Open main menu

Elizabeth A. Kelly CBE (born 1951)[1] is a British professor and director of the Child and Woman Abuse Studies Unit (CWASU), London Metropolitan University,[2] former head of the, now defunct, Women's National Commission,[3] and co-chair, along with Marai Larasi, of the End Violence Against Women Coalition.[4]

Liz Kelly
Elizabeth A. Kelly

1951 (age 67–68)
United Kingdom
Academic work
InstitutionsChild and Woman Abuse Studies Unit (CWASU), London Metropolitan University
End Violence Against Women Coalition


Kelly has written numerous papers and articles relating to violence against women and children, and has been a guest editor on the journal Child Abuse Review.[5]

Her review of why so many alleged rapists go unprosecuted and unconvicted, which she conducted for the Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate, stated, "that at each stage of the legal process, stereotypes and prejudices play a part in decision-making".[6][7]

In her book "The Hidden Gender of Law", Kelly argues "there is no clear distinction between consensual sex and rape, but a continuum of pressure, threat, coercion and force". She claims that all women experience sexual violence at some points in their lives.[8]

Kelly's publication "Surviving Sexual Violence" defines sexual violence as including "any physical, visual, verbal or sexual act that is experienced by the woman or girl, at the time or later, as a threat, invasion or assault, that has the effect of hurting her or degrading her and/or takes away her ability to control". Such a definition was criticised by Wendy McElroy, describing it as "disastrously subjective" also noting "regret is not a benchmark of consent".[9]

Kelly was awarded the CBE in the 2000 New Years Honours, for services to combating violence against women and children.[10]



  1. ^ "Kelly, Liz, 1951–". Virtual International Authority File (VIAF). Retrieved 30 September 2015.
  2. ^ "Liz Kelly". Child and Woman Abuse Studies Unit (CWASU), London Metropolitan University. Archived from the original on 19 March 2014. Retrieved 30 September 2015. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  3. ^ "Professor Liz Kelly CBE". Women's National Commission. Retrieved 30 September 2015.
  4. ^ "Our people: our board of trustees". End Violence Against Women Coalition. Retrieved 6 October 2015.
  5. ^ Kelly, Liz (guest editor); Pringle, Keith (guest editor) (November 2009). "Editorial: Gender and child harm". Child Abuse Review. 18 (6): 367–371. doi:10.1002/car.1097.
  6. ^ Baird, Vera (10 April 2002). "You've been raped. Why bother reporting it?". The Guardian. Retrieved 30 September 2015.
  7. ^ Kelly, Liz (October 2001). Routes to (in)justice: a research review on the reporting, investigation and prosecution of rape cases. London: HM Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate (HMCPSI). p. 6. OCLC 224119621. Literature review. Pdf.
  8. ^ Messerschmidt, James W. (27 September 1993). Masculinities and Crime: Critique and Reconceptualization of Theory. Rowman & Littlefield. ISBN 9780847678693 – via Google Books.
  9. ^ McElroy, Wendy (1 January 2001). Sexual Correctness: The Gender-Feminist Attack on Women. McFarland. ISBN 9780786411443 – via Google Books.
  10. ^ "No. 55710". The London Gazette (Supplement). 30 December 1999. p. 10.

External linksEdit