Monday, August 13, 2012

The Desire to Regulate Desires

From Wikimedia Commons 

The lawyer and journalist Eric Berkowitz has written an excellent book entitled "Sex and Punishment: Four Thousand Years of Judging Desire" on how humanity devotes an extraordinary amount of time and effort to regulate human sexuality. 

Sara Wheeler has reviewed the book for the "Literary Review" and she points out:

What all this amounts to, in most of the human cultures that have ever existed, is the male fear of and wish to subjugate women.  
Continue reading Sara Wheeler's review here.

An excerpt of Berkowitz' book can be found on the Boing Boing website.

1 comment:

  1. This is a REALLY interesting book with many morsels of eye-popping information, often drawn from actual court cases of the time, allowing the people of the past to "speak". I found this little gem particularly interesting, considering so much of Hebrew law is similar to Assyrian law:

    "The Assyrian law mentioned above that allowed husbands to beat, whip, and mutilate their wives for misbehaving extended to anything short of killing them. Presumably, qualifying offenses included going about town unveiled. If only sexually available women, such as prostitutes and slaves, uncovered their heads in public, a respectable wife who did so would therefore be signaling her availability and, even worse, that her husband had lost control over her. For that, wives would suffer violence." p 28