The history of sexuality: An introduction, volume I
by Foucault, Michel (1978)
By placing the advent of the age of repression in the seventeenth century, after hundreds of years of open spaces and free expression, one adjusts it to coincide with the development of capitalism: itbecomes an integral part of the bourgeois order. The minor chronicle of sex and its trials is transposed into the ceremonious history of the modes of production; its trifling aspect fades from view. A principle of explanation emerges after the fact: if sex is so rigorously repressed, this is because it is incompatible with a general and intensive work imperative. At a time when labor capacity was being systematically exploited,how could this capacity be allowed to dissipate itself in pleasurable pursuits, except in those-reduced to a minimum- that enabled it to reproduce itself? Sex and its effects are perhaps not so easily deciphered; on the other hand, their repression, thus reconstructed, is easily analyzed. (p.5)
KeywordsFoucault, Sexuality, Repression, Power, Resistance, Postmodernism, Poststructuralism
ThemesHistory of Sexuality, Foucault Citations
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