Gender Studies | Cultural Politics of Sexuality in the 20th Century
G704 | 28299 | Johnson, C


Of all the great innovations of the twentieth century, the emergence
of the modern discourse of sexuality must certainly rank highly in
terms of the effect it has had on the culture and politics of
everyday life.  This course examines the cultural and political
implications of sexuality’s emergence as a public discourse during
the twentieth century.  Specifically, it examines certain limit
cases in which the ostensibly private matters of sexual behavior and
sexual identity have given rise to very public controversies about
the cultural and political values of society at large.  For the
purposes of class discussion we will focus primarily on developments
in the United States.  Students are encouraged, however, to choose
individual paper topics that speak directly to their particular
research interests.  Readings will include the following:  Berlant’s
The Queen of American Goes To Washington City: Essays on Sex and
Citizenship, Bernstein’s Temporarily Yours: Intimacy, Authenticity
and the Commerce of Sex, Echols’ Hot Stuff: Disco and the Remaking
of American Culture, Edelman’s No Future: Queer Theory and the Death
Drive, Evans’ Personal Politics: The Roots of Women's Liberation in
the Civil Rights Movement & the New Left, Gould’s Moving Politics:
Emotion and ACT UP’s Fight against AIDS, Koestenbaum’s The Queen’s
Throat: Opera, Homosexuality and the Mystery of Desire, Love’s
Feeling Backward: Loss and the Politics of Queer History,
MacKinnon’s Toward a Feminist Theory of the State, Mumford’s
Interzones: Black/White Sex Districts in Chicago and New York in the
Early Twentieth Century, Regan’s When Abortion Was a Crime: Women,
Medicine, and Law in the United States, 1867-1973, Scott’s The
Politics of the Veil, Shah’s Contagious Divides: Epidemics and Race
in San Francisco's Chinatown, and Stein’s The Stranger Next Door:
The Story of a Small Community's Battle over Sex, Faith, and Civil
Rights.