Do you know why girls have sex?
When was the last time you actually asked them?
Our culture is saturated with images of female sexuality, but women’s own real voices are nowhere to be found. Subjectified lets women speak for themselves, presenting an authentic picture of diverse sexual experiences from young women across the U.S.
Through in-depth personal interviews about sex and sexuality, Subjectified spans the country collecting stories from women whose sound bites are just the beginning of their captivating accounts: a young mom, an abstinent Christian, a lesbian, survivors of STDs and sexual assaults. Subjectified taps into stories too real for reality TV and too unexpected for romantic comedies. The women address their most intimate motivations and perspectives on sex as it intersects with their lives in so many ways: body image, family ties, motherhood, sex education, health, contraception, abuse, pleasure, and fulfillment. From poignant to awkward to uncontrollably funny, the interviews peer into the minds of young women in America trying their best to make sense of a complicated subject: themselves.
It was personal curiosity that first brought Melissa Tapper Goldman to the question “Why do girls have sex?” In a culture so saturated with images of female sexuality, it is surprisingly difficult to find real examples that aren’t scripted by men or promoted as “reality” television, flattening characters down to sound bites. When this commercial imagery is the first exposure that many girls have to sexuality, setting expectations and norms, how can we begin to distinguish between fact and fiction?
With faith in the depth of the real stories of women’s sexual histories, Goldman aimed to turn the politically divisive question of why girls have sex into a personal one. Camera in hand, she found young women around the country from different backgrounds, religions, classes and sexual identities, and asked them to explore their most intimate details on the record, with the common goal of heightening understanding and empathy among women from different walks of life.
Subjectified spans 3,000 miles across the country. Conservative and liberal, secular and Christian, gay and straight, these women answer the earnest questions that many of us have long wanted to ask people who are different from ourselves. Each woman’s own elements of bravery and weakness emerge in the personal narratives, showing female sexuality from a first-person perspective rarely caught on camera. From poignant to awkward to uncontrollably funny, the interviews peer into the minds of young women in America trying their best to make sense of a complicated subject: themselves.