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This is the first account of sexual liberation in Eastern Europe during the Cold War. Kateřina Lišková reveals how, in the case of Czechoslovakia, important aspects of sexuality were already liberated during the 1950s - abortion was legalized, homosexuality decriminalized, the female orgasm came into experts' focus - and all that was underscored by an emphasis on gender equality. However, with the coming of Normalization, gender discourses reversed and women were to aspire to be caring mothers and docile wives. Good sex was to cement a lasting marriage and family. In contrast to the usual Western accounts highlighting the importance of social movements to sexual and gender freedom, here we discover, through the analysis of rich archival sources covering forty years of state socialism in Czechoslovakia, how experts, including sexologists, demographers, and psychologists, advised the state on population development, marriage and the family to shape the most intimate aspects of people's lives.
Dagmar Herzog - author of Cold War Freud: Psychoanalysis in an Age of Catastrophes
Melissa Feinberg - author of Curtain of Lies: The Battle over Truth in Stalinist Eastern Europe
Dan Healey - author of Homosexual Desire in Revolutionary Russia: The Regulation of Sexual and Gender Dissent
Gil Eyal - author of Making Capitalism Without Capitalists: The New Ruling Elites in Eastern Europe
Kristen R. Ghodsee - author of Red Hangover: Legacies of Twentieth-Century Communism
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