"Charlene putting Chris' ring on his finger" by Charlene Trapp / CC BY-NC-ND 4.0"

How the ‘extreme abstinence’ of the purity movement created a sense of shame in evangelical women

Dec 10, 2019

By Julie Ingersoll

Millennial evangelicals are speaking out about the heightened emphasis on sexual purity that characterized their upbringing in that subculture.

Joshua Harris, a former pastor who became one of the most public faces of the purity culture movement in the United States with his 1997 book “I Kissed Dating Goodbye,” recently renounced his views and very publicly left evangelicalism. When his book came out, it was widely read and led many evangelicals to believe that the best path through adolescence and to a fulfilling happy marriage was the embrace of purity culture.

So, what exactly is the purity movement all about?

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