Sex: A Modern History

The history of sexuality is not only about sex. It sheds light on human relationships, needs and desires, expectations and exceptions. 

This series of lectures grapples with six important debates within modern history, including what is sexual pleasure, how do we know what is “deviant”, does pornography reflect or create sexual norms, how does society's attitude to sex work relate to women’s status within society, does monogamy have a history (and future), and why is abstinence such a heated political choice? Although the main case studies are drawn from Britain and the U.S., attention will also be paid to global trends. 

The lectures explore sexuality as a mirror for wider social arrangements.

In this series