Virginity Lost: An Intimate Portrait of First Sexual Experiences

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NYU Press, Nov 1, 2005 - Health & Fitness - 295 pages
16 Reviews

Nervous, inexperienced, confused. For most, losing your virginity is one of life's most significant moments, always to be remembered. Of course, experiences vary, but Laura Carpenter asks: Is there an ideal way to lose it? What would constitute a “positive” experience? What often compels the big step? And, further, what does “going all the way” really mean for young gays and lesbians?

In this first comprehensive study of virginity loss, Carpenter teases out the complexities of all things virgin by drawing on interviews with both young men and women who are straight, gay or bisexual. Virginity Lost offers a rare window into one of life's most intimate and significant sexual moments. The stories here are frank, poignant and fascinating as Carpenter presents an array of experiences that run the gamut from triumphant to devastating.

 

Importantly, Carpenter argues that one's experience of virginity loss can have a powerful impact on one's later sexual experiences. Especially at a time of increased debate about sexual abstinence versus safe sex education in public schools, this important volume will provide essential information about the sex lives of young people.

 

 

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Review: Virginity Lost: An Intimate Portrait of First Sexual Experiences

User Review  - Goodreads

While Virginity Loss is a phenomenon that has gone unexplored for too long, this work does not do enough to explore the phenomenon. I found the gaps in Carpenter's analysis problematic and the lack of nuance in the analysis troubling. I would have liked to read more anecdotes from the participants. Read full review

Review: Virginity Lost: An Intimate Portrait of First Sexual Experiences

User Review  - Rebecca - Goodreads

While Virginity Loss is a phenomenon that has gone unexplored for too long, this work does not do enough to explore the phenomenon. I found the gaps in Carpenter's analysis problematic and the lack of nuance in the analysis troubling. I would have liked to read more anecdotes from the participants. Read full review

Contents

Defining Virginity Loss Today
44
A Gift of Ones Own
57
An Unendurable Stigma
101
A Natural Step
141
Abstinence
178
Virginity Lost
194
Methodological Appendix
209
Age Sexual Race Social
212
Where Current Family Status Interp Current
213
Age Sexual Race Social
214
Where Current Family Status Interp Current
215
Notes
217
Bibliography
255
Copyright

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About the author (2005)

Laura M. Carpenter is Associate Professor of Sociology at Vanderbilt University and author of Virginity Lost: An Intimate Portrait of First Sexual Experiences.

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