William & Mary

Behind Closed Doors

hookupOur CAP addressed campus hook-up culture, the casual sexual interactions between individuals in college, through the implementation of a forum on campus hook-up culture. The hook-up culture is an important topic because of its increasing prevalence on campuses across the nation. And, not only that, because of its sexual nature, the hook-up culture has many different benefits, risks, and consequences that are not always addressed in as nuanced a setting as they should be. Sexual encounters themselves involve many different shades and, people naturally have different perspectives of what sexual encounters should be like. Therefore, a hook-up inherently has several different meanings. 

Because this is a Women’s Studies course, a course that focuses on embracing multiplicity and creating equality of all peoples, Behind Closed Doors felt it extremely pertinent to address the hook-up culture in a more nuanced fashion. Behind Closed Doors focused on the elimination of hegemonic views on gender and sexuality through discourse on the hook-up culture. Instead of making judgements that were solely based on opinion, the Behind Closed Doors forum acted as a way to create conversation about a topic that is naturally controversial. Creating conversation in the form of a forum allows all people of different backgrounds to offer their opinions on the hook-up culture. Hearing different responses to the discussion was important for group members to learn as well as the actual students who took part in the forum. It is hoped that the forum acted as a way to create new perspectives for students. The forum was a tool for learning, not a class where a teacher instructed people on what to do. And, not only did the group members of Behind Closed Doors not want the forum to become a place that judged, but the group members did not want to act as a sexual education course. The forum was not a sexual education course, but rather a place to begin conversation on a topic that is usually associated with high-risk behavior. Hook-ups do occur and people will make decisions to do whatever they want.