The Invention of Heterosexual Culture

The Invention of Heterosexual Culture

by Louis-Georges Tin

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The rise of heterosexual culture and the resistance it met from feudal lords, church fathers, and the medical profession.See more details below


The rise of heterosexual culture and the resistance it met from feudal lords, church fathers, and the medical profession.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"The author writes lucidly and engagingly, and succeeds in making heterosexual culture visible across a longue durée. In a final lively chapter, he demonstrates how, in the 20th century, even educationalists got in on the act,
participating in the progressive "heterosexualization" of French culture by, among other things, promoting eco-education over single-sex schooling… This ability to synthesise and to range widely sets Tin's book apart from previous studies aimed at divesting heterosexuality of its magic and claims to universality."
Times Higher Education

The MIT Press

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What People are saying about this

From the Publisher

"This book's ambition concerns nothing less than the birth of our modern social order. While the 'unnaturalness' of heterosexuality is by now a cardinal rule in sexuality studies, this book makes the enormous contribution of tracing the lineaments of that transition; it is in essence an account of how heterosexuality became, as the book rightly terms it, a 'cult object.' Studded with stunning insights, this book masks its erudition with fluid and often beautiful writing, and manages to cover an enormous swath of Western culture without ever seeming either superficial or rushed. Destined to be debated, adored, and doubtless critiqued, this is one of the few books published in the last decade that can accurately be said to have opened up a new field of study" -- Jonathan David Katz,
Director, Doctoral Program in Visual Studies, State University of New York at

The MIT Press

"Louis-Georges Tin's breathtaking sprint through French literary history calls into question many of our laziest assumptions about our sexual past. By retrospectively inserting the term 'heterosexual' into the narrative of the Middle
Ages and Renaissance, he highlights how troublesome male-female love was considered to be by contrast with (platonic) male love, and identifies the moment when the balance of approval shifted across to the heterosexual couple. As much a polemic as a work of scholarship, The Invention of Heterosexual Culture
provides copious material with which to dismantle homophobic myths about the nature and origins of Western Christian culture." -- Gregory Woods,
Professor of Gay and Lesbian Studies, Nottingham Trent University

The MIT Press

"Louis-Georges Tin's The Invention of Heterosexual
achieves with remarkable efficacy its stated ambition: to prompt heterosexual culture to become more self-conscious of its historical construction.
The lucid and jargon-free prose makes for a pleasurable reading that grips and delights; the solid argument lays down the foundation for studies that are sure to follow through with the historical examination of heterosexual culture." --
Rodolphe el-Khoury
, University of Toronto

The MIT Press

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