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Macmillan Higher Education Palgrave Higher Education

Sex, Gender and Social Change in Britain since 1880

Edition 2nd Edition
ISBN 9780230297807
Publication Date December 2012
Formats Hardcover Ebook Paperback 
Publisher Palgrave
Series Gender and History

Sexual attitudes and behaviour have changed radically in Britain between the Victorian era and the twenty-first century. However, Lesley A. Hall reveals how slow and halting the processes of change have been, and how many continuities have persisted under a façade of modernity.

Thoroughly revised, updated and expanded, the second edition of this established text:
• explores a wide range of relevant topics including marriage, homosexuality, commercial sex, media representations, censorship, sexually transmitted diseases and sex education
• features an entirely new last chapter which brings the narrative right up to the present day
• provides fresh insights by bringing together further original research and recent scholarship in the area.

Lively and authoritative, this is an essential volume for anyone studying the history of sexual culture in Britain during a period of rapid social change.

LESLEY A. HALL is Senior Assistant Archivist at the Wellcome Library, London, UK, and Honorary Lecturer in History of Medicine at University College London, UK. She has published extensively on issues of gender and sexuality.

The Victorian Background
Social Purity and Evolving Sex in the 1880s
Scientific Sex, Unspeakable Oscar and Insurgent Women in the 'Naughty Nineties'
Degenerating Nation? Anxieties and Protests in a New Century
Divorce, Disease and War
Roars of Rebellion, Roars of Reaction: The Ambivalence of the Twenties
Population Fears and Progressive Agendas During the Thirties
War and the Welfare State
Domestic Ideology and Undercurrents of Change in the Fifties
Swinging? For Whom? The Sixties and Seventies
Approaching the Millennium
Into the New Millennium: Changes and Continuities
Coda: Sex, Gender and Social Change in Britain: What Next for the Historian?
Recommended Further Reading


Praise for the second edition: 'A most welcome revision and updating of Hall's classic and much used work.' – Anna Clark, University of Minnesota, USA
'An excellent and comprehensive revision of the original text ... will undoubtedly become again a leading tour de force in the field.' – Sue Morgan, University of Chichester, UK
Praise for the first edition: 'A super text which draws together a number of themes previously neglected – a good addition to any social history course.' – Yvonne Brown, Glasgow Caledonian University, UK
' ... one of a few rare books which can be enjoyed by the general reader, used as an undergraduate text, offer fresh insights to social historians and indicate further lines of enquiry for future researchers ... This is history written with transparent warmth and humanity – it will undoubtedly give pleasure to all who are fortunate enough to read it.' – Paula Bartley, Reviews in History
'Hall's credentials for marshalling great quantities of information on her topic are impeccable.' – Times Literary Supplement
'Excellent text, well written, comprehensive in content, accessible to students.' – Paula Bartley, University of Wolverhampton, UK
'This is an excellent book; superbly well informed but not weighted down with detail ... It is also lively and entertaining.' – Chris Nottingham, School of Social Sciences, Glasgow Caledonian University. UK
'Wide ranging and accurate coverage of complex and sensitive issues regarding sexuality, gender and social change.' – Melinda Barone, University College Salford, UK
'There are few better people better placed to give an overview of the histories of sexuality since the late nineteenth century than Lesley Hall. As a senior medical archivist at the Wellcome Trust Library and author, she has been at the forefront of new historical work on sexuality over the last ten years. The value of this book is that it displays the breadth of recent historical research into fields of enquiry that can still sometimes seem almost impossible to illuminate. Sex, Gender and Social Change since 1880 demonstrates an accumulation of knowledge of British sexuality that would have amazed an observer only a decade ago.' – Sam Pryke, Sexualities
' ... Sex, Gender and Social Change in Britain since 1880 is an ideal textbook for students. It offers the best overview of the development of sexuality in Twentieth-century Britain, and promises to become essential reading for anyone interested in the topic, or to anyone hoping to teach a course on the topic. There is enough primary material to make important contributions to the field of the history of sexuality, and the synthesis of previous historical writing, which was long overdue, is both thought-provoking and convincing.' – Ivan Dalley Crozier, Journal of the History of Sexuality
'This is an excellent overview which fills a gap in the market.' – C. Collette, Edge Hill University College, UK
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