Books·Canadian

Had It Coming

Had It Coming is a nonfiction book by Robyn Doolittle.

Robyn Doolittle

For nearly two years, Globe and Mail reporter Robyn Doolittle investigated how Canadian police handle sexual assault cases. Her findings were shocking: across the country, in big cities and small towns, the system was dismissing a high number of allegations as "unfounded."

Had It Coming picks up where Robyn Doolittle's Unfounded series left off. Doolittle brings a personal voice to what has been a turning point for most women: the #MeToo movement and its aftermath. The world is now increasingly aware of the pervasiveness of rape culture in which powerful men got away with sexual assault and harassment for years: from Bill Cosby, Harvey Weinstein, Bill O'Reilly, and Matt Lauer, to Charlie Rose and Jian Ghomeshi. But Doolittle looks beyond specific cases to the big picture.

The issue of "consent" figures largely: not only is the public confused about what it means, but an astounding number of police officers and judges do not understand Canadian consent law. The brain's reaction to trauma and how it affects memory is also crucial to understanding victim statements. Surprisingly, Canada has the most progressive sexual assault laws in the developed world, yet the system is failing victims at every stage. 

Had It Coming is not a diatribe or manifesto, but a nuanced and informed look at how attitudes around sexual behaviour have changed and still need to change. (From Allen Lane

Robyn Doolittle is an investigative journalist with the Globe and Mail. Had It Coming is her second book. Her first book, Crazy Town, told the story of former Toronto mayor Rob Ford.

Had It Coming is on the 2020 RBC Taylor Prize shortlist. The winner will be revealed March 2, 2020.

Interviews with Robyn Doolittle

A 2012 video of an RCMP officer asking an Indigenous teenager if she was "turned on" by an alleged sexual assault was condemned as "absolutely abhorrent" by Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale this week. We discuss the video, and what more needs to be done to support survivors. 18:56
Globe and Mail reporter Robyn Doolittle talks to us about her new book, "Had It Coming: What's Fair in the Age of #MeToo?" 24:53
Journalist Robyn Doolittle has a new book out called ‘Had it coming.’ It’s been two years since the first stories alleging sexual abuse by Harvey Weinstein were published, sparking an unprecedented conversation about sexual assault. Now, what’s fair in the age of #MeToo? It’s a question Doolittle tackles in the book.’ Today on Front Burner, she talks about the #MeToo movement, what came before it, and why she thinks we need to talk about consent as a moral and ethical issue, not just a legal one. 22:13
Kelowna RCMP are reviewing their high number of "unfounded" sexual assaults. Investigative reporter Robyn Doolittle speaks with the CBC's Chris Walker about sexual assault investigations in Canada. 6:54
A 2012 video of an RCMP officer asking an Indigenous teenager if she was "turned on" by an alleged sexual assault was condemned as "absolutely abhorrent" by Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale this week. We discuss the video, and what more needs to be done to support survivors. 18:56

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