Roman Homosexuality: Ideologies of Masculinity in Classical Antiquity / Edition 1

Roman Homosexuality: Ideologies of Masculinity in Classical Antiquity / Edition 1

by Craig A. Williams
     
 

ISBN-10: 0195125053

ISBN-13: 9780195125054

Pub. Date: 06/28/1999

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

This book provides a thoroughly documented discussion of ancient Roman ideologies of masculinity and sexuality with a focus on ancient representations of sexual experience between males. It gathers a wide range of evidence from the second century B.C. to the second century A.D.—above all from such literary texts as courtroom speeches, love poetry, philosophy,

Overview

This book provides a thoroughly documented discussion of ancient Roman ideologies of masculinity and sexuality with a focus on ancient representations of sexual experience between males. It gathers a wide range of evidence from the second century B.C. to the second century A.D.—above all from such literary texts as courtroom speeches, love poetry, philosophy, epigram, and history, but also graffiti and other inscriptions as well as artistic artifacts—and uses that evidence to reconstruct the contexts within which Roman texts were created and had their meaning. The book takes as its starting point the thesis that in order to understand the Roman material, we must make the effort to set aside any preconceptions we might have regarding sexuality, masculinity, and effeminacy.

Williams' book argues in detail that for the writers and readers of Roman texts, the important distinctions were drawn not between homosexual and heterosexual, but between free and slave, dominant and subordinate, masculin and effeminate as conceived in specifically Roman terms. Other important questions addressed by this book include the differences between Roman and Greek practices and ideologies; the influence exerted by distinctively Roman ideals of austerity; the ways in which deviations from the norms of masculine sexual practice were negotiated both in the arena of public discourse and in real men's lives; the relationship between the rhetoric of "nature" and representations of sexual practices; and the extent to which same-sex marriages were publicly accepted.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780195125054
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA
Publication date:
06/28/1999
Series:
Ideologies of Desire Series
Edition description:
Older Edition
Pages:
416
Product dimensions:
9.00(w) x 6.00(h) x 1.20(d)

Table of Contents

Abbreviationsxi
Introduction3
Homosexuality, Heterosexuality, and Bisexuality4
Representation and Reality9
The Question of Diachronic Change11
Past and Present13
The Script of Masculinity14
1Roman Traditions: Slaves, Prostitutes, and Wives15
The Protocols of Masculine Behavior17
Boys and Girls19
Dirty Jokes28
Slaves, Male and Female30
Slaves in Plautus34
Slaves and Luxury37
Prostitutes, Male and Female38
Men and Their Wives47
Jupiter and Ganymede56
Hadrian and Antinous60
2Greece and Rome62
"Greek" Love: Pederasty and the Gymnasium63
How "Greek" Was Pederasty?64
The Appeal of Youth72
Mature Males as Sexual Objects77
Exoleti83
The Example of Priapus: The Bigger the Better86
Visual Evidence91
3The Concept of Stuprum96
The Language of Stuprum and Pudicitia97
Homosexual versus Heterosexual Stuprum101
Stuprum and Reputation103
Wartime Rape and Prostitution104
Wives and Children107
Stuprum and Masculinity109
Pederasty and Adultery113
Adultery and Pederasty in the Aeneid115
The Law on Stuprum119
4Effeminacy and Masculinity125
Signifiers of Effeminacy: Softness and Excessive Grooming127
Virtus and Impertum: Masculinity and Dominion132
Masculine Dominion over Foreigners and Women135
Masculinity and Self-Control138
Masculinity, Effeminacy, and Sexual Practices142
Other Voices153
5Sexual Roles and Identities160
Differences from Greek Traditions161
Viri: Real Men163
Labels and Categories for "Men"166
Labels for the Penetrated Man: Impudicus, Pathicus, and Cinaedus172
Stereotypes of the Cinaedus: Effeminacy and "Disease"179
The Double Standard181
Boys versus Cinaedi183
Appearances and Reputation188
The Law193
Alternative Strategies195
Fellatores and Cunnilingi: The Problem of Oral Sex197
Crossing Boundaries203
The Cinaedus: Passive Homosexual or Gender Deviant?209
Cinaedi Desiring Men215
The Question of "Subculture"218
Conclusions225
Appendix 1The Rhetoric of Nature and Same-Sex Practices231
Animal Behavior232
Contra Naturam234
Appendix 2Marriage between Males245
Appendix 3A Note on the Sources253
Notes259
Works Cited367
Index of Passages Cited376
General Index391

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