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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Hiding hot topics: science, sex and schooling in British Columbia, 1910-1916 Swann, Michelle

Abstract

Between the years 1910-1916, the Vancouver Medical Association was responsible for designing a sex education program for the British Columbia Public School System. Through the course of the committee's work, the Vancouver Medical Association Sex Hygiene Committee (VMASHC) familiarised themselves with the teachings of the Sex Hygiene movement. The program which they recommend for implementation can be seen as representative of the second stage of North American sex education which advocated the teaching of sex education from the standpoint of biology. The VMASHC can be seen as a pioneer in the effort to teach sex education within Canadian schooling. Considerable time is spent contextualizing and explaining the impetus for the creating the first sex education program in British Columbia. The historical conditions and constraints involved in the birth of sex education are considered. It is argued that the social and political climate of early Vancouver played a direct role in influencing the VMASHC's final creation of what they called "a new line" of sex education in B.C.

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