‘Hooking Up & Hanging Out’
Women’s workshop focuses on sexual encounters on college campuses, gender roles, rape culture
Published: Friday, March 1, 2013
Updated: Friday, March 1, 2013 09:03
Samantha Sciarrillo, a graduate student who works in the counseling center, organized “Hooking Up & Hanging Out: Sexual Encounters in College,” which took place Thursday at the Center for Health and Well-Being. The program sought to educate women about sexual encounters that often affect women in college.
“I’m expecting a lot of awkward silences,” Kayla Ihrig (sophomore, art)said. “I didn’t learn a lot about sex-ed in high school. I think a lot of things have changed.”
Yet it was anything but awkward silences at the workshop.
Sciarrillo and the group of women discussed the history of dating and the types of sexual encounters and situations.
A big part of the discussion focused on gender roles, the sexual double standard and sexual objectification in society today.
“A double standard endorses different expectations for women and men,” Sciarrillo said. “In traditional gender roles, men have a naturally high sex drive and women tend to be less sexual. This promotes men’s sexual behavior and restricts women’s.”
Sciarrillo addressed the difficulty in thinking about gender roles differently.
“It’s hard to think of because it’s so engrained [in our minds],” she said.
Slang terms like “slut bashing” and the “walk of shame” were addressed in relation to the sexual double standard.
According to the discussion, “slut bashing” is a word used to explain the negative thought connected to a promiscuous woman or a woman thought of as promiscuous. “Walk of shame” is a slang term used for the walk home in the morning after sleeping over at someone’s house or dorm (whether there was a sexual encounter or not).
“We get a message that we should be dressing sexy, but when we do that people have a problem with it,” Sciarrillo said.
“It’s definitely important to learn where we get these negative feelings towards sex,” Leah Barbera (senior, psychology) said.
Sciarrillo spoke about the sexual objectification of women and the “rape culture” of society. “Rape culture” describes the ideas about rape being okay that are often enforced in society ranging from “because she is a slut” to the consumption of alcohol.
“The discussion wasn’t anything I had expected,” Amanda Parker (sophomore, biology) said. “I thought it was going to be more about the anatomy of sex, but I’m very pleased with the discussion. Everything we talked about was very valuable knowledge.”
“Look around on campus and think about the things we talked about,” Sciarrillo said. “See what you notice. You may be very surprised.”