What’s Sex Got to Do With…Degrassi: The Next Generation?

Degrassi: The Next Generation is a television show that deals with the issues that teenagers face on a daily basis and portrays these issues to help teenagers understand that they are not alone. The show  includes issues of; eating disorders, rape, bullying, depression, suicide, and self insecurities. The show is still on air, but its’ first season began in 2001, and was one of the first serious teenage dramas that really exuded the seriousness of the issues that are present in middle and high schools. I began watching this show at a young age and looking back on it now, it really shaped my understanding of school and the people around me. In one episode, a girl was raped at a party after she was drinking for awhile. The episode showed what had happened when she was raped, as well as the affects it had on her for the remainder of the season. A lot of what I saw in that episode is a lot of what we have discussed in class. Paige (the character that was raped) needed a lot of the resources that we have on campus, here at Vanderbilt. ProjectSafe would have been a perfect place for her to go to, because she had a hard time with coping what had happened to her, and throughout the season she had flashbacks of her perpetrator. Comparing what had happened to her in that episode and knowing now how frequent sexual assault occurs, makes a show like this even more important. It truly shows what happens in a teenager’s life.

In class, we discussed how 80-90% of sexual assaults are perpetrated by an acquaintance, and most sexual assaults are perpetrated by repeat-offenders. Knowing this information is crucial in the safety of women on campuses, whether it’s in college, high school, or middle school. Having more shows like Degrassi, helps exemplify the importance of knowing about sexual violence, and even more important to have resources to help deal with this violence. What do you think? Do you think there should be more shows that portray the reality of sexual violence and college life? Or do you think it is inappropriate for viewers?

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What’s Sex Got to Do With…Friends?

Friends, is one of the most played and replayed shows on TV and has some of America’s most loved characters. But what makes it so loved by everyone? It is because of how relatable the characters can be. The characters on Friends struggle with finding jobs, balancing relationships, and making money. They are a representation of life after college and being able to balance everything that comes your way. They exemplify the struggles that many young adults face in everyday life. Jennifer Aniston’s character, Rachel Green, faces the complications of relationships because she had just fled her wedding and soon-to-be husband. She left him at the altar and pursued her single status once she moved in with Monica (Rachel’s best friend on the show). Rachel faced many challenges when she became single and it began when she started dating. Rachel, Monica, and Phoebe all slept with many of the men that they went on dates with, whether it was the first date or fifth.

The characters on Friends defy some of Kathleen A. Bogle’s points in her book Hooking Up by defying the sexual double standard. Phoebe, Monica, and Rachel feel free to sleep with whoever they want and their “promiscuity” is never called into question. This comes as part of the post-college life for these women because there are not classmates or the college campus to judge them of their acts. They have no outside influence determining their actions. The men in the show; Ross, Joey, and Chandler also sleep with many girls on the show. Neither gender comments on this because their sexual acts do not impact them in any way. Each gender accepts each other, so, Bogle’s double standard is not found to be the case on the show Friends. What do you think? Do you see Bogle’s double standard, or do you think the characters completely disregard it?

 

Does It even Help {{Gay Marriage}}

We all know, at one point in our lives-or for some, currently- how fun it is to be a “rebel”. Teenagers seem to be professional rebels. During this stage of ones life, it seems like everything you want to do, suddenly becomes what your parents are against.
Does this change? Maybe not.
Today, commercial advertisements are targeting gay people of all ages. Anti-gay advertisements are being publicly broadcasted in hope of stopping homosexuality.
The big question is, Does this even Work?

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