The Geography of Perversion: Male-To-Male Sexual Behavior Outside the West and the Ethnographic Imagination, 1750-1918 / Edition 1

The Geography of Perversion: Male-To-Male Sexual Behavior Outside the West and the Ethnographic Imagination, 1750-1918 / Edition 1

by Rudi C Bleys, Nicola Humble
     
 

Recent years have seen enormous attention devoted to the history of sexuality in the Western world. But how has the West conceived of non-western societies been influenced by these other traditions? The Geography of Perversion and Desire is the first historical study to demonstrate convincingly that the representation cultural otherness, as found in European

See more details below

Overview

Recent years have seen enormous attention devoted to the history of sexuality in the Western world. But how has the West conceived of non-western societies been influenced by these other traditions? The Geography of Perversion and Desire is the first historical study to demonstrate convincingly that the representation cultural otherness, as found in European thought from the Enlightenment through modern times, is closely interrelated with modern constructions of homosexual identity. Travel reports and early ethnographic accounts of cross-gender roles in the Americas, Africa, and Asia corroborated the 18th century construction of the sodomite identity. Similarly, the late 19th-century construction of the third sex provoked much anthropological speculation on to genetic versus societal nature of male-to-male sexual relations, a precursor of current essentialist versus constructionist debates. An invaluable contribution to the ongoing debates on cultural and sexual otherness, this volume unravels how the categories of the modern sodomite and later homosexual were inextricably intertwined with essentialist definitions of racial identity. In encyclopedic detail, Bleys traces how cross-cultural records were collected, created, structured, manipulated, excerpted, reformulated, and omitted in interaction with changing beliefs about male-to-male sexuality. Focusing in such subjects as puritanism, sodomy, and ethnicity in colonial North America; cross-gender behavior and hermaphrodditism; the semiotics of genitalia; and the parameters of sexual science, The Geography of Perversion and Desire is a breathtakingly thorough, cross cultural history of sexual categories.

Drawing on travel reports and early ethnographic accounts, The Geography of Perversion and Desire presents the first historical study to demonstrate convincingly that the representation of cultural otherness, as found in European thought from the Enlightenment to modern times, is closely interrelated with modern constructions of homosexual identity.

Read More

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780814712658
Publisher:
New York University Press
Publication date:
07/01/1996
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
480
Product dimensions:
6.05(w) x 9.20(h) x 0.96(d)

Meet the Author

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements
List of Abbreviations
Introduction1
Historiography and context3
1The Pre-Enlightenment Legacy17
2The Enlightenment, Natural History and the Sodomite (c. 1750-c. 1815)63
3Race, Sex and the Semiotics of Genitalia (c. 1810-c. 1870)110
4'Mapping' Homosexual Vice (c. 1860-c. 1918)145
5Homosexual Emancipation and the Paradoxes of Universality (c. 1860-c. 1918)207
Conclusion266
Bibliography273
Primary sources273
Secondary literature298
Index321

Read More

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >