Great Sexpectations: an examination of female adolescents’ perspectives about pornography and sexual health education

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AoifeOCarrollCARLReport2022.pdf(1.16 MB)
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O’Carroll, Aoife
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Community-Academic Research Links, University College Cork
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This research was a community-based participatory project involving University College Cork, Community Active Research Links Project (CARL) and The Sexual Health Centre Cork. The research looks at the impact of pornography from the perspective of adolescent females and how it affects young people. Furthermore, it examines the ways in which young people receive information about sex, especially education relating to pornography. Primary research was carried out by means of individual interviews. The epistemological positioning applied to this research is critical feminist theory with social constructivism to determine the lived experiences of women in society in relation to pornography. Participants for the research were recruited by the Sexual Health Centre with the criteria being female, aged between 17 and 19. Four participants took part in the interviews to ascertain theirs views on the impact of pornography was for young people, in particular females, and what their experiences of sex education is like. The participants were presented with a draft edition of an educational resource that included information about pornography- the risks, impacts and supports available and were asked to give feedback on it. The qualitative data collected was analysed using thematic analysis. The themes that emerged are: The Stigma of Female Sexuality, The Expectations, Consent and Education The study concluded that females’ adolescents are impacted by pornography and that there is a lack of education on the subject available to young people. The participants were very complimentary of the educational tool presented to them and recommended that this be rolled out for educational purposes. In the final chapter, concluding remarks and recommendations are provided for future endeavours.
Female adolescents , Sexual health education , Pornography , Consent
O’Carroll, A. (2022) Great Sexpectations: an examination of female adolescents’ perspectives about pornography and sexual health education. Cork: Community-Academic Research Links, University College Cork.
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©2022, Aoife O’Carroll.