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The Sexual State

Sexuality and Scottish Governance 1950-80

Roger Davidson, Gayle Davis

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An important contribution to the sexual history of Britain

This valuable study fills a gap in our understanding of modern Scottish, and British, Society, providing as it does a vital perspective on Scotland's sexual history and its political and social context. It is unique in exploring the period from 1950 to 1980, covering the immediate post-war and Scotland’s sexual ‘coming-of-age’. It charts a steady political growth from a deeply moralistic policy framework towards a less judgmental, global and scientific context.

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Contents

Tables
Acknowledgements
Abbreviations
Chapter 1 Introduction
PART I SEXUAL OFFENCES
Chapter 2 Female Prostitution
Chapter 3 Homosexual Law Reform, 1950-67
Chapter 4 Homosexual Law Reform, 1967-80
PART II REPRODUCTIVE ISSUES
Chapter 5 Abortion
Chapter 6 Family Planning
PART III DISEASE AND ENLIGHTENMENT
Chapter 7 Sexual Health
Chapter 8 School Sex Education
PART IV SEX AND CENSORSHIP
Chapter 9 Moral Censorship and the State in the 1950s
Chapter 10 Sex, Censorship and Scottish Governance in the 1960s
Chapter 11 Policing Pornography and Obscenity in the 1970s
Chapter 12 Conclusion
Sources and Select Bibliography
Index.

About the Author

Roger Davidson is Emeritus Professor of Social History at the University of Edinburgh. He has published widely on the history of medical and governmental responses to sexual issues since 1870. He is the author of Dangerous Liaisons: A Social History of Venereal Disease in Twentieth-Century Scotland, Routledge (2000), and co-editor of Sex, Sin and Suffering: Venereal Disease and European Society since 1870, Routledge (2001) and Shaping Sexual Knowledge: A Cultural History of Sex Education in Twentieth- Century Europe, Routledge (2009).

Dr Gayle Davis is Senior Lecturer in the History of Medicine at the University of Edinburgh, and Chair of the Society for the Social history of Medicine. She has published on the social history of medicine and sexuality, including 'The Cruel Madness of Love': Sex, Syphilis and Psychiatry in Scotland, 1880-1930 (Rodopi, Amsterdam and Atlanta, 2008). She is also author of A Modern History of the Body, to be published in 2015.

Reviews

Rich and original... this is a major contribution to Scottish history. It also provides indispensable insights into the complexities of British and European sexual history.

- Jeffrey Weeks, Emeritus Professor of Sociology, London South Bank University

Brings considerable nuance and regional comparative element to … the contemporary history of sexuality in Britain. … Indispensible … [It] should be valued by all working in this field.

- Sean Brady, Social History of Medicine