Sexuality

Sexuality

Sexuality

Sexuality

Synopsis

For over twenty years, Sexualityhas provided a cutting edge introduction to debates about sexualities, gender, and intimate life. Previous editions included pioneering discussions of the historical shaping of sexuality, identity politics, the rise of fundamentalism, the social impact of AIDS, the influence of the new genetics, 'global sex', queer theory, 'sex wars', the debates about values, new patterns of intimacy, and much more. In this new edition,

Jeffrey Weeks offers a thorough update of these debates, and introduces new concepts and issues. Globalization is now a key way of understanding the reshaping of sexual life, and is discussed in relation to global flows, neo-liberalism, new forms of opposition, cosmopolitanism and the heated debates around sex trafficking and sex tourism. Arguments about the regulation and control of sexuality, and the intersection of various dimensions of power and domination are contextualised by a sustained argument about the importance of agency in remaking sexual and intimate life. In particular, new forms of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer politics, and the high impact of the debates about same-sex marriage are explored. These controversies, in turn, feed into debates about what is 'transgressive', 'normal', 'ordinary'; into the nature of heter-normativity; and into the meanings of diversity and choice. To conclude, the book turns to questions of values and ethics, recognition, sexual citizenship and human sexual rights.

This book displays the succinctness, clarity and comprehensiveness for which Jeffrey Weeks has become well known. It will appeal to a wide range of readers internationally.

Excerpt

Sex is an either/or phenomenon – appealing or appalling, rarely in
between.

Murray S. Davis (1983: 87)

Ideas, not genes, make us what we are. Our dna is not very different
from those of our kin, but what we do – or say – with it has formed our
fate.

Steve Jones (2009: 44)

We speak of sexuality today as never before. in the past who could speak of sex and the body was tightly regulated – Churches and states, yes, the medical profession, usually, poets and novelists, perhaps. That did not stop the masses thinking about it, or living and doing it, but their voices were rarely heard or when heard not listened to. Now we have a mass democracy speaking of sex: through the globalized media, on television in chat shows, confessional programmes, soap operas, reality shows, documentaries and advertisements; on the web in chat rooms, social networks, blogs and vlogs; and in the myriad forums and intimacies of everyday life. We can all claim to be experts today, true to our selves in our own fashion.

But the more expert we become in talking about sexuality, the greater the difficulties we often seem to encounter in trying to . . .

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