Home > Sex, drugs and stereotypes.

Devlin, Maurice (2004) Sex, drugs and stereotypes. Equality News, Summer, pp. 17-19.

External website: http://eprints.nuim.ie/365/

"Three out of five 15 to 17 year-olds drink alcohol, youth poll finds.” “One in four 15 to 17 year-olds have had sex – poll.” “55% of young know of peer suicide attempts.” These were the headlines on the front page of The Irish Times on three consecutive days last September when the results of a ‘youth poll’ carried out by TNS MRBI on behalf of the newspaper were published. On each day, in addition to the front page ‘news’ story, a further two full pages were devoted to the poll’s findings. In keeping with the headlines, these two-page ‘spreads’ were, on the first and second days respectively, devoted entirely to drink/drugs and sexual behaviour. The third day’s spread dealt with a broader range of issues (health, media consumption, religion, politics) but obviously in much less depth. Taken as a whole, the thrust of the series was to portray young people as being in one way or another ‘problematic’

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