Sex in History

Front Cover
Abacus, 1989 - Sex customs - 488 pages
21 Reviews

SEX IN HISTORY chronicles the pleasures- and perils- of the flesh from the time of mankind's distant ancestors to the modern day; from a sexual act which was bried, crude and purposeful, to the myriad varieties of contemporary sexual mores.

Reay Tannahill's scholarly, yet accessible study ranges from the earliest form of contraception (one Egyptian concoction included crocodile dung) to some latter- day misconceptions about it- like the men who joined their lovers in taking the pill 'just to be on the safe side.' It surveys all manner of sexual practice, preference and position (the acrobatic 'wheelbarrow' position, the strenuous 'hovering butterflies' position...) and draws on souces as diverse as THE ADMIRABLE DISCOURSES OF THE PLAIN GIRL, the EXHIBTION OF FEMALE FLAGELLANTS, IMPORTANT MATTERS OF THE JADE CHAMBER and THE ROMANCE OF CHASTISEMENT.

Whether writing on androgyny, courtly love, flagellation or zoophilia, Turkish eunuch's Greek dildoes, Taoist sex manuals or Japanses geisha girls, Reay Tannahill is consistently enlightening and entertaining.

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Review: Sex in History

User Review  - Kyla Li - Goodreads

I am sorry I didn't like this book. Tannahill's prose is very engaging, and it would have been a pleasure to read except for a few things. -The book was published in 1980, which means that her entire ... Read full review

Review: Sex in History

User Review  - Ann Evans - Goodreads

This book was written some time ago, and more modern books have recently discovered information not available to Tannahill, but it is fascinating in that it debunks commonly held beliefs, and goes ... Read full review

About the author (1989)

After a varied career, Reay Tannahill was asked to write a short illustrated history of Regency England. Then she wrote several books - both non-fiction and fiction. PASSING GLORY won the RNA Romantic Novel of the Year award. She died in December 2007.

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