Sex Roles

, Volume 50, Issue 7, pp 505-514

First online:

Sex and Punishment: An Examination of Sexual Consequences and the Sexual Double Standard in Teen Programming

  • Jennifer Stevens AubreyAffiliated withDepartment of Communication Studies, The University of Michigan

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A content analysis was conducted to examine sexual consequences on teen programming. The sample consisted of prime-time television dramas that featured characters between the ages of 12 and 22 years. Two major goals guided the study. First, the types of sexual consequences in teen programming were investigated. Results showed that emotional and social consequences far outnumbered physical consequences. Second, the portrayal of the sexual double standard was investigated. Negative consequences were more common in scenes in which female characters initiated sexual activities than in scenes in which male characters initiated sexual activities. Implications for future content analyses and media-effects research are discussed.

sex adolescents television sexual stereotypes content analysis