Sex – Lessons from History: A brisk history of sex in western culture

Fern Riddell’s book, written in clear and chatty prose, reminds us that debates around sex are nothing new

Fern Riddell’s Sex – Lessons from History presents a rendition of ‘ordinary people’s sexual culture’ in history. Photograph: Getty Images

Fern Riddell’s Sex – Lessons from History presents a rendition of ‘ordinary people’s sexual culture’ in history. Photograph: Getty Images

“Understanding the lives of our ancestors, their passions and their desires, is a fundamental necessity to understanding the problems in our own sexual culture,” writes Dr Fern Riddell in the introduction to this brisk history of sex in western culture.

Riddell, a high-profile cultural historian, with expertise in sex in the Victorian and Edwardian eras, has written this book, in part, to remind us that debates around sex – who should be having it, where and with whom – are nothing new, but also to present a rendition of “ordinary people’s sexual culture” in history.

The Irish Times
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