Sam Grace's Reviews > Controlling Desires: Sexuality in Ancient Greece and Rome

Controlling Desires by Kirk Ormand
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Nov 13, 09

bookshelves: academic, she-has-eggs, geeky-mythic-stuff, favorites, queerific
Recommended for: Anyone into Sexuality, Gender, or Classics - beginners welcome!
Read in November, 2009 — I own a copy, read count: 2

Don't be intimidated by the topic, this book is totally accessible and readable. Whether you are interested in the ancient world or just in better contextualizing contemporary ideas about sexuality, this book is great. He gives plenty of examples, and provides some endnotes to further reading, but it seems clear he intended for this book to be read by beginners as well as academics, and keeps the prose light and readable while walking you through concepts that will let you talk about this easily with experts.
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Reading Progress

01/13/2009 page 45
15.41% "This book is wonderful, and highly recommended to anyone interested in different cultural emphases on sexuality in the West. Not dry at all."
02/12/2009 page 60
20.55% "Still awesome."
03/09/2009 page 75
25.68% "He's rammed home (heh) the point about passivity and femininity over homosexuality and is moving onto legality."
03/18/2009 page 89
30.48% "This chapter talks about the trial of Neaira, which is dramatized in the YA book _The Courtesan's Daughter_ by Priscilla Galloway"
03/24/2009 page 102
34.93% "I'm up to the chapter on Philosophical Sex - Diotima, yay! No big surprises yet."
03/29/2009 page 106
36.3% "Chapter on philosophical sex is over, and there was some new info for me there towards the end"
04/06/2009 page 121
41.44% "He assumed the reader knew Sappho in this chapter (I did), and talked a lot about the change of emphasis from beloved to lover thru history."
04/21/2009 page 132
45.21% "Last chapter ended with female-female sex and how that's not really Aphrodite's thing ... in fact, not really any deity's thing."
04/27/2009 page 142
48.63% "reading the chapter on Rome and Roman Sex and LOVING the stuff on Priapus ... maybe I'm not as "over" Classical myths as I feared?"
07/20/2009 page 172
58.9% "I'm reading slow, but still totally engaged. This book rocks." 3 comments
07/27/2009 page 182
62.33% "So I liked the chapter on Legal and Illegal Roman Sex, but I was disappointed he didn't bring up woman-woman sex again, just to say, "none!""
08/25/2009 page 199
68.15% "This chapter is all about Catullus - everything I missed by focusing on the Greeks in college! Also, Catullus = Awesome."
08/31/2009 page 201
68.84% "Favorite new subheading: Catullus in Love, For Real This Time"
09/16/2009 page 214
73.29% "Woot! I'm on Ovid's lesbians!"
10/15/2009 page 225
77.05% "back to male perverts, I'm afraid. :-)"
10/24/2009 page 238
81.51% "is a stallion really so much to ask for a night of "not feeling it"?"
11/09/2009 page 255
87.33% "oooh tribades! Finally!"
11/13/2009 page 262
89.73% "homg, I'm in the epilogue. Don't ennnnnnnnnnnnnnd ..."
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