Sexualities over the Life Course: The Development of a Perspective
This introductory chapter discusses the importance of studying human sexuality from a life course perspective. Until recently, theory, research, and public policy discussions on sexual topics have tended to focus on childhood, adolescence, young adulthood, or adulthood. With some reflection, however, one realizes that what happens in adulthood is not unrelated to what took place in adolescence or even childhood. Thus, there is a need for serious exploration of how events at one stage in life affect sexual attitudes, behavior, and relationships at other, later stages. Another contribution to be made by the life course theory is the development of transdisciplinary perspectives, incorporating biological, psychological, social, and cultural dimensions; these are often referred to as biopsychosocial models.
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