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Laughing to sexual education: feminist pedagogy of laughter as a model for holistic sex-education

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This paper describes and analyses the ‘feminist pedagogy of laughter’ deployed in an original sex education presentation for college students, entitled Sexual Pleasure, Health, and Safety (SPHS). This work seeks to advance scholarship on liberatory education and humour in education by emphasising how we can use laughter to casually and joyfully deconstruct sexism, racism and heterosexism as they concern sexual stigma, violence, health and pleasure. This style of pedagogy also defuses discomfort around stigmatised topics and identities, disrupts oppressive norms about sex and bodies, and builds communities that enhance learning. We position the feminist pedagogy of laughter as a technique that may be replicated to empower participants to pursue sexual pleasure and wellbeing despite sexist, racist and heterosexist obstacles. Educators may apply the feminist pedagogy of laughter to create sex education lessons and curricula that participants can enjoy, learn from and apply in real life. The pedagogy may be especially useful in supporting high-impact lessons within the time constraints of university life.
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Keywords: LGBTQIA; Laughter; education; pedagogy; sexuality

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, USA

Publication date: September 3, 2019

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