Regardless of whether the freshmen’s objections are legitimate, in my own estimation, co-opting this particular controversy at Duke into a discussion of trigger warnings is to compare apples to oranges.
One Utah program makes students choose to promise to uphold several flawed statements on abstinence. I would love to believe that the students would be brave enough to challenge what’s written on the page, but just in case, I decided to explain why some of the most outrageous statements just don’t make sense.
Rather than being centered on healthy discussions of sex and relationships, these “tales of love” are more tales of women carrying the burdens of men while American viewers watch and judge.
It is doubly important that we carefully examine the sociopolitical and theological environment that allowed such abuses—and their apparent cover-up—in the first place. And we must think about the impact that this hyper-conservative Christian theology can have on survivors of this kind of abuse.
Despite some facile language about “choice” from anti-vaxxers and individual beliefs held among some of them, the reality is that the anti-vaccination movement has way more in common with those trying to restrict abortion access.
One of the most popular and prevalent examples of purity culture’s racism is the critique of the pop singer Beyoncé’s life and work by conservative white politicians and pundits, who have gone so far as to wonder aloud if Jay Z had not crossed the line from husband to exploiting “pimp,” thus reducing Beyoncé’s talent and ambition to a sexuality that is not under her control.
Ingrained in Bob Jones University’s very DNA is a belief in shame as an essentially positive thing, which manifests in its reportedly condemnatory attitude toward survivors of sexual abuse and violence.
Many self-identified evangelicals have ceremonially promised to stay virgins until marriage. But there are often few narratives available from adults who are now struggling with the purity vows they made as teenagers.
Christian masculinists spend much of their time online brutally lambasting modern men and women for not adhering to biblically based gender roles. But their arguments aren’t all that different from conservative evangelicals’.
What could have been a fascinating insight into strangers’ expressions of intimacy is instead a tableau of stereotypical sexual narratives already prevalent in mainstream media.