Donna Drucker’s book, The Classification of Sex: Alfred Kinsey and the Organization of Knowledge is featured in Times Literary Supplement (TLS).
Featured on The Times Literary Supplement
Kinsey’s life has become more widely known since the publication of a biography by James Jones (1997), and, in 2004, the novel The Inner Circle by T. C. Boyle as well as a biopic starring Liam Neeson. Having completed his doctorate on gall wasps, Kinsey found himself in charge of a sexual education class for married students at Indiana University. A lack of sound information led Kinsey to question his students about their sexual experiences. The more they told him, the more he wanted to know, and his collection of sexual case histories escalated, until he had enough data to tabulate the information of thousands of men and women (mostly white, mostly cluster-sampled), who displayed a large variety of sexual practices. Kinsey and his co-workers published some of this data in Sexual Behavior in the Human Male (1948) and Sexual Behavior in the Human Female (1953), which included details about masturbation, premarital and homosexual experiences, as well as differences according to class and gender. The impact he had on encouraging Americans to speak more candidly about sex is incalculable. Against this standard story of sexual liberation, the religious Right portray Kinsey as a sexual deviant whose science cannot be trusted. In The Classification of Sex, Donna Drucker successfully traverses this dangerous academic landscape. [ Read the full article ]