This nine-week online class explores the history of European sexuality from the First World War through today. Guided by nine lectures from Professor George L. Mosse, the course examines the origins of contemporary masculinity and the idealized "New Woman" and "New Man" of the twentieth century. Together we will examine how stereotypes of femininity and masculinity originated and how such concepts continue to influence public discourse.
Ten experts from around the world will introduce Mosse's lectures, including historians working in the Netherlands, France, the United Kingdom, Israel and the United States. Each week they put Mosse's work in context and explore contemporary scholarly discussions of the history of sexuality.
The reading for the course includes George L. Mosse's Nationalism and Sexuality: Middle-Class Morality and Sexual Norms in Modern Europe, which first appeared in 1984. A new edition will be published in the first volume of the Collected Works of George L. Mosse, with an introduction from UW–Madison historian Mary Louise Roberts. We will also read selections from the most recent scholarship on the history of gender and sexuality.
Weekly Lecture Topics
Week 1: Sexual Values, Political Ideologies, Manliness
Week 2: The Creation of Modern Masculinity
Week 3: The New Man in the Inter-War Years
Week 4: The New Man in Modern Revolutionary Movements: New Men, New Women, Bourgeoisie
Week 5: The Construction of Masculinity
Week 6: Stereotypes of Manhood
Week 7: Unmanliness
Week 8: Masculinity and Politics
Week 9: Towards a New Masculinity?