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Dr. Susan Sage Heinzelman, Director 2505 University Avenue, A4900, Burdine Hall 536, Austin Texas 78712 • 512-471-5765

Spring 2007

WGS 345 • 38-History of Sexuality in America-W

Unique Days Time Location Instructor


Course Description

This course surveys the history of four centuries of American ideas about sex and sexuality. We will attempt to understand historical changes in conceptions of sexual desire, "normal" behavior, and sexual orientations. We will also examine the ways that sexuality has been regulated through various legal, social, and political means, and the ways it has been represented in the media. The class will challenge the notion that American history has moved from the repressive world of the Puritans to the more liberated, modern ideals of the twenty-first century. Readings are grouped chronologically, with about three weeks devoted to each century. Special attention is paid to readings that draw connections between sexuality and race, class, and gender. The class will be divided into three sections: Sex and Power, The Trouble With 'Normal,' and Does the Media Change How We Think About Sexuality?


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