FemSex is a student-facilitated DeCal (Democratic Education at Cal) course that was created at UC Berkeley in 1993. The program has now spread throughout the country, and this site pertains to the original FemSex program.
The Femsexy creators were Grace, Kristina and Christe who took a Feminism and Pornography course in the Spring of 1993. They went to Alix Schwartz and proposed a DeCal course called “The Orgasm Class”, which was a 8 week shorter version of the class we know now. The class was so popular that a second section was opened so more people could take it. Since 1993 when the curriculum was created and then 1994 when the course took off, FemSex has consecutively been in session until present day at Cal.
The purpose of FemSex is to create a safe space that encourages and facilitates the ability of students to learn about their bodies, explore their boundaries, desires, experiences and expand their understanding of power and privilege. Topics in class are designed to raise consciousness about: anatomy and physiology, the influence of social hierarchies in all reproductive choices, solo sex, partner sex, orgasm, sex work, communication, consent, relationships, gender/sex-based violence, and empowerment. FemSex strives to promote an environment of self-love and create strength through knowledge using group discussion, readings, analysis, guest speakers, films, and writings.
FemSex challenges students by exposing them to diverse opinions and experiences through fellow classmates and outside resources. It is our hope that individuals leave the class with a newfound sense of empowerment, a new community, and a greater understanding of how power and privilege are expressed in the world around us.
We strongly believe that everyone stands to gain something from FemSex and can contribute to the space, so we encourage folks of ALL identities to apply. You do not have to be a UC Berkeley student to be eligible to take this course.
About FemSex Staff
“FemSex facilitators take their job very seriously. They meet every week to plan the curriculum and to educate one another on the topics that they will be presenting to you, their students. They have taken a vow never to bluff, because they realize that some of the material they are teaching has life-or-death consequences, and all of the material are too important to lie about They work very hard to create a safe space in every FemSex classroom, a place where people can say even the very hardest things without fear of ridicule. They are also committed to diversity in the most thoroughgoing sense of the word: every kind of person is welcome in the classroom, as long as they are willing to make a commitment to honesty and open-mindedness. A FemSex instructor also promises to scrutinize themselves, and to hold themselves up to the same high standards of tolerance and commitment that they expects from their students.”
– Alix Schwartz (FemSex DeCal First Faculty Sponsor at Cal)
FemSex is a course that is not funded by the university and many times FemSex staff provides their own funds to ensure that the space continues to be accessible to all folks. FemSex facilitators provide a labor of love for our students because we are committed to this program and believe that all people should take FemSex!
For more information, contact us at email@example.com