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Från stork till spermabank. Sexualupplysningslitteratur för barn 1965–2014
2015 (Swedish)In: Samlaren: tidskrift för svensk litteraturvetenskaplig forskning, ISSN 0348-6133, Vol. 136, 5-37 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

From the Stork to Sperm Banks. Sex Education Books for Children 1965–2014 (Från stork till spermabank. Sexualupplysningslitteratur för barn 1965–2014)

The aim of this article is to analyze depictions of gender and sexuality in sex education books for young children published in Sweden between 1965 and 2014. After describing the general trends in the publication of sex education literature during the period, the article discusses the narrative address and family structures, gendered descriptions of reproduction, and the intro­duction of assisted reproductive technologies and non-heterosexual parenting in the studied material.

The majority of the sex education books portray white, two-parent families and focus on heterosexual reproduction. Men and sperm are normally described as more active and impor­tant during conception, and the reproductive process is often depicted from the sperm’s point of view. At the same time, there are books throughout the period that problematize gender stereotypes in reproduction and, from the late 1990s, heteronormative sexuality.

This article also shows that verbal and visual descriptions of sexual intercourse were more explicit in sex education books from the 1970s, while books from the early 21th century depict a greater variety of families and assisted reproductive technologies. After the 1970s, sex educa­tion literature for all ages disappears and the books are more clearly adapted for different age groups.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Svenska litteratursällskapet , 2015. Vol. 136, 5-37 p.
Keyword [en]
children’s literature, Sweden, reproduction, gender, heteronormativity
National Category
General Literature Studies
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-279786OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-279786DiVA: diva2:908939
Available from: 2016-03-03 Created: 2016-03-03 Last updated: 2016-03-10

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Samlaren: tidskrift för svensk litteraturvetenskaplig forskning
General Literature Studies

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