midterm review - final copy

1794 1851 whose health crusade demanded certain rules

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(1794-1851), whose health crusade demanded certain rules regarding the frequency of intercourse for married couples he believed that an ounce of semen was equal to nearly 40 ounces of blood sexual excesses lowered the life force of the male by exposing his system to disease and premature death hoped that healthy and robust husbands would limit their sexual indulgences to 12 times a year - William Acton’s Functions and Disorders of the Reproductive Organs
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Week 4 medical justification for the changing role of women in marriage observed that women had little sexual feeling, and in fact, remained indifferent to the physical aspects of marriage the role of woman in the personal sexual relationship could only be a supportive position, conserving male strength only one in four women knew she had a clitoris sexual coldness became a condition to be desired late 19 th century moralists likened the sexual role of women to that of a flower- motionless, insentient, passive, and inanimate - nearly all purity literature condemned the romantic novel as responsible for the increase in sexual neurasthenia, hysteria, and generally poor health among American women overindulgence in romantic stories produced a flow of blood to certain body organs causing “excessive excitement” and finally disease most complications during pregnancy and menopause were traced to this source - like novels and letter-writing, dancing was another source of impurity - manual writers cautioned girls never to handle their sexual organs, for, while it gave temporary pleasure, the habit left “its mark upon the face so that those who are wise may know what the girls is doing” - the manuals passed hurriedly over another nasty habit- the display of unnatural affections of girls for other girls perhaps women sought to compensate for the masculine attentions that Victorian strictures forbade, and turned to feminine intimacy to supply this lack; perhaps they sought to fulfill a deeper desire - manuals cautioned the woman to passively await the male’s declaration of matrimonial intentions before expressing the slighted evidence of reciprocating love - society held the woman more accountable to breaches of sexual morality than the male - young girls were also to avoid the hazards of early marriage; premature love robbed the nerve and brain of their natural needs and blighted the organs of sex - the English had the most reasonable understanding of marriage relations; it was the custom in English homes, according to the manuals, for the husband and wife to have separate bedrooms undressing in one another’s presence caused excessive emotion that harmed lasting marital relationships - physicians of this time were divided on the question of birth control; the majority of those who published books remained publicly opposed to the use of contraceptives ( Malthusians ) particularly critical of withdrawal - doctors condemned the condom as deterring sexual enjoyment, and most doubted its
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