Thursday 26th October 2017
From 19:30 until 20:30
Venue: Dorset County Museum, High West Street, Dorchester, Dorset, DT1 1XA
Literary Lives: Hardy and Sex Education
By Dr Karin Koehler
Come and join us for an interesting talk by Dr Karin Koehler when she will explore Thomas Hardy’s engagement with and contribution to Victorian and Edwardian debates about sex education.
In 1894, Thomas contributed to a New Review symposium on the question of whether young, unmarried women should receive physiological instruction. He suggested the circulation of ‘a plain handbook on natural processes, specially prepared’. He added that such information would be as useful for ‘innocent youths’ as for maidens, likely with the plot of Jude the Obscure in mind. This talk will explore Thomas Hardy’s engagement with and contribution to Victorian and Edwardian debates about sex education. It will consider how Hardy addresses issues of sexual knowledge and ignorance in his novels, essays, and correspondence. It also hopes to shed light on Hardy’s relationship with another notable Dorset resident: Dr Marie Stopes, sex reformer, birth control campaigner, author, and founder of Portland Museum.
Karin Koehler is a Lecturer in Nineteenth-Century English Literature at Bangor University. Her first book, Thomas Hardy and Victorian Communication: Letters, Telegrams, and Postal Systems, came out with Palgrave in 2016.
This event is FREE although a donation of £3 is encouraged to cover costs.
For further information contact the Museum on 01305 262735 or Contact Us