The Oklahoma Daily Profiles Annie Sprinkle

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from – Sex. We all know it is a natural intimate act as well as a platform for many dirty jokes. But do we really know as much as we should about it?

On Feb. 3, the University of Illinois welcomed former porn star Annie Sprinkle to one of its residence halls for a week to educate students about sex.

Though many people may recall her as an infamous porn star, today she has more than porn on her list of accomplishments. Sprinkle is an artist, sexologist, author, lecturer, educator, a “pioneering” adult film director and performer, professional photographer and more.

Oklahoma may be a fairly conservative state, but that does not mean all college students are against fornication. A sex education course offered to students would be beneficial and educational.

Realistically, if you haven’t had sex already, you likely will at some point in your life unless you’re planning to become a nun or move to a deserted island. Why not be properly educated and made aware of the good and the danger that accompany it?

Sprinkle has left a trail across the U.S. and around the world with her contributions to sex education. She has visited many colleges in the U.S., as well as museums and institutions in many countries offering informative lectures, sex seminars and performative events.

Sprinkle has a strong passion for researching and exploring sexuality. For the last 36 years of her life, she really has taken a hands-on approach with her work, dedicating much of her time studying and exploring the subject. Sprinkle believes sex education is important and supports the notion of having sex education programs in colleges across the nation.

“[Sex education] is important because sex is crucial for keeping our species perpetuated,” Sprinkle said in an email interview with The Daily. “It’s a very complex topic that changes from decade to decade, year to year, century to century.”

While at the University of Illinois, Sprinkle said she did a variety of things during her five-day seminar at the campus.

“Mostly I did lectures about my life and my work in an honest way,” Sprinkle said. “I simply shared who I was, what I believe and what I have experienced in my life as a sex worker, as an artist, as a woman, as a student and teacher of sexuality.”

Along with giving lectures at the university, Sprinkle was able to slide in a presentation on “Eco-sexology,” as well as a free sidewalk sex clinic that gave students an opportunity to talk to sexperts for any advice or knowledge they were seeking.

“Sex is a fascinating topic,” Sprinkle said. “Why does anyone have a passion for archeology, or yoga, or makeup artistry, or anything? Sex is a valid topic. I find it particularly appealing because sex is very political and provocative, and it relates to everyone.”

This might be a touchy subject for some people, but the reality is that a significant amount of college students are sexually active. The university can demonstrate its care and interest in students’ wellbeing by investing in a sex education program to educate students on their bodies, sexual intercourse, diseases and even abstinence in a mature, educational atmosphere.

Students have already tried to fill this need through the Sexperts program, which brings trained student experts to educate their fellow students.

But as beneficial as this program is, it is not enough. A course offered through the university could help educate more students and provide them with more in-depth knowledge. It would be a strong message from the university that sex education is important.

Sprinkle believes sex education can play a pivotal role in helping students better understand their sexuality.

“I think people have a very narrow idea about what sex is, how to do it and what is normal or abnormal,” Sprinkle said. “Everyone has a sexuality in one way or another and has to figure it all out, and what that means for them. There is a social norm, and most people don’t even fit that norm.”

The program at the University of Illinois was funded with student fees. OU should establish a sex education program made available to those interested in paying for it. And OU should consider inviting Sprinkle for a sex education seminar — she has a good grasp of the concept and is qualified for the job. Who knows, maybe she can sprinkle some enlightenment on our campus.

To learn more about Sprinkle and see where she’s headed next, visit her website.

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