counter create hit Risky Lessons: Sex Education and Social Inequality - Download Free eBook
Hot Best Seller

Risky Lessons: Sex Education and Social Inequality

Availability: Ready to download

Winner of the 2009 American Sociological Association's Distinguished Contribution to Scholarship Book Award, from the Race, Gender, and Class Section. Curricula in U.S. public schools are often the focus of heated debate, and few subjects spark more controversy than sex education. While conservatives argue that sexual abstinence should be the only message, liberals counter Winner of the 2009 American Sociological Association's Distinguished Contribution to Scholarship Book Award, from the Race, Gender, and Class Section. Curricula in U.S. public schools are often the focus of heated debate, and few subjects spark more controversy than sex education. While conservatives argue that sexual abstinence should be the only message, liberals counter that an approach that provides comprehensive instruction and helps young people avoid sexually transmitted diseases and pregnancy is necessary. Caught in the middle are the students and teachers whose everyday experiences of sex education are seldom as clear-cut as either side of the debate suggests. Risky Lessons brings readers inside three North Carolina middle schools to show how students and teachers support and subvert the official curriculum through their questions, choices, viewpoints, and reactions. Most important, the book highlights how sex education's formal and informal lessons reflect and reinforce gender, race, and class inequalities. Ultimately critical of both conservative and liberal approaches, Fields argues for curricula that promote social and sexual justice. Sex education's aim need not be limited to reducing the risk of adolescent pregnancies, disease, and sexual activity. Rather, its lessons should help young people to recognize and contend with sexual desires, power, and inequalities.


Compare

Winner of the 2009 American Sociological Association's Distinguished Contribution to Scholarship Book Award, from the Race, Gender, and Class Section. Curricula in U.S. public schools are often the focus of heated debate, and few subjects spark more controversy than sex education. While conservatives argue that sexual abstinence should be the only message, liberals counter Winner of the 2009 American Sociological Association's Distinguished Contribution to Scholarship Book Award, from the Race, Gender, and Class Section. Curricula in U.S. public schools are often the focus of heated debate, and few subjects spark more controversy than sex education. While conservatives argue that sexual abstinence should be the only message, liberals counter that an approach that provides comprehensive instruction and helps young people avoid sexually transmitted diseases and pregnancy is necessary. Caught in the middle are the students and teachers whose everyday experiences of sex education are seldom as clear-cut as either side of the debate suggests. Risky Lessons brings readers inside three North Carolina middle schools to show how students and teachers support and subvert the official curriculum through their questions, choices, viewpoints, and reactions. Most important, the book highlights how sex education's formal and informal lessons reflect and reinforce gender, race, and class inequalities. Ultimately critical of both conservative and liberal approaches, Fields argues for curricula that promote social and sexual justice. Sex education's aim need not be limited to reducing the risk of adolescent pregnancies, disease, and sexual activity. Rather, its lessons should help young people to recognize and contend with sexual desires, power, and inequalities.

30 review for Risky Lessons: Sex Education and Social Inequality

  1. 4 out of 5

    Sam Grace

    Risky Lessons finds itself firmly within the “sexual liberal” side of the equation in that it works entirely from the position that youth should be empowered by being agents and making informed decisions. However, Fields stands with others in condemning the clinical tone of even comprehensive sex ed, demonstrating the failures of that style in her public and private school fieldsites as compared with the success of a more embodied and intimate comprehensive sex ed program in a Quaker school. Her Risky Lessons finds itself firmly within the “sexual liberal” side of the equation in that it works entirely from the position that youth should be empowered by being agents and making informed decisions. However, Fields stands with others in condemning the clinical tone of even comprehensive sex ed, demonstrating the failures of that style in her public and private school fieldsites as compared with the success of a more embodied and intimate comprehensive sex ed program in a Quaker school. Her discussion of inequality addresses gender roles and, to a lesser degree, heterosexuality and race and SES. But her discussion of race is limited to considering the ways that African American girls as promiscuous and as welfare queens have become symbols of the failure of sex education. I was disappointed not only at the lack of any other groups of people of color, but at the limited consideration of even African Americans (e.g., the skin color of illustrations in learning materials as the extent of racial inequality discussed in her section on Depicting Bodies in Sex Education). Fields argues, “As long as the focus remains on pregnancies and disease and on people whom adults insist are children, educators, policy makers, and researchers will be unable to articulate a vision of young women’s – and, in particular, young African American women’s – sexuality that is both agentic and engaged.” (168) Even if she is right, Fields has not convinced me in her book that an engaged and agentic sexuality is a more important goal than material success that the entire risk-based argument is based on. That too, is an important lesson for me to take with me as I begin my own research. In short, she says a lot of things I agree with and think are important, but she doesn't take it to the next level or offer anything surprising or new.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Chong Liu

    Found it much more like an observation, and doesn't have enough theoretical debate. A little bit disappointed. Found it much more like an observation, and doesn't have enough theoretical debate. A little bit disappointed.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Vera

    "Risky lessons" demonstrates that sex education is so much more than teaching and learning about human reproduction, biology, contraception or abstinence. Jessica Fields makes an argument that the way we teach (or do not teach) sex and sexuality inevitably makes evident our assumptions about power, gender roles, race and class. This book is a critical inquary into how knowledge about sex is loaded with social functions and ideologies. "Risky lessons" demonstrates that sex education is so much more than teaching and learning about human reproduction, biology, contraception or abstinence. Jessica Fields makes an argument that the way we teach (or do not teach) sex and sexuality inevitably makes evident our assumptions about power, gender roles, race and class. This book is a critical inquary into how knowledge about sex is loaded with social functions and ideologies.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Carnelius

    Great for anyone who works with young people, especially dealing with sensitive subjects and school systems. Was good for me to read an academic book, but after reading - I'm in the mood for a novel... Great for anyone who works with young people, especially dealing with sensitive subjects and school systems. Was good for me to read an academic book, but after reading - I'm in the mood for a novel...

  5. 4 out of 5

    Vasili Birlidis

    A detailed case study of three North Carolina middle schools' approach to sex education. Well worth reading, especially in this troubling time for education and sexuality, but slightly out of date. A detailed case study of three North Carolina middle schools' approach to sex education. Well worth reading, especially in this troubling time for education and sexuality, but slightly out of date.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Tate

    Pushes the sex education debate forward by questioning both the utility and transformative possibilities available in the classroom.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Amy DiCaprio

  8. 5 out of 5

    Alex

  9. 5 out of 5

    Sarakfleurant

  10. 5 out of 5

    Christine Stamper

  11. 5 out of 5

    Rose

  12. 5 out of 5

    Kelsey Haeuser

  13. 5 out of 5

    Julianna M Peppers

  14. 4 out of 5

    Kendra

  15. 4 out of 5

    Julia

  16. 5 out of 5

    Lauren

  17. 5 out of 5

    Tori

  18. 4 out of 5

    Cati

  19. 4 out of 5

    maxwell

  20. 5 out of 5

    Jacob J

  21. 5 out of 5

    Liz

  22. 4 out of 5

    Ava

  23. 4 out of 5

    Maria

  24. 4 out of 5

    Abbie Hall

  25. 4 out of 5

    kelly

  26. 5 out of 5

    Emily

  27. 5 out of 5

    Riv Begun

  28. 5 out of 5

    Kimberly Hendrickson

  29. 4 out of 5

    Sada Liz de Marchena

  30. 4 out of 5

    Chelsea

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.