Speaking to the World
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New York Times Best Selling Author
Peggy Orenstein is an internationally-acclaimed expert on the challenges facing teens, college students--and their parents--as they come of age in today’s culture, She is the author of the New York Times best-sellers Boys & Sex, Girls & Sex, Cinderella Ate My Daughter and Waiting for Daisy as well as Don’t Call Me Princess, Flux and the classic SchoolGirls. A contributing writer for The New York Times Magazine, Peggy has also written for such publications as The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, New York Magazine, The Atlantic and The New Yorker, and has contributed commentaries to NPR’s All Things Considered. Read More >
Peggy is frequently sought-after as an expert by national media and has been featured on, among other programs, Good Morning America, CBS This Morning, The Today Show, Morning Joe, NPR’s Fresh Air and The PBS News Hour. Her TED Talk, “What Young Women Believe About Their Own Sexual Pleasure,” has been viewed over 4.6 million times.
As a speaker, Peggy is known for her provocative insight, conversational style and surprising wit. Her fresh take on such topics as sexual consent, ethics and pleasure; the influences of mainstream media, social media and pornography; the rise of hookup culture; sexual consent; and gender socialization have made her a sought-after speaker on high school and college campuses as well as at professional conferences. She has spoken to audience throughout the U.S. and abroad including at numerous high schools; colleges; medical schools; conferences such as TED, South by Southwest, The Aspen Institute and the White House (Obama administration). Read Less ^
TED: What Young Women Believe About Their Own Sexual Pleasure
How to Guide Teen Girls Through Love and Relationship | CBS This Morning
The Messages We Teach Boys About Sex | Amanpour and Company
Boys & Sex
Inspired by her New York Times best-seller, Girls & Sex, Orenstein here offers a clear-eyed picture of the new sexual landscape girls face in high school through college and reveals how they’re negotiating it. With humor, surprising facts and compelling anecdotes, she opens up a much-needed conversation about an often silent subtext of teenage life, touching on the ways in which internet porn, social media and traditional media affect young people’s sexual scripts; the role of hookup culture; how what “counts” as sex has changed; the painful realities surrounding assault; consent education; and taboos around discussing female sexual pleasure (and why that endangers girls). This talk can be tailored for parents, professional groups (conferences, corporate, therapists, educators etc.), college students or high school students (15+). While its main subject is girls, the subject matter has been enthusiastically received by boys as well!
Boys are subject to the same cultural forces as girls—steeped in the same distorted media images of female sexual availability and male sexual entitlement—which affect how they navigate sexual and emotional relationships. Based on over a decade of research and inspired by her New York Times best-seller Boys & Sex, Orenstein, in this talk, focuses on her work with high school and college guys, revealing how they understand and negotiate the new rules of physical and emotional intimacy in a changing world. Combining research, wit and powerful stories Orenstein explains boys’ emotional development; how pornography has become the default sex educator; young men’s understanding of hookup culture and consent; the surprising lessons to be learned from queer boys; and young men's experience as both victims and perpetrators of sexual violence. The result is a provocative and paradigm-shifting talk that offers a much-needed vision of how boys can truly move forward as their best selves. This talk can be tailored for parents, professional groups (conferences, corporate, therapists, educators etc.), college students or high school students (15+). While its main subject is boys, the subject matter has been enthusiastically received by girls as well!
In this talk, Orenstein combines her research with voices of both boys and girls (as well as those between or beyond genders), to discuss the impact on high school and college students’ sexual scripts of mainstream media, social media and porn; hookup culture; changing expectations around consent; the politics of sexual pleasure; the diversity of sexual orientations; gendered power dynamics. With humor and compassion, she separates myth from reality, ultimately giving parents, educators and young people the conversational tools they need to ensure safe, pleasurable, mutually satisfying sexual encounters and intimate relationships.
"What an incredible pleasure it was to hear Peggy speak last night! Many thanks again to APB for all you did to make it possible. We've already heard from several community members that Peggy is inspiring long-overdue conversation and reflection -- what a tremendous gift to our sons and daughters and community as a whole."
“Everyone felt Peggy’s visit was a total success, especially the students! Her message was perfectly prepared and directed for those in the room. She got terrific questions after her talk. And she stayed for at least 30 minutes after that to answer follow up questions and talk with students who didn’t get a chance to go to the mic. She was awesome!”
"I thought the event was perfect! I could not be happier with your responsiveness and Peggy’s words of wisdom."
"Peggy’s visit to our school was transformative. She sparked conversations between kids and adults that have been incomplete, censored or missing. Students brainstormed how to talk to their parents about sex. Parents considered expanding the conversations to foster healthy relationships. Three days later, students are organizing open space dialogue to explore the intersections of sexuality and other identities with each other. Girls and boys feel empowered to openly consider their roles and how they reinforce or break societal norms.”
“Peggy is a terrific speaker. Not only is she insightful and smart, drawing from numerous sources to support her points with intelligence and humor, but she somehow manages to present her material in a manner that is fresh, authentic and unrehearsed. It is a rare speaker who can find the balance of “sticking to the topic” and still maintain a spark of spontaneity, yet Peggy manages to do just that. The feedback we received was overwhelmingly positive and we hope Peggy Orenstein’s visit will have a lasting impact on the parents – and the children – in our city.”
“Peggy spoke in our all-school assembly and then again at night to a packed audience from the local area. She is fearless and tackled all the important questions that appear in her book, Girls and Sex, although she was careful to ask about appropriate guidelines with the student group. She is an excellent speaker and held the interest of both audiences from beginning to end. It’s worth noting that Peggy was equally good with students of all genders, and spent quite a bit of time with students who identify as male. They found her to be an excellent listener and she helped them probe what it means to be male in this era. Coupled with her stated topic of femininity, desire, and pleasure, this openness made her a valuable presence on campus for all our students.”
"It was exciting and inspiring for me, following Peggy's talk, to watch my female and male classmates reconsidering the societal expectations surrounding sex to which they had unknowingly held themselves, and engaging in real conversation about our campus's sexual culture and its effect on all genders.”
“Our audience loved Peggy's engaging, informative and, at times, humorous talk. Her research, knowledge, and insights were so welcomed by our community. We could have all gone on asking questions for hours!”
“She spoke plainly to students about sex in the voice of their hip and funny favorite aunt who wears cool jewelry and might have toured with a band."
“Our parents are hungry for Peggy’s message. Many said that she was one of the best speakers we have ever had.”
“Peggy’s talk was everything we could have hoped for! Our community was so engaged - both during the presentation and after, talking to each other in small groups for a long time. We loved how she included the students' voices and how she listened so well to them.”
Boys & Sex: Young Men on Hookups, Love, Porn, Consent, and Navigating the New Masculinity
Girls & Sex: Navigating the Complicated New Landscape
Cinderella Ate My Daughter: Dispatches from the Front Lines of the New Girlie-Girl Culture
Schoolgirls; Young Women, Self-Esteem, and the Confidence Gap
Flux: Women on Sex, Work, Love, Kids and Life in a Half-Changed World
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