Human Sexuality (Section 1)

Discipline: Sociology
Instructor: Parrot
Credits: 3
Day: C
Start: 1640
End: 1755
Field Work: Day 1 - Thursday, 10 July | Ireland
Prerequisites: A sociology, psychology, or public health introductory course. Download Syllabus

Students will explore human sexuality from a cross-cultural perspective. Particular emphasis will be placed on the United States, as well as the countries we will be visiting, although discussion of sexual approaches in other parts of the world will also be discussed. Topics to be covered include: policies, laws, religion & sexuality, rites of passage, marriage practices, violence against women, family structure, anatomy, physiology, sexual health care, sexual orientation, sexual response, intimate relationships, abortion & contraceptive availability, and sexual practices of specific sub-populations. Methods of evaluation consist of three tests, one oral report of course related field experiences, and one paper on some country specific aspect of human sexuality related to the course material, class participation and attendance. Suggested pre-requisite: an introductory course in sociology, psychology, or public health.

Field Work

Country: Ireland
Day: 1 - Thursday, 10 July

We will meet with two NGOs providing sexual services in Dublin:  Irish Family Planning Association and Gay Men’s Health Service.  The Catholic Church has had a very strong and long influence on sexual attitudes and access to sexually related services in Ireland.  We will explore both the legacy of the Catholic  Church regarding sex outside of marriage (including the Magdalene's Laundries), and what services are available now.  We will also explore ways in which these attitudes are changing. 

  1. Understand the role of the Catholic Church in forming Irish attitudes toward sexual issues and behaviors.
  2. Determine the controversies, legal issues, and realities faced by Irish people regarding sexual orientation and  sexual identity.
  3. Explore access to contraceptives, abortion, and other sexual health services for people in Ireland, both married and unmarried.