Sex and the University
Celebrity, Controversy, and a Student Journalism Revolution
Publication Year: 2010
Published by: Rutgers University Press
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I have been passionate about college journalism since high school. As a junior and senior, I treasured the visits I made with my father to campuses through-out Greater Philadelphia and beyond. There is simply something about a lively college campus that puts a smile on my face and a giddyup in my heart-beat. Some students on a college tour seek out the main academic buildings, ...
1. Sex, Sex, SEX! The Explosion of Sexual Expression in the Student Press
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Sex has “mesmerized, titillated, and amused” Glory Fink since she was a little girl, even before she knew what the word meant. In second grade, she fell in love for the first time, setting her sights on a classmate. “He was sweet but shy,” she recalled. “I wanted him to notice me, but he didn’t. One lunch period in a fit of frustration, I said very loudly to him, ‘Chad, if ...
2. Sexual, Revolutionary: The Pioneering College Newspaper Sex Column
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The most well-known sex column in a college newspaper was conceived amid a political uproar that had nothing to do with sex or the column at all. On November 3, 1996, after engaging in “a very heated discussion,” the eleven-member editorial board of the Daily Californian, the independent student newspaper at the University of California, Berkeley, voted six to five in favor of running a staff editorial...
3. Carrie Bradshaw of the Ivy League: The Celebrity of Sex Columnist Natalie Krinsky
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Itzhak Krinsky, the managing director of a leading Manhattan investment banking firm, received an e-mail from a younger co-worker in December 2001. The message began with the words, “You should read this—it’s hysterical.” It included the text of a recently published college newspaper sex column detailing the finer points of fellatio (oral sex performed on a man). It was provocatively...
4. Kate Has Become Sex: The Impact of Sex Columns on Students’ Personal Lives
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In fall 2003, Kate Prengaman became “Sex.” She earned the nickname on the Ultimate Frisbee field, where participants often receive names based on a defining interest or characteristic. Prengaman’s teammates began calling her “Sex” during her freshman year at the College of William & Mary, not long after the debut of “Behind Closed Doors,” her weekly sex column in the Flat Hat student newspaper. “Nicknames...
5. Love, Lust, and Every Kink In Between: The Columns Tackle Modern Students’ Social and Sexual Lives
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In spring 2004, Kaya Anderson Payne became a “new-age hippie,” a “detriment to society,” and, conversely, “a legend in the student press.” She started as the “Sex Geek,” a columnist for the Muse, the campus newspaper at Canada’s Memorial University of Newfoundland. During her tenure, Payne wrote about sexual positions, birth control, and STI prevention. “I didn’t really expect people to notice the columns...
6. Clash of Cultures: Outside Criticism and Censorship of Student Sex Columns
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In fall 2003, the Mustang Daily at California Polytechnic State University launched “Battle of the Sex Columnists.” The feature had the flavor of a mini American Idol, with a sexual twist. Two sex columns were run side by side, along with a prompt from the newspaper asking readers to select their favorite student sex writer and e-mail editors with a vote. One of the columns published in the...
7. Playboy for the College Set: The Rise and Influence of Campus Sex Magazines
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Alecia Oleyourryk sat naked on a barstool. The continual click of a camera sounded around her. A photo shoot focused on her had just begun. She flipped through a copy of the first issue of Boink, the student sex magazine she started during her senior year in college. She looked into a nearby video camera recording the shoot. “I’m a Boston University student,” she said with a smile. She flashed...
8. My College Paper Was Not Like That! The Journalistic Legacy of the Student Sex Column
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McLean Robbins wanted student readers to know one thing during the two years she wrote the “She Said” sex column for the Old Gold & Black at Wake Forest University: She had no interest in their genital warts, venereal diseases (VD), or erectile dysfunction (ED). “There was this whole vibe out there that I was supposed to be an expert, a sexpert of some sort,” she said. “You know, that I could identify on...
9. A Student Sexicon: Sexual Slang in College Newspaper Sex Columns
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Th e media have long held a prominent position in not only defining and normalizing different facets of sex and courtship, but also in creating and challenging the words used to identify them. Since the start of the sexual reform press in the 1870s, the media have been the principal catalysts behind the expansion of the country’s sexual lexicon, or what Harvard Independent sex columnist...
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About the Author
DANIEL REIMOLD, PH.D., is a journalism scholar who has published and presented research on college media throughout the United States and in Southeast Asia. He has taught journalism, mass communication, and new media courses at four universities in two countries. He currently serves as an assistant professor of journalism at the University of Tampa, where he also advises the Minaret student...
Page Count: 240
Publication Year: 2010