Intimate Matters: A History of Sexuality in America, 3rd edition

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Reviewed by Madison Sullivan, NCSU Libraries Fellow


This is the 25th anniversary edition of the first huge scholarly survey of the history of sexuality in the United States (I think it still might be the only one). The book chronicles policy, mores, laws, and, at times, hilarious or truly heartbreaking personal accounts of American sexuality from the 1600s onward. While it's an incredibly entertaining read, it's not nearly as lascivious as it sounds (sorry to disappoint!). I'm able to better understand contemporary debates and perceptions surrounding reproductive rights and American sexuality within the historical contextualization it presents.