What is Intimacy? This is a term used with such frequency in modern social life that its meaning is taken for granted - sex, love, family, relationships, friends, children. However, what if we were to question our assumptions about intimacy? Intimate life, the relations of intimacy, and the meanings that define it have changed dramatically over time and in different historical eras. Meanings about intimacy also differ according to our gendered, raced and class histories, and are connected to broader structures of power - some forms of intimacy are valued and privileged, while others are pathologised and marginalised.
This topic throws the concept intimacy of up in the air. In the first module, we examine how meanings and relations around intimacy are differently constructed in different historical eras, and how relations of intimacy shape our ideas of 'self' and 'others' in different ways. In the second module, we move to look at intimacy and power, and explore this through the lens of gender, race, class and ability. Through the modules, we will look to sociological theories and debates, case studies and real life contemporary examples.