors.
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