Sexual Revolution, By Beth Bailey

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Kirsten Kershbaumer 2321-001 Bailey, Beth. Sex in the Heartland. Cambridge, Massachusetts, and London, England: Harvard University Press, 1999. In the book Sex in the Heartland, the author Beth Bailey provides the reader with a distinct, detailed, and informative read of the impact in which the sexual revolution had on American culture during the 1960’s.This revolution took place in the town of Lawrence, Kansas, which Bailey refers to as the heartland of America. As Bailey states in her introduction, “Kansas is the quintessential heartland state” (4). The overall themes Bailey introduces are the dynamics of social change, as well as sexual change. Bailey argues throughout the course of the book that there was in fact, a sexual revolution. Reflecting of this change, Bailey writes, “What were long term events resulted in gradual trends” (2). These events are what make up the sex revolution discussed throughout Bailey’s book. The purpose of Sex in the Heartland is to assess the ongoing change in cultural normalcies, and the impact the sexual revolution had on university-towns such as Lawrence. Bailey encourages readers to gain a deeper understanding of what the revolution was in the eyes of the 1960’s American society. Throughout the book, Bailey argues that in cities around the country in the 1960’s, the “ordinary” person battled the constant struggle of both private and public sexual behaviors, which came to follow post WWII in America. Throughout the text, Bailey
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