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(ebook) Sex and Reason

Sexual drives are rooted in biology, but we don't act on them blindly. Indeed, as the eminently readable judge and legal scholar Richard Posner shows, we make quite rational choices about sex, based on the costs and benefits perceived. Drawing on the fields of biology, law, history, religion, and economics, this sweeping study examines societies from ancient Greece to today's Sweden and issues from masturbation, incest taboos, date rape, and gay marriage to Baby M. The first comprehensive approach to sexuality and its social controls, Posner's rational choice theory surprises, explains, predicts, and totally absorbs. Table of Contents: Introduction Part One: The History of Sexuality 1. Theoretical Sexology The Development of the Field Social Constructionism (with a Glance at Gender Disorders) Other Threads in the Multidisciplinary Tapestry 2. Autres Temps, Autres Moeurs The History of Western Sexual Mores The Sexual Mores of Non-Western Cultures 3. Sexuality and Law Part Two: A Theory of Sexuality 4. The Biology of Sex The Biological Basis and Character of "e;Normal"e; Sex The Biology of "e;Deviant"e; Sex Conclusion and Critique 5. Sex and Rationality The Benefits of Sex The Costs of Sex Complementarity of Sexual Practices 6. The History of Sexuality from the Perspective of Economics Greek Love and the Institutionalization of Pederasty Monasticism, Puritanism, and Christian Sex Ethics Swedish Permissiveness Three Stages in the Evolution of Sexual Morality 7. Optimal Regulation of Sexuality The Model of Morally Indifferent Sex Elaborated The Externalities of Sex Incest and Revulsion The Efficacy of Sexual Regulations Designing an Optimal Punishment Scheme for Sex Crimes The Political Economy of Sexual Regulation 8. Moral Theories of Sexuality Are Moral Theories Falsifiable? Christian and Liberal Theories of Sex Sexual Radicals Part Three: The Regulation of Sexuality 9. Marriage and the Channeling of Sex Restrictions on Marrying Regulating Nonmarital Sex 10. The Control of Pregnancy Contraception Abortion 11. Homosexuality: The Policy Questions The Phenomenon Reconsidered Relations between Consenting Adults: Sodomy Laws and Homosexual Marriage Discrimination against Homosexuals, with Particular Reference to Military Service 12. The Sexual Revolution in the Courts From Griswold v. Connecticut to Roe v. Wade Bowers v. Hardwick and Beyond 13. Erotic Art, Pornography, and Nudity The Economy of Erotic Representation The Social Consequences of Pornography Deciding What-If Anything-to Punish 14. Coercive Sex Sexual Abuse of Adults Sexual Abuse of Children 15. Separating Reproduction from Sex Adoption Artificial Insemination and the Issue of Surrogate Motherhood Eugenics and Population Conclusion Acknowledgements Index Reviews of this book: [Posner] is one of the most distinguished and prolific legal thinkers of his generation [and this is an] extraordinary book...Like [George Bernard] Shaw, he combines a passion for exposing humbug and pseudo-profundity with an odd but genuine sort of social compassion, a delight in shocking the self-righteous with a love of human diversity and freedom...We will remember, and profit by, the wit and the courage of his attacks on bigotry, folly, and cruelty.--Martha C. Nussbaum, New RepublicReviews of this book: An incisive tour through theories of sexuality and legal regulation of such matters as marriage, pregnancy, homosexuality, sexual revolution in the courts, erotic art, pornography and nudity, sexual abuse, and the separation of reproduction from sex...At a time when intellectual shoddiness permeates our highest court, [Posner] is a true philosopher of law.--Carlin Romano, Washington Post Book World
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