Jane Vandenburgh's A Pocket History of Sex in the Twentieth Century: A Memoir PDF

By Jane Vandenburgh

Jane Vandenburgh's lifestyles all started as a rule adequate. Born into "a sure form of family"—affluent, white, Protestant—she got here of age in the course of a time whilst the sexual revolution used to be sweeping our cultural panorama. Her father, an architect with a renowned l. a. enterprise, was once arrested a number of occasions for being in homosexual bars through the Nineteen Fifties. He was once despatched to a medical institution to be "cured" of his homosexuality; he devoted suicide whilst she used to be 9. Her mom was once a Bohemian who believed that she was once glamorous and proficient and will write her personal principles for a way she lived her existence. confident that she was once being persecuted for being "unconventional," she misplaced her brain and was once despatched to a psychological clinic. Vandenburgh and her brothers have been raised via relations in an prosperous suburb within the San Fernando Valley, a spot the place medicines, intercourse, and generalized performing out have been the waves of social switch that have been simply hitting the seashores the place they spent each weekend. Quirky and wonderful, A Pocket historical past of intercourse within the 20th Century is an engaging combination of memoir and cultural revelation.

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Extra resources for A Pocket History of Sex in the Twentieth Century: A Memoir

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My father worked standing at his drafting table, which faced that of Peter. They both worked in their shirtsleeves. On that day, my father rolled down his sleeves and buttoned the cuffs, then put on his coat, saying he was going on a coffee break. Some coffee break, my mother liked to say. W 34 Thirty-Six Miles The day our father dies, we have to gather up our animals to take them in the car to go to our grandparents’ house. When we get there, things will be better because Dr. Greenly is coming to give our mother a sedative, but first she has to drive us there, so she can’t crack up quite yet.

We are sitting on the huge mahogany bed our dad got from his grandmother. This kind of furniture came Round the Horn, our mother says. Your faw-thur’s family, she says, came to California by ship and train, while the little girls in her family, like Perseus Bartholomew and America Orchard, got behind the ox cart and walked. This is to make some point I have never understood, about the difference in class between their two very similar families. I hate thinking about these things. 31 A pocket history of sex The Oregon Trail, the people who did or didn’t come west by walking two thousand miles, bores me in a particularly headachy way.

38 4 The Salisbury Court Reporter After my father steps forward, falls six stories, and disappears, my mother finishes going crazy. She buys a new house with a bomb shelter, a gold Naugahyde sofa bed, a black-and-white kidney-shaped coffee table, Johnny Mercer albums. She calls everyone she knows long-distance and talks for hours. We move to a new house that has a pomegranate tree, on a street called Salisbury Court. We have two birds: a parakeet named Perky and a finch named Pickering, after the colonel on the My Fair Lady album, where the record sticks, going, Pickering, Pickering, Pickering.

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