Puberty in Crisis: The Sociology of Early Sexual Development

Puberty in Crisis: The Sociology of Early Sexual Development

by Celia Roberts


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Puberty has long been recognised as a difficult and upsetting process for individuals and families, but it is now also being widely described as in crisis. Reportedly occurring earlier and earlier as each decade of the twenty-first century passes, sexual development now heralds new forms of temporal trouble in which sexuality, sex/gender and reproduction are all at stake. Many believe that children are growing up too fast and becoming sexual too early. Clinicians, parents and teachers all demand something must be done. Does this out-of-time development indicate that children's futures are at risk or that we are entering a new era of environmental and social perturbation? Engaging with a diverse range of contemporary feminist and social theories on the body, biology and sex, Celia Roberts urges us to refuse a discourse of crisis and to rethink puberty as a combination of biological, psychological and social forces.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781107104723
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 08/07/2015
Pages: 300
Product dimensions: 6.30(w) x 9.33(h) x 0.94(d)

About the Author

Celia Roberts is Senior Lecturer and Co-Director of the Centre for Gender and Women's Studies in the Department of Sociology at Lancaster University. She is a long-standing editor of the journal Feminist Theory and author of Messengers of Sex: Hormones, Biomedicine and Feminism (Cambridge University Press, 2007).

Table of Contents

1. Puberty in crisis? Sex, reproduction and the loss of future; 2. Articulating findings, feelings and figurations: methods and approaches; 3. Telling histories: the scientific study of puberty; 4. Defining early onset puberty: troubling findings about sexual development; 5. Causes and explanations: genes, fat, toxins and families; 6. Consequences of early development: sex, drugs and shortness; 7. Treatments: pharmaceuticals, sex and suffering; Conclusion: folding puberty differently: changing findings, feeling and figurations.

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