Critically Sex/Ed: Asking Critical Questions of Neoliberal Truths in Sexuality Education

  • Laina Y. Bay-Cheng


In this chapter, I argue that conventional sexuality education typically misdiagnoses social injustice as “sexual risk.” I propose an alternative model, one that engages youth in critical analysis of the interplay between sexual well-being and social conditions. Founded on the original tenets of empowerment theory and practice, critical sexuality education counters the depoliticized and divisive rhetoric that typifies sexuality education. Rather than instruct students in “right choices” and “responsible behaviors,” critical sexuality education reverses perspective so that it is not youth that are scrutinized and targeted for intervention but the unjust social and material circumstances of their lives, instead. To illustrate this recommendation, I offer three sample lesson plans, each of which pose critical questions of what commonly goes unquestioned in sexuality education discourse.


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Authors and Affiliations

  • Laina Y. Bay-Cheng
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Social WorkUniversity at BuffaloBuffaloUSA

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