It's got to be about enjoying yourself: young people, sexual pleasure,and sex and relationships education

HIRST, Julia (2012). It's got to be about enjoying yourself: young people, sexual pleasure,and sex and relationships education. Sex Education: sexuality, society and learning, 13 (4), 423-436.

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Link to published version:: 10.1080/14681811.2012.747433

Abstract

Pleasure as a component of sexualities and relationships education (SRE) has been subject to much recent discussion. Arguably, academic debate has been more prominent than practitioner perspectives, with theoretical articulations and critique superseding pragmatic attention to integrating pleasure into learning about sexualities and relationships. Though there are exceptions, sexuality education that recognises pleasure and desire for young people remains absent in many contexts, despite calls for its inclusion for more than two decades. This paper offers a synthesis of expert opinion to outline the importance of pleasure and positive SRE to sexual health, rights, equality and safeguarding against coercion and harm. The paper acknowledges the often uneasy associations between sexuality, education and youth by identifying key political and academic debates, before offering a rationale on ways forward that may help persuade curriculum gatekeepers of its merits. Analysis focuses mainly on young women with reflections on current knowledge and the need for more empirically based research and theorising on boys and men. Policy developments relate to the UK, though issues raised have direct relevance for contexts where SRE is similarly contested. Keywords: sex education; gender equality; pleasure; sexual health; young people; UK

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: sex education; gender equality; pleasure; sexual health; young people; UK
Research Institute, Centre or Group: Sociology, Politics and Policy Research Group
Identification Number: 10.1080/14681811.2012.747433
Depositing User: Julia Hirst
Date Deposited: 28 Feb 2013 11:24
Last Modified: 19 Aug 2015 20:58
URI: http://shura.shu.ac.uk/id/eprint/6758

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