Sexuality in Europe: A Twentieth-Century History by Dagmar Herzog

By Dagmar Herzog

This unique booklet brings a desirable and available new account of the tumultuous heritage of sexuality in Europe from the waning of Victorianism to the cave in of Communism and the increase of ecu Islam. even if the 20 th century is usually referred to as "the century of intercourse" and noticeable as an period of accelerating liberalization, Dagmar Herzog as an alternative emphasizes the complexities and contradictions in sexual wants and behaviours, the ambivalences surrounding sexual freedom, and the problems encountered in securing sexual rights. Incorporating the latest scholarship on a large diversity of conceptual difficulties and nationwide contexts, the e-book investigates the moving fortunes of marriage and prostitution, birth control and abortion, queer and immediately lifestyles. It analyzes sexual violence in struggle and peace, the advertising of sexual pride in fascist and democratic societies, the position of eugenics and incapacity, the politicization and commercialization of intercourse, and approaches of secularization and non secular renewal.

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Already the raging public debates about whether or not to tolerate prostitution had stimulated more attention to the apparent vagaries of human desire. 17 Also men who were just as uncomfortable with or repulsed by the prostitution-preferring habits of their fellow men started to speak up. Not just the mechanics of sex, in short, but also the emotions involved became matters for closer scrutiny. Nothing was any longer presumed to be self-evident. Nowhere were the debates over the nature of sex more raucous and open than in Germany and the German-speaking areas of Switzerland and Austria-Hungary.

Sexuality in Austria. Contemporary Austrian Studies 15 (New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Publishers, 2007), 31–47. Stauter-Halsted, Keely, “‘A Generation of Monsters’: Jews, Prostitution, and Racial Purity in the 1892 L’viv White Slavery Trial,” Austrian History Yearbook 38 (2007), 25–35. Stoler, Ann Laura, Carnal Knowledge and Imperial Power: Race and the Intimate in Colonial Rule (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2002). Surkis, Judith, Sexing the Citizen: Morality and Masculinity in France, 1870–1920 (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2006).

The most prominent male medical doctors agreed with this assessment but saw the differences between the genders as simply inalterably rooted in nature. Men, opined Albert Moll in 1904, sought “detumescence,” or release; women sought “contrectation” – touch and connection. ” But female sex reformers, while concurring that “the two sexes are driven apart like the different nations at the building of the tower of Babel,” argued that this was not because men were somehow “naturally” brutish but rather because their socialization and their legal privilege and power allowed them to be so.

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