Changes Since the Victorian Era

Now that we took a glance back at the Victorian Era, I’d like to discuss views on sexuality in the modern era. How have things changed? What things have stayed the same? How will things change in the future with technology constantly improving? Also, as a side note, if you have any ideas while reading this, questions that might be interesting to have answered, or feedback I’d really appreciate hearing your reactions and you have to say or think. I’m going to use the same website as my last blog for the majority of this blog post and hopefully do an okay job of addressing the views on modern day sexuality.  Once again, I’ll cover the topics of sexual activity, masturbation, homosexuality, and prostitution.

Sexual activity and the way people view it has changed dramatically since the Victorian era. In fact, during the 1950’s a silent “sexual revolution” for females began with the writings of Simone De Beauvoir and Irene Walton.  These writings brought up the notion of indulging in sex purely for pleasure. The “growth of the Women’s Liberation Movement” and the introduction of Freud and his theories became popular at the time, contributing to this revolution. The 1960’s rolled along, bringing along the idea of leading lives filled with “sex, drugs, and rock and roll.” It wasn’t until the 1970’s that premarital sex was widely accepted.  Since then, the importance of female sexuality has been highlighted in many books, magazines, etc.

Masturbation is no longer looked at as a social illness. While it may not frequently be the subject of dinner conversations, according to the Transformation of Intimacy by Anthony Giddens, 90 percent of men and 40 percent of women have admitted to masturbating at some point in their life. (16) In some situations, masturbation is actually encouraged to seek sexual gratification while still remaining abstinent.

Homosexuality is controversy at its finest; however it has come a long way since the Victorian Era. Up until the 1980’s, people thought of homosexuality to be a disease caused by a dominant mother and weak father. Freud was undeniably popular at the time, and the fact that he argued that social ostracism was not appropriate when it came to the treatment of homosexuals influence some individuals’ personal opinions.  Now, people wonder if homosexuality is more so biological than a chosen lifestyle. I think it’s safe to say that homosexuals battle a lot of criticism in today’s society when it comes to issue like marriage and adoption; nevertheless they are earning respect and equal rights slowly but surely.

Prostitution is illegal today. It seems that now women seem less forced into this occupation and it’s more of a conscious choice.  It proves that a woman can control her own sexuality, and frequently you find prostitutes using the “it’s my body I can do what I want with it” excuse.  It’s unclear if prostitution has increased or decreased, but it does still exist in many regions.

These four things have clearly changed since the Victorian Era, and many others that I will soon address in a future blog entry.

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