Dizin Eklenmedi

Queer Theory as Applied to Comprehensive Sexual Education

Received: 2014-10-23 Accepted: 2015-10-12 Published: 2015-12-15
DOI:10.15340/2147350121860Pages:47-62

Abstract


 

Much of the research and debate on sexual education focuses on Abstinence Only vs. Comprehensive Sexuality Education, and is usually fueled by politics and moral opinions about what kind of sexuality should be discussed in schools (Constantine 324). Schools are an ideal site for sexual education; therefore, much of the health education research continues to emphasize school-based programs. Sexuality education should work to help teenagers, who may nor may not be sexually active, develop decision-making skills that they can utilize over a lifetime. From a public health standpoint, CSE is fiscally more responsible than AO. There is no research including queer theory in sexual education, despite its emphasis on identity development, recognition of influence of power, its celebration of difference rather than sameness, and its inclusion of all types of sexualities, as well as its grounding in human sexuality and gender expression as a way of understanding the world. Queer theory deconstructs and destabilizes the traditional discourses that have led to our present understanding of sexuality and identity and, by providing an alternative to the dominant discourses, allow individuals to embrace and value difference and new conversations to form. I have developed an eight-week sexuality education course grounded in queer theory that is comprehensive in nature (that is, it covers both abstinence and contraception), but which also creates space for students to talk about gendered expectations and norms, ideas of identity differences and development, deconstruction of cultural fixations on sexuality, frank discussion on racial sexuality, references for power and control from discourses such as media and religions, discouraging stigma and bullying by de-stigmatizing non-normative sexualities, providing information on consent, coercion, and rape, and helping teens to make decisions about not just having sex, but any decisions in their lives. This course will give teens an internal locus of control for forming identities and sexualities. It will serve as a liaison between the messages from parents and the world and the teen, allowing them safe space in a controlled manner to work out the subjectivities with which they must make sense of while they are going through high school.

 

Keywords: Sexual education, queer theory,nonnormative sexualities

 

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