Sexual Health in India

The education on sexual health in India has struggled greatly to ensure that people stand up and listen to what clinicians and advocates are saying.  As stated in the lecture, sexual education in India is a tough topic because to have sex before marriage is considered “taboo” so why would there be a need for sexual education on birth control?  This is a topic that has interested me because I remember in 5th grade sitting in my health class and learning the risks of sex.  The great thing about the United States is that, when you are young, teachers give you the essential information on the dangers and risks and then leave it up to you, as a student, to make good choices.  In order to address the issue in India, they have set up TARSHI, which is an organization that works towards expanding sexual and reproductive choices in people’s lives in an effort to enable them to enjoy lives of dignity, freedom from fear, infection and reproductive and sexual health problems.  They facilitate programs, trainings, and make publications about the importance of education in areas like India.  in a recent study in India, only 15% of men and women between the ages of 15 and 24 reported receiving any sex education and only 45% of young women and 37% of young men actually know and understand the risk of pregnancy that goes hand in hand with sex.

What I find kind of funny, that I would like to mention, is that the Kama Sutra actually comes from Indian history.  The Kama Sutra is considered the “go to advice book” on sexual behavior.  Why, then, is it so hard to talk and education the Indian people?  The Kama Sutra actually focused on the spiritual realm surrounding sex and behavior rather than the physical aspect that many Americans seem to be hooked on.  It’s almost considered a spiritual and godly text by many.

An anthropologist in this field goes by the name Dr. Paul Boyce who studied male-to-male sexual intimacy and HIV/AIDS prevention and occurrences in the area.  He also has prior work within community-based sexual health and activism.

Boyce, John. University of Sussex, “Department of Anthropoly.” Accessed August 9, 2013.

Trivedi, Anjani. TIME World, “World Population Focus on India, Part I: Sex Education.” Last modified July 10, 2013. Accessed August 9, 2013.


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