JSTOR Daily and Hookups

Written by: Stephen Hsu

Primary Source: Information Processing

Looks like an interesting new magazine: JSTOR Daily provides insight, commentary, and analysis of ideas, research, and current events, tapping into the rich library of scholarship on JSTOR. (For non-academics, JSTOR is an online journal repository.)

Here’s an article from the new magazine:

JSTOR Daily: CAMPUS HOOKUP CULTURE: MYTH VS. REALTY

The out-of-control hookup culture on American college campuses has become a predictable subject for magazine articles, op-ed pages and blogs over the past decade or more. It’s terrific in that role, mixing titillation with a narrative of moral decline among elite young people, and giving commentators a chance to tisk at kids these days. …

What’s Really Changing?

A recent paper by Martin Monto and Anna Carey of the University of Portland confirmed what scholars looking at sexual behavior on campus have known for a while—the notion of modern campuses as a non-stop sex-fueled party is massively overblown. Looking at survey data from two groups of students, one that was in school from 1988 to 1996 and the other from 2004 to 2012, Monto and Carey found that the “hookup era” kids didn’t have more sex, or more partners, than the earlier group. However, there was a fairly small drop in the percentage with a regular sexual partner, with more respondents saying they’d had sex with a friend or a “casual date or pickup” instead.

Writing in the American Sociological Association magazine Contexts, Elizabeth A. Armstrong of the University of Michigan, Laura Hamilton of the University of California, Merced, and Paula England of New York University agree that modern campus culture isn’t a big departure from the recent past. The big change came with the Baby Boom’s sexual revolution, and increases in casual sex since then have been relatively gradual. …

Kind of disappointing that Tinder and Facebook and other social networking tools didn’t lead to more action on campus.

When I finished my PhD at Berkeley I relocated to Cambridge, MA. I found an aging hippie (turned lawyer) through the “ride board” at the student center to share part of the drive. The stories he told during our cross country trip left me with no doubt that my generation, which had come of age during the AIDS epidemic, had a pretty dull time compared to his cohort, which enjoyed free love and other goodies. A few years later I met some chicas de Sevilla who informed me that their sexual revolution had only happened recently, post-Franco :-)

The following two tabs change content below.
Stephen Hsu
Stephen Hsu is vice president for Research and Graduate Studies at Michigan State University. He also serves as scientific adviser to BGI (formerly Beijing Genomics Institute) and as a member of its Cognitive Genomics Lab. Hsu’s primary work has been in applications of quantum field theory, particularly to problems in quantum chromodynamics, dark energy, black holes, entropy bounds, and particle physics beyond the standard model. He has also made contributions to genomics and bioinformatics, the theory of modern finance, and in encryption and information security. Founder of two Silicon Valley companies—SafeWeb, a pioneer in SSL VPN (Secure Sockets Layer Virtual Private Networks) appliances, which was acquired by Symantec in 2003, and Robot Genius Inc., which developed anti-malware technologies—Hsu has given invited research seminars and colloquia at leading research universities and laboratories around the world.
Stephen Hsu

Latest posts by Stephen Hsu (see all)