Sex on Show : Seeing the Erotic in Greece and Rome - the exhibition catalogue from British Museum available to buy at Museum Bookstore

Sex on Show : Seeing the Erotic in Greece and Rome

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'Current, written in a lively and open style, wonderfully illustrated, and inspiring' -The Anglo-Hellenic Review

Sex on Show: Seeing the Erotic in Greece and Roman

The Greeks and Romans were not shy about sex. Drinking cups, oil-lamps and walls were decorated with scenes of seduction and sexual intercourse which make the modern viewer blush; models of penises were worn around the neck or hung from doorways.

Drawing on the British Museum's extensive collection of classical works, Sex on Show: Seeing the Erotic in Greece and Rome explores why the Greeks and Romans surrounded themselves with so many sexually explicit images. It examines how these images were used and what they reveal about how the ancients saw themselves and their world. Covering the sixth century BC to the fourth century AD, as well as some Neoclassical art from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, Sex on Show uses detailed visual analysis to bring new insights to Greek and Roman culture and to the meaning of erotic imagery, past and present.

The book is wittily written but never salacious covering themes including different aspects of imagery and how it may have been interpreted by contemporary peoples and how the Greek/Roman mythologies and religions intertwined and shared a common understanding of sexual themes and how the re-discovery. 

  • Author: Caroline Vout, Senior Lecturer in Classics at Cambridge University
  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Date published: October 2013
  • Language: English
  • ISBN: 978-0714122786