“We have sex, but we don’t talk about it”

Examining silences in teaching and learning about sex and sexuality in Ghana and Ethiopia

Authored by: Georgina Yaa Oduro , Esther Miedema

Routledge Handbook of Queer African Studies

Print publication date:  December  2019
Online publication date:  December  2019

Print ISBN: 9781138503472
eBook ISBN: 9781351141963
Adobe ISBN:


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Sexuality, sex, and intimate sexual relations – usually considered to be deeply private and sensitive issues – continue to attract the attention and interest of academics, policymakers, international development actors, health care workers, and educators around the world. Public health-related concerns are often stated as the primary rationale for investments made, including in the design and delivery of school-based sexuality education. While there exists a growing corpus of scholarly work examining teacher skills and comfort levels to address sexuality and sexual relations in the classroom, there is paucity of research concerning culturally inflected silences and vocabularies surrounding issues relating to these topics. In a similar fashion, many questions remain with regard to the ways in which silence and lexical choices are grounded in, and can perpetuate, gendered and sexual norms and identities.

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