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Orgasm and the West : a history of pleasure from the 16th century to the present

Author: Robert Muchembled
Publisher: Cambridge, UK ; Malden, MA : Polity Press, 2008.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
Can the orgasm be explained in historical terms? Robert Muchembled's book unearths fascinating sources which suggest that we need to look with a fresh eye at the past and realize that the sublimation of the erotic impulse was far more than simple religious ascetism - it was the hidden driving force of the West until the 1960s.
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Genre/Form: History
Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Robert Muchembled
ISBN: 0745638759 0745638767 9780745638751 9780745638768
OCLC Number: 234431953
Language Note: Translated from the French.
Notes: Originally published in French as L'Ogasme et L'Occident.
Description: x, 323 pages ; 24 cm
Contents: A Year of Pleasure --
Pt. I. Orgasm and the West --
1. Carnal Knowledge --
The birth of the individual --
Is it all down to sex? --
The conquest of female pleasure --
Pt. II. Imprints: Pleasure in Pain (Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries) --
2. Masculine, Feminine: Individuals and Their Bodies --
Representing and talking about oneself --
The fragility of the Self --
The role of women --
The fluidity of bodies --
3. Carnal Pleasures, Mortal Sins --
Forbidden passions --
The joys of sex --
Pleasure and sin --
Pt. III. Cycles: Vice and Virtue (1700-1960) --
4. The Eroticism of the Enlightenment --
The pornographic flood --
Sex within measure --
The art of the 'I' --
5. Beneath the Victorian Veil (1800-1960) --
Controlling sex --
Sexuality, a shameful, even fatal, sickness --
Through the looking glass --
Pt. IV. Revolutions? The Heritage of the Sixties --
6. The Era of Pleasure (From 1960 to Our Own Day) --
A sexual bombshell : the Kinsey Report --
The discovery of the female orgasm --
Towards a new sexual contract? --
Conclusion: The Narcissistic Society.
Responsibility: Robert Muchembled ; translated by Jean Birrell.
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Abstract:

Can the orgasm be explained in historical terms? An almost incommunicable individual emotion yet also a cultural reality, the orgasm is part of, but also escapes, collective experience. The history  Read more...

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"A bold book by a great historian." American Historical Review "A book that is readable AND sexy, the history of Orgasm and the West is the sort of cultural history that enables one to connect our Read more...

 
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