Raffaella Ferrero Camoletto

From Respectability to Authenticity? Redefining the Meaning of Verginity among Youth

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: young people, gender, sexuality, virginity, double standard

The article aims at exploring changes in young Italians' sexual cultures, focusing on attitudes and behaviours concerning first sexual experiences and what is socially accounted for as «virginity loss». Based on quantitative and qualitative data from a study carried out in 2006 - involving a quota sample survey of 1,000 young people representative of the population of 18/29-year-olds and residing in the Piedmont region and 51 biographical interviews with 18/34-year-olds, the article shows how the exploration of the theme of virginity provides a perspective for analysing the ways in which Italian young people construct the meaning of their first sexual experiences and combine conformity, negotiation and resistance in terms of both traditional conceptions of sexuality and visions of masculinity and femininity.

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