Drawing upon interviews with second-generation Latina youth, this informative article runs knowledge on women’s intimate life by examining just exactly how Latina girls build their subjectivity that is sexual within context of the first intercourse experiences. Inside their narratives, girls identified 2 kinds of relationships as suitable for virginity loss—those defined by love and people described as a shared belief of caring. Their perceptions among these relationships not merely informed how Latina girls made feeling of their first intercourse experiences but additionally entailed critical effects for his or her power to negotiate interest and sex that is safe partners at this stage within their intimate biography. The focus regarding the sex that is first of Latina youth provides insight in their notions of gender, race/ethnicity, and intimate ideologies and exactly how they normally use these suggestions to socially build their intimate identities.

Extra information

A Chicano/Latino supported this research performing bad analysis give through the Center for Chicano Studies at UC-Santa Barbara, a Sexuality Research Dissertation Fellowship through the personal Science analysis Council, a Dissertation give in females’s Studies through the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation, and a Faculty Fellowship through the Institute for analysis on Race and Public Policy at UIC. We thank Denise Segura, Carlos Alamo-Pastrana, Amanda Lewis, Barbara Risman, MГ©rida RГєa, and Laurie Schaffner with regards to their insights and suggested statements on previous drafts for this article. I also thank the anonymous reviewers of Identities: international Studies in Culture and energy with regards to their feedback.


1. Latina would be utilized to people of Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, Dominican, and Central/South United states lineage. Nevertheless, efforts is going to be designed to distinguish one of the different Latina/o groups whenever feasible.

2. These studies are mainly centered on study information.

3. All about the sex of Latina youth is essentially demographic in the wild, produced from nationwide studies for instance the Youth danger Behavior Surveillance (YRBS) while the nationwide Survey of Family development (NSFG) conducted by the Centers for infection Control and Prevention (CDC).

4. The study design for the task included a nonrandom selection procedure; hence, the Latina youth talked about in this essay represent a group that is highly self-selected. The next requirements were utilized to recruit individuals in 1999 and 2002–2004: (a) self-defined as intimately active, (b) had been amongst the many years of 13 and 18, (c) self-defined as exercising safe intercourse, and (d) had no young ones. The only difference between research selection requirements between your 1999 and 2002–2004 fieldwork excursions was at regards to racial/ethnic self-identification; in 1999 the necessity had been that individuals self-identify as Latina, whereas in 2002–2004 the necessity had been that participants especially self-identify as Mexican or Puerto Rican (to permit for lots more relative analyses of those two Latina teams).

5. Nineteen associated with the women reported surviving in an individual female-headed home and all but six regarding the women reported nevertheless being at school. Most of the women reported having a working-class back ground; parents typically worked within the solution sector or in factories.

6. Laura Carpenter maintains that comprehensive same-sex definitions of virginity loss among youth are informed by a social context in that your previous efforts of gay activists has managed to get feasible for teenagers (compared to early in the day generations) to “recognize and show their intimate identities at previous many years, frequently without tinkering with heterosexual sex” ( Carpenter 2005 Carpenter, Laura M. 2005 . Virginity Loss: An Intimate Portrait of First Sexual Experiences, nyc : ny University Press . Google Scholar : 46).

7. The 3 girls whom failed to interpret virginity loss experiences as having to be understood to be unique or while the stage that is next a intimate relationship offered another viewpoint regarding the concept of virginity loss. All three reported which they deliberately failed to desire the event to be marked as “special,” explaining that they approached their first intercourse experiences as possibilities to “learn” more about intercourse along with managed to get a point to carry out this task by having a intimate partner who was simply a lot more of an acquaintance as opposed to some body they had a proven relationship.

8. As Risman and Schwartz’s (2002) Risman, Barbara J. and Pepper, Schwartz . 2002 . Following the intimate revolution: Gender politics in teenager relationship . Contexts, 1(1): 16 – 24 . Crossref , Google Scholar advise, adolescent definitions of relationships may be much more casual than grownups that can reflect various timeframes on relationships. Therefore, a teenager might define a “two-week acquaintance” as a relationship ( Risman and Schwartz 2002 Risman, Barbara J. and Pepper, Schwartz . 2002 . Following the revolution that is sexual Gender politics in teen relationship . Contexts, 1(1): 16 – 24 . Crossref , Google Scholar ). When it comes to the young ladies in my test, relationships generally was in fact founded for 3 months or longer ahead of sex that is first.

About the Author

Jessica’s expertise is in expanding the electorate to include youth, union members, people of color, and low income voters. Jessica directed New York State’s largest legislative advocacy organization, the SEIU-backed Healthcare Education Project (HEP), and managed the nine top priority states for the historic election of Barack Obama.