Sex and Politics: Bertrand Russell and ‘Human Sexuality’ (Hauerwas, 1978)

“Rather, it is a mistake to follow the way the report invites us to think about human sexuality because it, like a great deal of Protestant and secular thought, assumes that the basis for any ethics of sex involves an interpretation of “wholesome interpersonal relations.” The dominant assumption has been that the evaluation of different kinds of sexual expressions should center on whether they are or are not expressive of love. On the contrary, the ethics of sex must begin with political considerations, because ethically the issue of the proper form of sexual activity raises the most profound issues about the nature and form of political community. I am not denying that sex obviously has to do with interpersonal matters, but I am asserting that we do not even know what we need to say about the personal level until we have some sense of the political context necessary for the ordering of sexual activity”.

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