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Title: A sociological analysis of the sexual learning processes and practices of heterosexual young women in Northeast Brazil
Author: Day, Natalie Louise
ISNI:       0000 0004 6352 4725
Awarding Body: Newcastle University
Current Institution: University of Newcastle upon Tyne
Date of Award: 2016
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The Brazilian Parâmetros Curriculares Nacionais, introduced in 1996, recommend the coverage of sex education within all disciplines, throughout a young person’s education. However, implementation is often inconsistent, teachers frequently lack training and resources, and content continues to be largely biological. This research investigates this apparent “gap” between ostensibly progressive sex education policy, and the realities of young women’s sex education experiences. It focuses on how young women in Lençóis, Bahia, Northeast Brazil understand the role of the State in their sexual learning processes, and how State-sanctioned sex education interacts with local sexual culture and informal sex education practices in their everyday lives. This research contributes a semi-rural, interior study, based on young women’s experiences, to the literature on sex education in Brazil, which has predominantly centred on urban, coastal young people’s lives, and included young people’s perspectives only infrequently. The thesis prioritises local sexual culture in the study of sex education, and promotes an understanding of the State as active at the level of the everyday. Qualitative, semi-structured interviews were conducted with twenty-seven women aged 18–29, and contextualised with additional material. Findings indicated that lençoense sex education lacked uniformity, was viewed largely negatively, and seen as a localised process, mostly dependent on individual teachers. State-sanctioned sex education provided powerful messages of risk and risk-reduction, responsibility and respectability, while other important themes were identified as “missing”. Participants often looked to “informal” sources to plug the gaps left by insufficient State-sanctioned sex education, and the enduring taboo of the topic in many lençoense homes.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: ESRC
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available