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Children, Sexuality, and the Law$
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Sacha M. Coupet and Ellen Marrus

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780814723852

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814723852.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM NYU Press SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.nyu.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of NYU Press Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NYSO for personal use.date: 25 February 2021

Smells Like Teen Spirit

Smells Like Teen Spirit

The Conundrum of Kids, Sex, and the Law

(p.6) 1 Smells Like Teen Spirit
Children, Sexuality, and the Law

Paul R. Abramson

Annaka Abramson

NYU Press

This chapter examines psychological theory and research pertaining to children as sexual beings. Childhood sexuality encompasses many issues; self-exploration, biological development, evolutionary psychology, the cultural processes through which kids learn about sex, the cognitions that determine how kids operate sexually, and so forth. The unifying theme throughout this discussion is the recognition of sexual pleasure as the primary reason that humans of all ages engage in some form of sex. The real question, then, is whether the capacity for intense sexual pleasure serves as an entitlement to fundamental sexual rights for kids. The chapter concludes that sexual rights for children must correspond with the onset and psychological significance of pleasure.

Keywords:   childhood sexuality, self-exploration, sexual pleasure, sexual rights

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