Displaying items 1 - 15 of 26 in total
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    Better Sex And More Equal Relationships: Couple Training In Nigeria

    In Nigeria, within marriage, women are expected to pleasure their husbands, and preparation for marriage focuses on teaching the girl how to do so. In contrast, non-married women were expected to enjoy sex with their boyfriends. Yet, what emerged from research by Aken’Ova’s organisation INCRESE (The International Centre for Reproductive Health and Rights) was women’s deep lack of sexual pleasure in their relationships, married or not. Some men mistakenly believed they were giving great pleasure to their lovers, and had not discovered the truth due to lack of communication. …

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    Beyond 2015: Pathways to a Gender Just World

    On the 29-30 May 2014 a group of feminist scholars, activists, and media and communications professionals met at the Institute of Development Studies at the University of Sussex to celebrate and interrogate learning from the Pathways of Women’s Empowerment Consortium (Pathways). This was an opportunity to look at the trajectory that the consortium had taken since its early days in 2005, consider how Pathways research could shape the post-2015 development agenda, and strategise about future directions in work on women’s empowerment. …

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    Building A Movement For Sexual Rights And Pleasure

    The Chinese NGO Pink Space organises exchanges to build solidarity between people marginalised because of their sexuality and challenge the sources of their oppression, as He explains. Pink Space brings together HIV positive women, lesbians, bisexual women, female sex workers, transgender men, and women married to gay men. Fun, laughter and discussions of sexual pleasure are always part of the agenda. He describes how a focus on sexual pleasure promoted solidarity between women. …

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    Challenging Clitoraid

    This chapter uses rhetorical analysis to analyse the Clitoraid campaign, an American initiative started by the believers of the Raelian religion that set out to raise funds to build a ‘pleasure hospital’ in Burkina Faso that would perform operations to ‘restore’ the capacity of excised women for clitoral orgasm. …

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    Challenging The Pleasure Versus Danger Binary: Reflections On Sexuality Workshops With Rural Women's Rights Activists In North India

    In this chapter, Sharma writes about a workshop programme by her organisation, Nirantar, aimed at building perspectives on sexuality in a manner that was both positive and political. The programme constitutes one of the first efforts in the Indian context to do this, with women from rural, poor communities as well as the organisations that work with them, in an intensive manner. …

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    Could Watching Porn Increase Our Expectations Of (Safe) Pleasure? An Exploration Of Some Promising Harm Reduction Practices

    This chapter explores how pornography can eroticize safer and less gender normative sex. The authors point out that pornography is a huge industry, and one of the most important sources of information on sexuality for young people in many countries. They discuss the prevalence and importance of porn as a conduit for sex education before describing ways in which the pleasure industry is challenging norms to create pornography that is positive. They advocate a harm-reduction approach where the harm is not ended, but its negative effects are mitigated, and cite examples of porn that erotizes safer sex with actors using female and male condoms. …

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    Desires Denied: Sexual Pleasure In The Context Of HIV

    Writing as a woman living with HIV, Alice Welbourn focuses on the forced asexuality that is often foisted on women when they are diagnosed with HIV. She argues that a focus on sexual rights and pleasure can enhance our analysis of the ways in which legal, religious and medical discourses can reinforce fear of women’s unfettered sexuality. Welbourn’s chapter offers a poignant reminder of the extent to which HIV positive women experience the pain of forced retirement from sexual pleasure. Welbourn describes how positive women’s pleasurable sexual experiences are constrained by the grief of a positive diagnosis; like trauma or rape, she argues, this can lead to forced asexuality which denies women their rights to their own autonomy with regard to their sexual and reproductive pleasure. …

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    Enabling Disabled People To Have And Enjoy The Kind Of Sexuality They Want

    For people with disabilities in the UK, Lorna Couldrick and Alex Cowan’s chapter shows, the situation is in many ways similar to women living with HIV: there is a presumption that people with disabilities are, or ought to be, asexual and little open recognition of their sexual needs and desires. Couldrick and Cowan point out that this lack of acknowledgement of the role of sex and sexuality in the lives of people with disabilities can be exacerbated by health and social care practices, arguing that, ‘the very delivery of health and social care may undermine the sexual health of disabled people and perpetuate the myth that if you are disabled, intimacy and sex no longer matters. ’ This chapter begins with a little information on the context of the authors’ experiences which underpin their positions. Then, after defining sexuality and sexual health, they explore why any discussion of disability and sexuality must encompass intimate relationships and sexual pleasure and not be limited to sexual dysfunction. …

