By John Gagnon
An Interpretation of Desire bargains a bracing number of significant essays through John Gagnon, one of many best and most galvanizing figures in sexual learn. Spanning his paintings from the Nineteen Seventies, while he explored the concept sexuality is mediated via social procedures and categories—thus paving the best way for Foucault—and then extending via his flip to problems with hope throughout the Nineties, those essays represent an important entrée to the research of sexuality within the 20th century.
Gagnon might be top often called the coauthor of Sexual Conduct—a booklet that brought the seminal notion of sexual scripting—and as one of many coauthors of The Social association of Sexuality, a foundational paintings that's greatly thought of to be crucial examine of human sexual habit because the Kinsey record. The essays gathered right here first hint the effect of scripting concept on Gagnon, outlining the unconventional departure he took from the dominant organic and psychiatric types of intercourse examine. the quantity then turns to newer essays that ponder such vexed matters as homosexuality, the theories of Sigmund Freud, HIV, damaging intercourse, and the social facets of sexually transmitted illnesses.
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Additional resources for An Interpretation of Desire: Essays in the Study of Sexuality (Worlds of Desire: The Chicago Series on Sexuality, Gender, and Culture)
The sky was bleached milky white, the edges of red buildings quivered in the heat, whereas the edge between shadow and light was hard, the asphalt sucked at the soles of shoes. The wind blowing from the west was thick with mutant molecules. It carried the taint from the packing houses and tanneries and the heavy metals and complex organic waste from the vents of factories. The enamel finishes baked off the cars as they spewed lead, carbon, and sulfur out of their exhausts. Future cancers were in every breath.
This is not to say that there were not some who were concerned with the sexual, both medically and morally, earlier in the nineteenth century. There exist some fragmentary studies of the sexual life of peasants, the dangers of masturbation, and, most commonly, the social conditions of prostitution and venereal diseases. But it was largely toward the end of that century in Europe that there was a maj or cultural movement cast in a scientific-medical form that directly chal lenged previously held beliefs about the role of the sexual in human life.
I do not remember a primal scene. There was an antiaircraft battery stationed in front of the apartment building, between the boardwalk and the beach, until 1943 . The night sky during the blackout was disturbingly full of stars. I learned how distant they were, and I was disturbed in a different way. I started school wearing short pants and was regularly chased home by redheaded Jimmy O'Reilly, whose father had taught him how to box. My father said I had to fight my own battles, so I took to skulking home by back alleys.