Category Archives: sex and sexuality

Virgins and Cults and Morals, Oh My!

How does one lose virginity?

By Kyle Welsh

Virginity, or the lack thereof, plays a big role in how we treat women.

From religious practices to traditional lifestyles, high value is placed on women who have never had sex.

In The Cult of Virginity Jessica Valenti talks about the “virginity mystery” – that is, the realization that there is no medical or social definition for what a virgin actually is.  Read the rest of this entry

Bucket Lists and F*ck It Lists

Casual sex can block you from finding meaningful sex. Do you agree or disagree?

By Pamela Robinson

The internet has “disrupted” courting.

Couples sit side by side, not talking, computers or phones on their laps.

The events of courting, including breaking up, are delivered via text message.

Pornography in all forms is easy to access on the Internet.

How will relationships survive through the twenty-first century? Read the rest of this entry

RoSo’s Story of Sex-Positivity

Editors note: I’m trying to learn why some women are more sex-positive than others. So I asked my students, if they were interested, to tell me stories of their backgrounds. 

So far I have found a few things that distinguish women who experience more sex-negativity and sexual dysfunction. They — and in my youth I would count myself among them — are more likely to:

  • Worry that God will punish them for their sexuality 
  • Have sex-negative parents
  • Have sex-negative friends
  • If they are slut-shamed by their peers they feel deeply “wrong” and shameful
  • They refrain from learning about their sexuality and what works for them

RoSo is a straight 24-year-old woman of East Asian descent. Here is her story: Read the rest of this entry

Men Looking at Men Showing Skin

A while back I surveyed my straight male students on their thoughts when looking at a nude-ish picture of Sly Stallone.

Had attitudes changed since sociologist, Beth Eck, found that straight guys were pretty uncomfortable looking at that picture almost 15 years ago?

I asked them to write whatever thoughts came to mind and then I analyzed and published the results here.

But blog readers wondered what men would think if I used a more current star. So I surveyed 40 of my male students. Here’s a comparison of Sly Stallone, Channing Tatum and David Beckham. Read the rest of this entry

Once Was, Virgins Had Sex

Arianrhod, from the Llewellyn Tarot deck.

In some times and places virgins had sex.

I first discovered this while reading the story of Arianrhod in Welsh mythology.

In this tale the Welsh King, Math, must keep his feet in the lap of a virgin whenever he is not in battle. And he was always losing virgins because the job was dull. After losing one young maiden Arianrhod’s brother volunteered her for the job.

Arianrhod was not thrilled with the nomination, but she knew she would easily pass the virginity test which entailed stepping over Math’s magic rod. A stiff rod indicated a virgin, a limp rod indicted she was not. When Arianrhod jumped over the rod two children jumped from her womb.

But Arianrhod declared herself a virgin because she was a woman who owned herself. Read the rest of this entry

Think We’ve Overcome Victorian Repression?

Think we’ve overcome Victorian sexual repression and now enjoy a sex-positive society? What about statements like this:

Some girls make it difficult for the rest of us to get respect.

That’s what a sorority sister said about girls who “give it away” too easily.

When I ask my students in the progressive San Francisco Bay Area what they think about this, I often hear thoughts like this:

Yeah that’s true. Some girls do give it up too easily and make it hard on the rest of us.

Or,

Their mamas didn’t teach them right.

Read the rest of this entry

Were Victorians Repressed or Not?

For years Victorians were called repressed. Now some say they were not.

Were they?

The answer depends:

1) What do you mean by “repression.”

2) Which sex counts as “a Victorian.”  Read the rest of this entry

Sex Object vs Sexy vs Sexual

Many people think that “sexual objectification” and “sexy” and “sexual” are all the same thing.

They’re not.

Here’s a quick primer: Read the rest of this entry

What’s Wrong With Hooking Up?

By Lisa Wade

Crossposted from Ms. and Sociological Images

Hanna Rosin, senior editor at The Atlantic and author of The End of Men, has written a piece about hook-up culture on and off college campuses for the September issue of her magazine. Given that I’ve done some research on hook-up culture, here are my two cents: Rosin isn’t wrong to argue that the culture offers women sexual opportunities and independence, but she mischaracterizes the objections to hook-up culture and draws too rosy a conclusion. Read the rest of this entry

Quiz: Why Does Female Armor Suck?

Female Armor: Not so good at protecting vital organs.

Female Armor: Not so good at protecting vital organs.

Since “Female Armor Sucks” has over 11 million views you may have already seen the video below. But since students keep sending me a link, I give up: I’ll post it.

Along with a quiz:

Why does heroine-armor fail to cover vital organs? Read the rest of this entry

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