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Sexual Antipodes: Enlightenment Globalization and the Placing of Sex (review)

Sexual Antipodes: Enlightenment Globalization and the Placing of Sex (review) book reviews Pamela Cheek. Sexual Antipodes: Enlightenment, Globalization and the Placing of Sex. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2003. xi + 246 pp. Pamela Cheek's Sexual Antipodes is a wide-ranging and ambitious study of how Enlightenment print culture used ideas of sexual order and disorder to imagine national and racial identities in France, Britain, and the South Seas. The book argues that ideas about the role sexuality should play in public life shaped French and British national identity in the eighteenth century and extends these arguments to address the sexual organization of human variety or race in late Enlightenment thought. In the eighteenth century, Cheek claims, the "placement" of sexuality became an essential means of interpreting not only individual identity in Western Europe but also cultural identity and difference within a global frame that embraced the antipodes. Opposites, it seems, do more than attract. The argument is developed in two stages. The opening chapters outline the contesting visions of female publicity and domesticity that distinguished French and British national character in the eighteenth century. The prominent role of French women in cultural and courtly politics fostered the civility, politeness and sociability for which the French were celebrated, while British http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png French Forum University of Nebraska Press

Sexual Antipodes: Enlightenment Globalization and the Placing of Sex (review)

French Forum , Volume 29 (3) – Feb 3, 2004

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Publisher
University of Nebraska Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2005 by French Forum, Inc.
ISSN
1534-1836
Publisher site
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Abstract

book reviews Pamela Cheek. Sexual Antipodes: Enlightenment, Globalization and the Placing of Sex. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2003. xi + 246 pp. Pamela Cheek's Sexual Antipodes is a wide-ranging and ambitious study of how Enlightenment print culture used ideas of sexual order and disorder to imagine national and racial identities in France, Britain, and the South Seas. The book argues that ideas about the role sexuality should play in public life shaped French and British national identity in the eighteenth century and extends these arguments to address the sexual organization of human variety or race in late Enlightenment thought. In the eighteenth century, Cheek claims, the "placement" of sexuality became an essential means of interpreting not only individual identity in Western Europe but also cultural identity and difference within a global frame that embraced the antipodes. Opposites, it seems, do more than attract. The argument is developed in two stages. The opening chapters outline the contesting visions of female publicity and domesticity that distinguished French and British national character in the eighteenth century. The prominent role of French women in cultural and courtly politics fostered the civility, politeness and sociability for which the French were celebrated, while British

Journal

French ForumUniversity of Nebraska Press

Published: Feb 3, 2004

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