chapter  19
13 Pages

Perverse Dynamics, Sexual Citizenship and the Transformation of Intimacy

At the opening of this chapter I must make clear a point or two about both its title and its contents. The title is composed of three segments, each of which is borrowed-some might say stolen-from three significant (though not flawless) recent texts, each of which deals broadly with some of the aspects of sexuality (though not explicitly with their spatiality) that I want to engage with here. The phrase ‘perverse dynamic’ is lifted from Jonathan Dollimore’s 1991 study, Sexual Dissidence: Augustine to Wilde, Freud to Foucault, where its conceptualisation and application takes up one-third of the book, sweeping through history, literature, psychology, sexology, sexual politics and postmodernity. Sexual Citizenship is the title of David Evans’ ambitious and wideranging survey of what he calls in the book’s subtitle ‘the material construction of sexualities’, and which takes up with homosexual, bisexual, transgender, children’s and women’s positions on the shifting map of sexual (and political) rights and obligations (Evans 1993). The final third of my chapter title comes from Anthony Giddens. In The Transformation of Intimacy: Sexuality, love and eroticism in modern societies (1992), Giddens thinks through the social and personal implications of various ‘sexual revolutions’, using his concepts of confluent love, the pure relationship and plastic sexuality to work towards theorising the links between intimacy and democracy.