Bisexuality was intrinsic to the cultures of the ancient world. In both Greece and Roman, sexual relationships between men were acknowledged, tolerated and widely celebrated in literature and art. For the Greeks and Romans, homosexuality was not an exclusive choice, but alternative to and sometime simultaneous with the love of a woman. Drawing on a range of sources – from legal texts, inscriptions and medical documents to poetry and philosophical literature – Eva Cantarella reconstructs the bisexual cultures of Athens and Rome and compares them. She explores the psychological, social and cultural mechanisms that determined male sexual choice and considers the extent to which that choice was free, directed or coerced. She analyzes the link between social class and homosexuality, and assesses the impact of homosexual relations on heterosexual ones. In Greece the relationship between men and young boys was deemed the noblest of associations, a means of education and spiritual exaltation, though such relationships were regulated and never left to individual sponeneity. In Rome, however, the sexual ethic mirrored the political, males being domineering in love as in war. The critical sexual distinction was that between active and passive, the victims commonly being slaves or defeated enemies rather than young Roman freemen. Cantarella explains how the etiquette of bixexuality was corrupted over time and how homosexuality came to be regarded as an unnatural act when it was influenced by the pagan and Judeo-Christian traditions. The book also has chapters on love between women and the response of women to male homosexuality.
Un libro de Eva Cantarella en la categoría de Libros > Historia > Historia social y cultural