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ERIC Number: EJ831036
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006-Nov
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 38
ISSN: ISSN-1468-1811
Acknowledging the Gap between Sex Education and the Lived Experiences of Young People: A Discussion of Paula Rego's "The Pillowman" (2004) and Other Cautionary Tales
Addison, Nicholas
Sex Education: Sexuality, Society and Learning, v6 n4 p351-365 Nov 2006
In this paper I consider the ways that the instrumental and cautionary profile of sex and relationship education is used to regulate the sexuality of young people in the United Kingdom. This regulation is partly a counter to the commodification of sex in the mass media but also a means to reinforce the social and cultural norms that are performed within the binary structure of gender identities as exemplified by the nuclear family. I offer an alternative strategy where works of art become the locus for a discussion of young people's concerns about sexuality. With reference to the recent work of Paula Rego, I examine the imaginary and symbolic space afforded works of art to demonstrate how interpretation can provide insights into the workings of desire, and the way such interpretative acts might enable young people to discuss eroticism. I argue that because this ambiguous space provides a certain distance, sexual norms can be questioned without either the prurient/censorial attitudes of the tabloid press or the clinical/moralising agendas of pedagogic discourse. In other words, within the discursive/hermeneutic space engendered by works of art, young people are able to bypass those instrumental discourses that are unhelpful in the formation of sexual well-being. (Contains 1 figure.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom