STREAM
IQ2 Debate

DATE
08 AUGUST 2015

LOCATION
CITY RECITAL HALL

Is it time we exercised restraint? Could chastity – rather than abstinence – make sex special again?

Some say sex has become too pervasive. Sexiness is so expected nothing is sexy anymore.

Sex is everywhere we turn – from advertisements for cat food and soft drinks to the celebrities we admire, and the way men and women speak, dress and act every day. We are encouraged to lead happy, healthy sex lives that enhance our well-being and relationships. But does that mean it’s become too pervasive? Is sexiness even sexy anymore? Could chastity – rather than abstinence – make sex special again?

Even fun, consensual sex can be associated with suffering. We can be made to feel embarrassed by past choices in partners and humiliated when our private sex lives are made public – whether it’s a high-school dalliance or politician’s extramarital affair. Worse yet, people still use the threat of sexualised insult and violence to hurt and manipulate others.

On 8 August 2015, we posed the motion ‘Chastity will save the 21st Century” to a panel of experts. Arguing for the motion were theologian Scott Stephens, model and refugee advocate, Imogen Bailey and comedian Justin Hamilton. Against the motion were evolutionary biologist Rob Brooks, sexologist Nikki Goldstein and Buzzfeed’s political reporter Alex Lee.

Catch up

Weigh up the complexities of mutual trust versus sexual liberation, and decide where you feel chastity sits in a 21st Century world. Watch the complete debate now.

Photo gallery

Check out the photos from the live debate here.

Speakers

Scott Stephens

Scott is a widely published philosopher and theologian who writes on moral philosophy, theology and political theory. He is editor of the ABC’s Religion and Ethics and is co-host of The Minefield.

Imogen Bailey

Imogen is an Australian model, actress, singer and refugee advocate. She is also the host of podcast ‘Wild Awake Women’, she facilitates Women’s Circle’s and is a birth and end of life doula. 

Justin Hamilton

Justin is a comedian, writer and radio host. He has won awards for his solo stand up comedy shows including the Director’s Award at the Melbourne Comedy Festival for his show “Three Colours Hammo” and Comedian of the Decade for he Arts Monthly. 

Rob Brooks

Rob is an evolutionary biologist at UNSW. His areas of study include: mate choice, costs of being attractive, sexual conflict, and the links between sex, diet, obesity and death.

Nikki Goldstein

Dr Nikki Goldstein is a sexologist and relationships consultant. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology, a Postgraduate Diploma in Counselling and a Doctorate of Human Sexuality. She is host of the podcast ‘Sex And Life’.

Alex Lee

Alex is a comedian, television presenter and actor with a background in journalism. She’s appeared on ABC TV’s The Checkout, The Chaser’s Election Desk, The Roast, Media Circus, Story Club and SBSVICELAND’s The Feed.

Who is it for?


  • THE BUDDING ETHICIST
  • THE HEDONIST
  • THE ROMANTIC

What you'll take away


  • 01CLAIMS ABOUT RELIGION AND SEX - AWAY FROM THE PULPIT
  • 02CUTTING-EDGE RESEARCH
  • 03HOT TIPS FOR YOUR NEXT DATE

Things to think about


Big Thinker: Peter Singer

The invisible middle