The Use of Pleasure: The History of Sexuality

Overview

In this sequel to The History of Sexuality, Volume I: An Introduction, the brilliantly original French thinker who died in 1984 gives an analysis of how the ancient Greeks perceived sexuality.

Throughout The Uses of Pleasure Foucault analyzes an irresistible array of ancient Greek texts on eroticism as he tries to answer basic questions: How in the West did sexual experience become a moral issue? And why were other appetites of the body, such ...
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Overview

In this sequel to The History of Sexuality, Volume I: An Introduction, the brilliantly original French thinker who died in 1984 gives an analysis of how the ancient Greeks perceived sexuality.

Throughout The Uses of Pleasure Foucault analyzes an irresistible array of ancient Greek texts on eroticism as he tries to answer basic questions: How in the West did sexual experience become a moral issue? And why were other appetites of the body, such as hunger, and collective concerns, such as civic duty, not subjected to the numberless rules and regulations and judgments that have defined, if not confined, sexual behavior?
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
In this absorbing study, Foucault discusses the attitudes toward sexuality prevalent in Hellenistic Greece and Rome. Classical Greece's view of sex as a means of obtaining individual pleasure faced increasing challenge in Hellenistic times. The love of boys now assumed more muted tones, often finding itself at odds with the highly valued ideals of marital fidelity and virginity. The Stoic approach, as Foucault demonstrates in a nuanced discussion, both resembled and differed from the asceticism of Christianity. This volume, perhaps the last that will appear of the author's posthumous History of Sexuality ( LJ 10/15/78; 12/1/85) manifests Foucault's powerful analytic ability. Though at times it draws very broad conclusions from the discussion of relatively few texts, it is still highly recommended. David Gordon, Social Philosophy & Policy Ctr., Bowling Green State Univ., Ohio
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780394729527
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 10/12/1986

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