Gender, reputation and regret: The ontological politics of Australian drug education.
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This study explores the role of gender in the constitution youth alcohol and other drug consumption in Australian drug education curriculum. Drawn from an analysis of contemporary classroom drug education documents, it is argued that current drug education reproduces unethical and harmful accounts of femininity and masculinity. These enactments of gender primarily arise in three ways. First, drug education currently positions young women's consumption practices as intrinsically more problematic than those of young men. Second, drug education works to position young women's consumption practices as a problem of spoiled reputation and regret. Third, drug education works to responsibilise young women for potential danger and harm they experience while intoxicated without any consideration of the illegal actions of young men. Working with Annemarie Mol's notion of ontological politics, this article argues that Australian drug education enacts gendered realities of youth consumption that work to reproduce, rather than reduce, a range of social harms, ‘drug-related’ or otherwise.
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