A hookup culture is one that accepts and encourages casual sexual encounters, including one-night stands and other related activity, which focus on physical pleasure without necessarily including emotional bonding or long-term commitment.Adolescents, emerging adults, men and women engage in hookups for a variety of reasons, which may range from instant physical gratification, to fulfillment of emotional needs, to using it as a means of finding a long-term romantic partner.
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Research on hookups is not seated within a singular disciplinary sphere; it sits at the crossroads of theoretical and empirical ideas drawn from a diverse range of fields, including psychology, anthropology, sociology, biology, medicine, and public health." The hookup culture is vaguely defined due to a variety of perspectives taken on this subject related human sexuality.
It is hard to make sense of the hookup culture with understanding why it exists in society and why individuals participate in the culture.
These developmental shifts, Garcia's systematic review of the literature suggests, is one of the factors driving the increase in hookups, a "popular cultural change that has infiltrated the lives of emerging adults throughout the Western world." The review shows that hookups are becoming increasingly normative among young adults and adolescents in North America and have taken root throughout the Western world, which represents a notable shift in how casual sex is perceived and accepted.
Garcia and others have noted that the "past decade has witnessed an explosion in interest in the topic of hookups, both scientifically and in the popular media.