The idea of youth sexuality makes many adults anxious, but sexuality is a very real part of youth and is the subject of many important social issues. Society now increasingly, sometimes grudgingly, recognizes youth as sexual actors; this collection examines contradictory public feelings related to youth sexualities, including perennial and new topics such as sex education, sexting, teen mothers, masculinities, sexualization, popular culture, the increasing visibility of LGBTQ youth, and the digital world.
The contributors examine the back-and-forth of adult and institutional concerns, policies, and practices as they both govern and are influenced by youths’ sexual subjectivities, identities, actions, and activism. The first volume historicizes “official knowledge” and cultural constructions of youth sexualities; offers examples of the “framing” of youth through research, film, the media, and transnational NGOs; and foregrounds youths’ experiences of sexuality in everyday life. The second volume considers adult and youth activism. Through first-person and analytical accounts, the book offers multiple perspectives of ways in which adult professionals, such as youth workers and researchers, can work side-by-side with youth rather than “above” or “in front of” them.
- Focuses on a range of youth sexualities and experiences
- Offers an innovative analysis of the role of public feelings to show how adults monitor youth sexualities and how youth actively respond
- Provides researchers, policymakers, activists, NGO workers, educators, and communities new lenses through which to understand youth sexualities
- Shows how activists work to include and address youth perspectives on difficult or unpopular topics
- Incorporates the contributors’ expertise in disciplines ranging from women’s, gender, and sexuality studies to educational and cultural studies to communication, rhetoric, anthropology, and sociology
- Connects research in youth sexualities to the increasingly influential “affective turn” perspective of critical theory