Title Page, Copyright, Dedication

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pp. i-vi

Contents

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pp. vii-viii

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Acknowledgments

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pp. ix-x

Books are never written alone. This book was made possible by generous support from Butler University, including internal grants from the Butler Awards Committee; the Gender, Women’s, and Sexuality Studies Program; the College of Communication; and the Department of Critical Communication and Media...

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Introduction: The Cinema of Abstinence

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pp. 1-23

At the beginning of the 2000s, the election of President George W. Bush appeared to validate the cultural agenda of an evangelical Christian movement concerned with promulgating heterosexuality, traditional family values, and abstinence until marriage.1 The new administration’s focus on premarital...

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1. Melodrama and Postfeminist Abstinence. The Twilight Saga (2008–2012)

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pp. 24-53

In Our Vampires, Ourselves, Nina Auerbach writes that “every age embraces the vampire it needs.”1 In other words, vampires are protean figures who—from Gothic literature to contemporary film and television—are continually remolded to reflect the fears and desires of a particular age. Banished from the daytime, forced...

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2. Man-­Boys and Born-­Again Virgins: The 40-Year- Old Virgin (2005)

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pp. 54-75

Late at night after work, four men sit around a poker table drinking beer and swapping stories of sexual conquest and raunchy adventures. The group goads Andy, a self-professed “gentleman” who does not “kiss and tell,” to share “the nastiest shit you’ve ever done.” As he struggles to contrive a story perverse...

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3. Monstrous Girls and Absentee Fathers: The Possession (2012)

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pp. 76-91

The abstinence-until- marriage movement traffics in images of absentee fathers and young girls in crisis. For instance, Randy Wilson of the Family Research Council writes, “There is a lost generation of girls out there that has resulted primarily from the absence of committed fathers. Many men are uninvolved and disengaged...

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4. Abstinence, the Global Sex Industry, and Racial Violence: Taken (2008)

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pp. 92-107

In the 2008 film Taken, retired CIA agent Bryan Mills (Liam Neeson) uses his espionage and counterterrorism training to rescue his teenage daughter Kim (Maggie Grace) from a French-Albanian crime syndicate that abducts, drugs, and sells young white women into forced prostitution. Rather than wait for the...

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5. Sexploitation in Abstinence Satires

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pp. 108-127

From depictions of car cruises in the 1950s to the ubiquitous portrayals of shopping malls in the 1980s, teen cinema exploits the protean desires of youth that wax and wane over time.1 Hollywood perpetually gauges social trends and repackages them as authentic expressions of youth culture. When the trend stagnates...

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Conclusion: Counternarratives

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pp. 128-142

In 2002 and 2003, fourteen-year- old Elizabeth Smart was abducted and held captive for nine months, during which she was repeatedly raped and physically abused. During a 2013 human trafficking forum at Johns Hopkins University, Smart explained that while she had several opportunities to escape, she chose not to do so. In part, Smart...

Notes

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pp. 143-166

Filmography

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pp. 167-176

Bibliography

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pp. 177-192

Index

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pp. 193-196

About the Author

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pp. 197-198