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SEX & SEXUALITY, 1640-1940
Literary, Medical and Sociological Perspectives

Part 2: Romantic friendships and lesbian relationships in literature and history

Sex and Sexuality makes available a broad range of rare printed texts describing changing attitudes towards sex and the body.  Part 2 was the direct result of discussions with Terry Castle and Emma Donoghue to offer material describing the whole spectrum of same sex relations between women from romantic friendship to lesbian couples.  We offer 65 texts covering:

  • The treatment of classical writings by Sappho, Juvenal and Ovid - the way in which their texts were translated tells us a lot about changes in attitude towards homosexuality.
  • Historical accounts describing sexual practices in Turkey and the 'Orient' including works by Rycaut, Tavernier, Poussin, Hamilton, and Bourdeille.
  • Works on uranism, lesbianism and homosexuality by Xavier Mayne, Raffalovich and J A Symonds.
  • Literary treatments of female same sex relations including Jean Barrin's Venus in the Cloister (1683), Jane Barker's The Lining of the Patch-work Screen (1726), and Eliza Haywood's Cleomira (1722) and Cleomelia (1727).
  • A full range of works by John Cleland - including The Dictionary of Love (1753), Memoirs of a Coxcomb (1885) and Memoirs of Fanny Hill (1888) - depicting every type of sexual relationship.
  • Writings by Diderot (including Les Bijoux Indiscrets and La Religieuse); Barbara Montague (A description of Millenium Hall); Eliza Jeary (Marina and Amelia); Charlotte Lennox; Elizabeth Steele; Pierre Ambroise Choderlos de Laclos; Elizabeth Rowe; Nicholas Chorier (Satyre sotadique); and others.
"This series will enhance our understanding of the sexual enlightenment and the way in which individuals have negotiated their sexual practices throughout the course of history."
Marie Mulvey-Roberts, Consultant Editor

Digital Guide
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