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Evil and Sexuality

Even as strides are made in freeing human sexuality from the shackles of religious morality, sexuality and evil continue to overlap in an array of fields, including the arts, psychology, and policy. The conflation of sexuality and evil has not only been the basis of historical legislation criminalizing sexual practice, but is alive and well in purity culture, abstinence-only sex education, and punitive legislation against even the most consensual adult sexual behaviour. From the UK’s Section 28 clause in the Local Government Act 1988, which prohibited the promotion of homosexuality by local authorities, to their 2014 law banning squirting and facesitting from British-made pornography, moral judgements about sexuality continue to inform laws. Some questions of sexuality are laden with so much moral stress that automatic assumptions about good and evil fall flat in response. The Satanic Temple has recently demanded the right to abortion as a religious freedom, in the face of the US State of Texas’s ban of abortions after 6 weeks, which has been widely interpreted as a vicious attack on female sexual freedom and bodily autonomy. The Satanic Temple cites their religious law, “One’s body is inviolable, subject to one’s own will alone.” While Satanism draws up images of evil in public imaginations, who is truly evil, Satan or the State?

People love what they are told not to have, and so in addition to the long history of conflating evil with sexuality in punitive and moralizing ways, there is also a long tradition of art, media, and psychological theorizing that claim evil is itself desirable. From the delightful debauchery of Chaucer, to Freud’s theories of taboo and horror, to the thousands of fans dedicated to Loki, the idea that an object of desire is bad, wrong, sinful, evil, can be a powerful aphrodisiac. The long history of associating evil with queerness or other non-normative sexualities have also led some, with tongue in cheek, to reclaim the label of “evil” or the trappings of villainy to describe expansive and creative sexualities. Sometimes, after all, it’s very good to be bad!


Activities

Conferences
Evil and Sexuality
Friday 6th May 2022 – Saturday 7th May 2022
Prague, Czech Republic

Call for papers, presentations and participation now active.


Publications

Women, Power, and Abuse: Interdisciplinary Essays on “Evil Women” ed. Helen Gavin is under contract with Emerald Publishing.

Publications from previous meetings of Evil Hub projects which we are pleased to curate on behalf of the Inter-Disciplinary Press.

Frightful Witnessing
Frightful Witnessing: The Rhetoric and (Re)Presentation of Fear Observing the anguish of others -- voyeuristically looking at their pain through the ‘keyhole’ of the media, eavesdropping on their stories of horror, or reading accounts of terror -- can be a frightful experience; but it is also ...Book Details
Author : Beth A. Kattelman
Publish : 01/06/2014
Publisher : Inter-Disciplinary Press
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Frightful Witnessing: The Rhetoric and (Re)Presentation of Fear
Forces of Evil
The Forces of Evil In this volume of essays, the authors delve into how evil forces within our culture subjugate us into shame and degradation. Within the following essays, we discover that in many ways evil and violence are incorporated into our cultural institutions as a means of conveying a grea...Book Details
Author : Anthony F. Crisafi
Publisher : Inter-Disciplinary Press
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The Forces of Evil
Female of the Species
The Female of the Species: Cultural Constructions of Evil, Women From Alien Queens to prostitutes, ‘phallic’ mothers to child-murderers, evil women proliferate across cultural productions that span millennia. This collection explores the perennial question of ‘evil’ and its relationship to...Book Details
Author : Hannah Priest
Publish : 01/05/2013
Publisher : Inter-Disciplinary Press
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The Female of the Species: Cultural Constructions of Evil, Women
Evil and the State: Interdisciplinary Perspectives It has been argued that situational and experiential factors provide a moral lens through which people judge the morality or otherwise of actions. The research presented within this volume takes this a step further and illustrates that individual d...Book Details
Author : Ben Livings
Publish : 01/01/2013
Publisher : Inter-Disciplinary Press
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Evil and the State: Interdisciplinary Perspectives
The Changing Places and Faces of War What are the consequences of interventions? Does Islam justify and promote war? Why did the IRA declare a war on drugs? How do civilians fare in the aftermath of war? These and many other questions are discussed in this new volume on war and conflict. An interdi...Book Details
Author : Peter Mario Kreuter
Publisher : Inter-Disciplinary Press
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The Changing Places and Faces of War
Beyond the Monstrous: Reading from the Cultural Imaginary Twenty-first century’s fascination with monsters in popular culture is not new. Throughout history, many of the world’s cultures have created beings they deem ‘other’ and ‘monstrous,’ beings which, many scholars agree, ultimately...Book Details
Author : Eva Gladhill
Publish : 1/06/2013
Publisher : Inter-Disciplinary Press
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Beyond the Monstrous: Reading from the Cultural Imaginary
Attack on All Fronts: The Culture of Twentieth-Century War The twentieth-century was arguably the most belligerent in history, marked as it was by a culture of war - that is, values, attitudes, and so on, which support the waging of war. At the same time, this culture shifted profoundly so that n...Book Details
Author : Nanette Norris
Publish : 1/05/2014
Publisher : Inter-Disciplinary Press
Attack on All Fronts: The Culture of Twentieth-Century War
Vile Women: Female Evil in Fact, Fiction and Mythology Is the evil that women do, and the evil with which they are accused, always one and the same? How might female evil, real, assumed, or appropriated confound gendered expectation and challenge patriarchal assumptions? What strategies have women ...Book Details
Author : Anthony Patterson
Publish : 31/1/2013
Publisher : Inter-Disciplinary Press
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Vile Women
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