A Global History of Sexuality: The Modern Era by Robert M. Buffington, Eithne Luibhéid, Donna J. Guy

By Robert M. Buffington, Eithne Luibhéid, Donna J. Guy

A international heritage of Sexuality offers a provocative, wide-ranging advent to the background of sexuality from the overdue eighteenth century to the current day.


  • Explores what sexuality has intended within the daily lives of people over the past 2 hundred years
  • Organized round 4 significant topics: the formation of sexual id, the legislation of sexuality by way of societal norms, the legislation of sexuality by means of associations, and the intersection of sexuality with globalization
  • Examines the subject from a comparative, worldwide standpoint, with well-chosen case reviews to light up the wider themes
  • Includes interdisciplinary contributions from favorite historians, sociologists, anthropologists, and sexuality reports scholars
  • Introduces very important theoretical options in a transparent, obtainable way

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Extra resources for A Global History of Sexuality: The Modern Era

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And they are more bound up in issues of sexuality than ever before. Halfway around the world, in South Africa, sexuality has become a matter of national politics and state formation in a dramatically different way. Constitutionalizing Nonnormative Sexuality: South Africa The Bill of Rights from the 1996 South African constitution includes this mandate: The state may not unfairly discriminate directly or indirectly against anyone on one or more grounds, including race, gender, sex, pregnancy, marital status, ethnic or social origin, colour, sexual orientation, age, disability, religion, conscience, belief, culture, language and birth.

The experiences of GLOW cofounder Linda Ngcobo highlight another failing of pre-1990s white, middle-class gay rights groups in South Africa: their inability to understand (much less acknowledge) the nonnormative sexualities that characterized same-sex behavior in black communities. For Linda and the cohort of “gay” men who grew up in the black townships in the 1970s and 1980s, the sex/gender system revolved loosely around three highly gendered identities: skesana, a boy who behaves like a girl and “likes to be fucked”; injonga, a man or boy “who makes the proposals and does the fucking”; and pantsula, a “tough” man or boy who penetrates skesanas under the assumption or pretext that they are female (McLean and Ngcobo 1995).

And both are linked in important ways to the decades-long struggle against apartheid, which remained in force until the early 1990s. Postapartheid South Africa, then, is an example of a nation imagined from the start as multicultural, multiracial, multisexual, and tolerant of difference. In this instance, the seemingly unavoidable intersection of sex and nation—so often a source of exclusions in nationalist discourse— has become a positive symbol of social progress and a proud new national identity.

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