"Sexuality? A million things come to mind": reflections on gender and sexuality by Chilean adolescents
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Although Chile is a traditionally conservative country, considerable legal advances in sexual and reproductive rights over the past decade have brought discourses on sexuality into mainstream political, social and media agendas. In light of these changes it is important to explore how adolescents conceptualize sexuality, which in turn influences their understanding of sexual rights. This study is based on four focus group discussions and 20 semi-structured interviews with adolescents, and seven interviews with key informants in Santiago, Chile. Findings indicate that adolescent conceptualizations of sexuality are diverse, often expressed as attitudes or observations of their social context, and primarily shaped by peers, parents and teachers. Attitudes towards individuals with non-heterosexual orientations ranged from support to rejection, and conceptualizations of sexual diversity were also influenced by media, medicalization and biological explanations. Gender differences in sexual expression were described through gendered language and behaviour, in particular observations of gender stereotypes, censored female sexuality and discourses highlighting female risk. Many adolescents described social change towards greater equality regarding gender and sexuality. To optimize this change and help bridge the gap between legal and social recognition of sexual rights, adolescents should be encouraged to reflect critically on issues of gender equality and sexual diversity in Chile.
Artículo de publicación ISI
DOI: DOI: 10.1016/j.rhm.2015.11.003
Quote ItemReproductive Health Matters 2015;23(46):85–95
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