Sex and Sensuality in the Ancient World Publication date : September 8, 2011
Giulia Sissa is a professor at UCLA, with research interests in history, anthropology and philosophy in the Ancient World. She is the author of Le Plaisir et le Mal and L’Âme est un corps de femme.
“The Ancient Greeks and Romans were highly sensual. The Athenians and later the Romans developed a culture of sensuality that included every aspect we are familiar with: the art of loving, the quest for pleasure, the exemplary importance of women, homosexual love, phallic irony, etc. And that is why they can help us understand ourselves,” writes Giulia Sissa.
The Ancients have much to teach us about desire, pleasure and the difference between the sexes as well as about the fluidity of gender distinctions. What we need today are “teachers of pleasure” who can help us rediscover erotic politeness, sentimental discipline and voluptuous know-how.
• Curious, epicurean, sometimes crude, this book defends the sexuality of the Ancient world, while exploring its every facet: from banter to suicide, from flirtation to murder, from attraction to fury. A real treat!
• A manifesto committed to a new art of loving — freer, more inventive, more refined. An art that in both Greece and Rome emphasised the desiring, sexual body while eschewing rigid roles, genders and identities.