Saturday, December 12, 2009

Twilight Promotes Abstinence: University of Missouri Communications Experts Research To Be Published

Experts from The University of Missouri has been conducting research on how the predominantly female Twilighters obsession to the series are stemed from the traditional, idealized romantic relationship that stresses the importance of abstinence. The experts are quoted to have said:

“What really surprised us was the obvious abstinence message in the books and that teens were responding favorably to this message,” said Melissa Click, assistant professor of communication in the College of Arts and Science. “Many of the young women that we interviewed had felt pressure to perform sexually by their peers, but now they have a desire to find their own ‘Edward,’ who will be interested in them for nonsexual reasons.”

“Twilight is less of a vampire story and more of a romantic love story,” Click said. “Edward and Bella’s relationship is a very traditional model of a relationship that reinforces gender stereotypes. The series reinvents traditional romantic ideals and embraces the concept of love against all odds. These impressions of romantic relationships may shape younger women’s expectations of romance.”

However, some messages in Twilight could be harmful to young women.

“Although a seemingly perfect romantic interest, Edward’s obsessive and controlling behavior could send some very problematic messages to young fans,” said Elizabeth Behm-Morawitz, assistant professor of communication. “For example, at one point in the series, Edward takes the battery out of Bella’s car to prevent her from leaving.”

Interesting look at The Twilight Saga from an academic point of view. You can read the complete article here. The research will be published in the new book "Bitten By Twilight: Youth Culture, Media, and the Vampire Franchise" targeted to be released in May 2010.

Any takers?

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