Speaker re-envisions societal norms about intimacy at Lycoming College

Author and speaker Jaclyn Friedman will discuss healthy ways to think about intimacy and human sexuality at 6:30 p.m., Feb. 23 in the Keiper Recreation Center on the Lycoming College campus. The event is free and open to the public.

Friedman’s work has redefined the concept of healthy sexuality and popularized the “yes means yes” standard of sexual consent. She is a popular speaker and opinion writer and the creator of two books: “Yes Means Yes: Visions of Female Sexual Power and a World Without Rape,” and “What You Really Really Want: The Smart Girl’s Shame-Free Guide to Sex and Safety.”

As an undergraduate, Friedman thought she was too smart to become a victim of sexual assault — until another student proved her wrong. That experience eventually led her to become a student and instructor of IMPACT safety training, where she helped bring safety skills to the communities that need them the most.

Her insistence that authentic sexual liberation is necessary to end the systemic sexualization and violation of women prompted Lyn Mikel Brown, professor of education and women’s, gender, and sexuality studies at Colby College, to call her “this generation’s version of Dr. Ruth.”

Friedman is a popular speaker on campuses and at conferences across the U.S. and beyond. She has been a guest on numerous radio and television shows including the “Today Show,” “Nightline,” “PBS News Hour,” and the “Melissa Harris-Perry Show.” Her commentary has appeared in outlets including “CNN,” “Time,” “The Washington Post,” “The Nation,” “Jezebel” and “The Huffington Post.”

Friedman holds a bachelor’s from Wesleyan University and an M.F.A. in creative writing from Emerson College.