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Tuesday 26 June 2012

Podcasting Stella

The latest LSE Review of Books podcast - Gender and Feminism - includes an interview I did for them on Stella Browne, feminism, and reproductive rights (though I'm a bit sorry that length considerations have led to my discussion of her relations with the Communist Party being edited out).

Tuesday 12 June 2012

Return of a classic foundational work

I observe that a new, expanded edition of Jeff Week's pioneering Sex, Politics and Society: The Regulations of Sexuality Since 1800  is due out at the end of this month. This is very exciting news. Weeks has always been an inspiration to me and historians in the field owe him an enormous debt, though one that is perhaps unacknowledged for the reasons Doris Lessing suggested in Walking in the Shade:
Very often do we see this: people acknowledging every source of their inspiration but the most important one. I think the reason for this is not a reluctance to give acknowledgements where they are due, as much as that the originating impression is so strong it becomes a part of the inspired one.
While I have a similar overview coming out later this year, I think that this demonstrates the extent to which the history of sexuality has developed since the first edition of Sex, Politics and Society in 1981, and I am sure that there will be enough in the way of differences of emphasis and interpretation between our two perspectives to stimulate productive debate and further research.