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    Eroticism, Sensuality And 'Women's Secrets' Among The Baganda

    Sylvia Tamale describes how women have become subject to moralism, shame and sex negativity. Tamale explores how the institution of Ssenga among the Banda in Uganda, has endured and changed. Formerly an education by aunts for nieces on how to become good wives and pleasure husbands, it is now as often a commercial service for better sex and relationships. Both earlier and current versions of Ssenga largely focus on conformist scripts, privileging men’s pleasure over women’s. …

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    How Was It For You? Pleasure And Performance In Sex Work

    This chapter challenges the assumption that sex workers get no pleasure from their work, citing research in several locations including India, China, Spain and Finland. This research demonstrates that placing sex workers’ experience of pleasure at the forefront can provide a fresh angle on familiar arguments. This is particularly important in the study of sex work, where ideological conflict and political necessity have tended to harden into fixed positions and inflexible ways of thinking. This chapter follows the lead provided by sex workers themselves in taking pleasure seriously. …

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    Introduction: Women, Sexuality And The Political Power of Pleasure

    This introduction introduces the debates on sexuality in the global north, and focuses on the debates around sexuality and pleasure occurring in the south that are starting to break the silence on the positive and empowering dimensions of women’s sexuality. Although there is much debate on the theoretical aspects of women’s sexuality, there is little debate on the policy implications of these debates, or documentation of practical initiatives on empowerment through positive approaches to sexuality. The authors note that, in discussions of sexuality, there is no focus on enjoyment, only on the dangerous aspects of sexuality. Development discourse associates sex with hazard and harm, and ndoes not talk about what might be positive, pleasurable or empowering about sexuality. …

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    Introduction: Women, Sexuality And The Political Power of Pleasure

    This introduction introduces the debates on sexuality in the global north, and focuses on the debates around sexuality and pleasure occurring in the south that are starting to break the silence on the positive and empowering dimensions of women’s sexuality. Although there is much debate on the theoretical aspects of women’s sexuality, there is little debate on the policy implications of these debates, or documentation of practical initiatives on empowerment through positive approaches to sexuality. The authors note that, in discussions of sexuality, there is no focus on enjoyment, only on the dangerous aspects of sexuality. Development discourse associates sex with hazard and harm, and ndoes not talk about what might be positive, pleasurable or empowering about sexuality. …

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    Laughter, The Subversive Body Organ

    Ana Francis Mor describes how laughter, brought on by cabaret theatre in health workshops in Mexico, was key to changing people, not just their minds, but their hearts and their bodies and what they do with them. Mor describes how women learn gender ideologies from the television soap operas, all-pervasive in Mexico, which take their cue from Catholicism. Mor describes trainings on health run in rural Mexico for women, men and children. The three year programme trained over 30,000 people in total, in four day-long trainings that included participants first identifying key health issues in small groups, and a cabaret theatre working on these issues in the afternoon, and performing them in the evening. …

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    Sex Is A Gift From God: Paralysis And Potential In Sex Education In Malawi

    Religious organisations are often the site for some of the most negative prescriptive messages about sexuality and might seem a difficult place to raise such issues. However, there are glimmers within religious institutions of recognition of the power of pleasure. In this chapter, Bertrand-Dansereau describes how secular sexuality education interventions create even less space for discussion of pleasure than religious interventions in Malawi, and how negativity about sex and sexuality limits their effectiveness. Bertrand-Dansereau finds unexpectedly that in Malawi, church sexuality education was far more open and sex-positive than secular alternatives, which tried to motivate people to safer behaviours through fear of disease. …

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    Sexualidade e Empoderamento: Uma Conexão íntima

    What does sexuality have to do with women’s empowerment? Research from the Pathways of Women’s Empowerment RPC shows that sexuality affects women’s political and economic empowerment in a number of important ways. For example, in the ways that women experience seeking election to political office, how women are treated and respected (or disrespected) in the workplace and in public, and how families and communities place expectations on how women should behave. Being exposed to sexual harassment and sexual violence and not being able to exercise choice in their sexual relationships affects women’s well-being and ultimately undermines political, social and economic empowerment. …