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Sex and Difference in Ancient Greece and Rome$
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Mark Golden and Peter Toohey

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780748613199

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748613199.001.0001

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Pandora Unbound: A Feminist Critique of Foucault's History of Sexuality†

Pandora Unbound: A Feminist Critique of Foucault's History of Sexuality†

Chapter:
(p.167) 8 Pandora Unbound: A Feminist Critique of Foucault's History of Sexuality
Source:
Sex and Difference in Ancient Greece and Rome
Author(s):

Lin Foxhall

Publisher:
Edinburgh University Press
DOI:10.3366/edinburgh/9780748613199.003.0008

The influence of Michel Foucault's writings on sexuality, especially The History of Sexuality (1978–1986) on subsequent studies of sexuality, gender and the discourses of power and oppression, has been profound. In particular, Foucault has revolutionised the study of the social history of classical antiquity, where, with fifth–fourth century bc Athens, he ultimately decided to begin his investigations. He provides an analytical framework that can be expanded to explore the implications of sex and gender in the whole of social life. Foucault fashioned his analytical ‘techniques’ over a lifetime of archaeology, genealogy and ethics. This chapter presents a feminist critique of his History of Sexuality, and re-evaluates sexuality as a part of personal and political identity through the social acts of constructing gender, whose meanings change with context. It also examines the concepts of time and monumentality, the constitution and political construction of households, and how sexuality is related to socialisation and power.

Keywords:   Michel Foucault, sexuality, History of Sexuality, gender, power, oppression, households, socialisation, time, monumentality

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