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It's OK for Teen Fiction to Address (Gasp) Sex

It can be healthy, safe way to explore sexuality: Tracy Clark-Flory
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 30, 2011 5:08 PM CDT

(Newser) – A new study about teen fiction raises a familiar alarm bell: The books have too much sex. Roughly half of young-adult titles have some kind of racy content, which runs the gamut from kissing to intercourse, warns the study from Brigham Young University. Oh, please, writes Tracy Clark-Flory at Salon. "These books aren't a replacement for sex-ed but rather a way to begin exploring what it means to be a sexual being," she writes. "Kids get to vicariously try on different roles in the safest way possible."

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The books also reflect reality: Today's teens have sex, and books that address the subject can help kids deal with it better. "I wish I had found books as a teen that fully celebrated healthy sexuality—but, well, I also wish I lived in a culture without massive sex guilt," writes Clark-Flory. "But I doubt that unease over the sexiness of the genre has to do with the way sex is presented, as opposed to the fact that it is presented at all." Click for the full column. (Read more sex education stories.)

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