Sex and the Soul

Juggling Sexuality, Spirituality, Romance, and Religion on America's College Campuses

By Donna Freitas; Lauren F. Winner (Foreword by)
(Oxford University Press, USA, Hardcover, 9780195311655, 299pp.)

Publication Date: April 2008

List Price: $24.95*
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Description
Based on dozens of face-to-face interviews, Sex and the Soul explores the sexual and spiritual lives of today's college students. Donna Freitas crisscrossed the country, visiting a range of America's colleges and universities--from public to private, Catholic to evangelical--to find out what students had to say about these highly personal subjects. Their stories will not only engage readers, but, in many cases, move them with the painful struggles these candid young women and men face. Indeed, the book uncovers aspects of college life that may unsettle some readers, especially parents. Many campuses, for instance, are dominated by the pervasiveness of hook-up culture. Moreover, many students see little connection between sex and religion, even as they seek one between sex and spirituality. Indeed, these observations hold true even at Catholic schools. Only at evangelical colleges is religion an important factor when deciding whether or not to engage in sex. But Freitas's research also reveals that, even at secular schools, students are not comfortable with a culture of casual sex, and that they do want spirituality, at least, if not also religion, to speak about what they should do and who they should try to be--not just what they should avoid doing.
Sex and the Soul will offer readers the chance to hear college students speaking honestly about extremely sensitive topics, in a book that will be of great interest to students, parents, clergy, teachers, and anyone who wants to know what's happening on today's college campuses.
Named one of the Best Religion Books of 2008 by Publishers Weekly
"Fascinating, disturbing...engaging...persuasive.... Freitas's work chronicles a poignant spiritual loss that students themselves articulate and mourn."
--Publishers Weekly
"Candid, disturbing, yet ultimately hopeful....Throughout this beautifully written book, Freitas presents students' feelings and experiences in an unflinching yet compassionate way. You care about these young people and their struggles. This book is a great service to students, parents, and those at colleges and universities who want to prepare young adults not just for the workplace but for healthy and fulfilling lives."
--Christian Science Monitor.



About the Author
Donna Freitas is a professor at Boston University. Her writing has appeared in many newspapers and magazines, including The Boston Globe, Newsweek, Salon, and The Wall Street Journal. She contributes regularly to On Faith, an online panel co-sponsored by Newsweek and The Washington Post, and she is an occasional commentator for NPR s All Thing s Considered. Growing up, Donna could often be found covered in flour in the wee hours of the morning making pasta from scratch with her Italian mother and grandmother, listening to them pray to one saint or another. She lives in New York City. This is her first novel.

Lauren F. Winner is an ordained Episcopal priest and the author of numerous books, including Girl Meets God, Real Sex, Mudhouse Sabbath, and Still, which won the Christianity Today Book Award in Spirituality. She teaches at Duke Divinity School in Durham, North Carolina. Her articles have appeared in the New York Times Book Review, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Books & Culture, and other periodicals.
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