Sex Positive Week comes back to campus


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Kelsey Werkheiser, News Co-Editor

Speak UP’s annual Sex Positive Week will be returning to Bucknell from Feb. 13–17 . This five-day string of events is meant to celebrate sexuality and interpersonal relationships, as well as educate attendees on various focuses, according to organizers. All events aim to build a safe and inclusive environment.

Fae Groves ’24, event coordinator for Speak UP, was proud to announce that “this year, [Sex Positive Week is] offering multiple types of events for every kind of human.”

“I think this week is so empowering because society has taught us that it is wrong to talk about and celebrate our sexuality and even when it is spoken about it is extremely cisnormative, heteronormative and allonormative,” Kayla Howie ’25, Speak UP peer, said. “Sex positivity week is a chance for Bucknell to become more knowledgeable and understanding of the importance of talking about sexuality.”

Speak UP will be collaborating with the Women’s Resource Center to host a documentary showing in the ELC Gallery Theatre at 6 p.m. on Feb. 13. The documentary “Naughty Books” (2020) follows the success stories of three different female-identifying erotica authors, a genre that boomed in the wake of the novel Fifty Shades of Grey.

“I think it’s important to shine a spotlight on women who are taking control of their sexuality and writing their own erotica novels rather than being sexualized by men,” Howie said. 

Speak UP will then collaborate with LGBTQ+ Resource Center on Feb. 14 to host a book club. Attendees will be discussing “Ace: What Asexualiy Reveals about Desire, Society, and the Meaning of Sex” by Angela Chen. Chen utilizes her position as a journalist to dig into some of the conversations and misconceptions surrounding asexuality, and how this identity fits into the LGBTQ+ community and society as a whole. The discussion will take place in the ELC Arches Lounge from 7–8:30 p.m.. 

The “I <3 the Female Orgasm” presentation returns on Wednesday Feb. 15 at 7 p.m. in the ELC Forum. This event, despite its specific focus, welcomes all attendees regardless of gender. Hosted by popular sex educators, this event serves as a place for education and discussion on sexuality and pleasure.

“I found the I <3 the Female Orgasm talk to be a refreshing and engaging platform to talk about the taboos and lack of education surrounding sex, sex toys, the orgasm gap, etc.,” Hannah Jensen ’24, an attendee of last year’s event, said. “Although not revolutionary, and a touch performative, I appreciated the speakers thoughtful encouragement of audience feedback and participation. I recommend the talk to encourage candid conversations about the harsh reality of hookup culture and intimacy on campus… and you could also win prizes!”

Speak UP will be collaborating with the Gender & Sexuality Alliance to welcome drag queen Trixy Valentine on Thursday at 6 p.m. in the ELC Gallery Theatre. Valentine will be providing a queer-inclusive local sex education presentation, as well as a brief drag performance. 

“I think it’s really important for sex education to happen on campus, because it often seems like something made out to be negative by higher administration,” AP Howell ’24, Gender & Sexuality Alliance president, said. “By bringing in Trixy, it’s like supporting a small business, because she’s one of the only local registered queer sex educators that also does so in drag. As a club, we aim to bring in empowering queer experiences such as drag, so it’s great to have Trixy.”

A performance of The Vagina Monologues will take place on Feb. 17 from 7:30–9:30 p.m. in Trout Auditorium. Friday’s event is in collaboration with multiple groups: the Center for the Study of Race, Ethnicity, & Gender, the Office of Interpersonal Violence Prevention & Advocacy and the Women’s Resource Center.

“The Vagina Monologues is a revolutionary piece of literature that is comprised of the stories of hundreds of people with vaginas,” Groves, who is also a member of the cast, said. “Playwright and activist V addresses a variety of topics that are specific to people with vaginas, including violence, self-exploration, and perseverance. Members of Bucknell’s student body, faculty, and staff will tell the stories of those who have persevered before us and embrace what it means to be a person with a vagina.”

Tickets are $5 for students and $10 dollars for staff, faculty and other members of the community through the Campus Box Office.

All proceeds for this event will go to Transitions of PA, Lewisburg’s interpersonal violence agency. Transitions of PA looks to provide advocacy, empowerment and education to victims, survivors, families and communities to end patterns of violence and abuse.

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