Why I Hate the Rice Purity Test

By Riya Gopal

A few days ago, one of the girls in my group chat suggested we all take the Rice Purity Test. For those unfamiliar, it is an online test created by Rice University designed to evaluate one’s “innocence” on worldly matters, mostly involving sex, drugs, or criminal activity. After taking the test, you are provided with a number between 0 and 100, with a lower number being indicative of impurity. I had taken the test before, but wanted to take it again to see if my number had changed. So, I pulled up the test and began.

What’s crazy to me is what happened next. After seeing my score, my stomach dropped. I had lowered a few points since previously taking the test, and I felt this wave of shame overcome me. I felt dirty. I went onto the group chat and saw my friends sharing their numbers, all of them equally embarrassed. While scrolling through the chat, I realized something. The girls were experiencing shame regardless of if their numbers were low or high. One girl was ashamed of her 30. Another girl was ashamed of her 80. There was no number that felt right. There was no winning.

The implications of this test are deleterious to self-image. As human beings, our experiences do not have to define us. Carrying around a number that signifies past experiences in relation to our purity is an intangible but heavy burden. These labels of being a “prude” or “slutty” are subliminal byproducts of how we perceive ourselves after taking this test. Why are we making sexual activity, something that is supposed to be a natural and enjoyable act, a contamination to our being? Why should a criminal past define those who have changed and grown since?

Purity should not be defined by your past, but rather by the philanthropic and kindhearted measures you take in your day-to-day life. It does not matter how much sex you have had or how many drugs you have taken (as long as you are safe and healthy!!). What matters is the present moment, and how you use the goodness in your heart to impact those around you. That is what a pure being is.

16 thoughts on “Why I Hate the Rice Purity Test”

  1. I Remember taking a rice purity test and the results pointed towards me for being a feminist.

    Embraced it and life smooth from there! Feminism is not something we have to become, its just something to acknowledge

  2. I got a score of 9. I kind of take pride in it because I find the absurdity of it funny, and my low score makes other people realize that they’re probably doing just fine. people like me and see me as a wholesome person and seeing me have a low score makes them realize how silly the whole quiz really is.

  3. Some people may become extremely self-hating as a result of the purity test’s deception. Even I battled with it back in high school.

  4. I see where you’re coming from, but maybe we shouldn’t be so quick to condemn the Rice Purity Test. At the end of the day, it’s just a lighthearted online quiz.

    Sure, some people may place too much stock in their score or feel ashamed. But for the most part, it’s meant as a fun way for friends to share and bond over the silliness of putting a numerical value on “purity.”

    The test shouldn’t be taken as a serious indictment of anyone’s worth or morality. The results don’t define you as a person. Try to have a sense of humor about it and take the results with a grain of salt.

    In moderation, tests like this are just a way to laugh about our diverse life experiences. Let’s not overthink it or ascribe more meaning to it than intended. The number doesn’t matter – what matters is how we live our lives and treat each other day to day.

  5. I went to take the rice purity test but quickly got uncomfortable when trying to decide whether or not consent is taken into consideration for some of the questions. For me, that drastically changes my score

  6. It’s perfectly okay if you don’t like or feel uncomfortable with the Rice Purity Test. People have different opinions and preferences, and the Rice Purity Test might not be suitable or enjoyable for everyone. Here are a few reasons why someone might not like the test:

    Privacy Concerns: The test asks personal questions about various aspects of one’s life. Some individuals may find these questions intrusive or prefer to keep certain aspects of their personal life private.

    Judgment or Stigmatization: The test may unintentionally perpetuate societal judgments or stigmas around certain behaviors. People might not appreciate being judged based on their responses to the test, as it can reinforce stereotypes or societal norms.

    Discomfort with Rating System: The test assigns numerical scores based on responses, potentially leading to comparisons and judgments. Some individuals may feel uncomfortable with this quantification of personal experiences.

    Cultural or Personal Differences: Cultural backgrounds and personal values vary widely. The test may not align with

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