From Sappho to De Sade: Moments in the History of Sexuality

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The history of sexuality has been the subject of increased interest in recent years and more widely acknowledged importance in the interpretation of past mentalites. Yet historians have only recently begun to study sexual practices in any depth, establishing that sexuality is not a biological constant but an ever-changing phenomenon, continuously shaped by people themselves. The contributors to this inter-disciplinary collection bring their expertise in ancient as well as medieval history, anthropology, modern history, and psychology to bear upon the history of sexuality. They explore various aspects of sexuality in successive periods: pederasty and lesbian love in antiquity, incest in the Middle Ages, sexual education during the Dutch Republic, voyeurism in the rococo, prostitution in Vienna around 1900, and the invention of sexology. From Sappho to De Sade, first published in 1989, offers an informative and entertaining collection of essays for students of cultural anthropology, social history and gender studies.