Department of History
   
   
  

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Harry Cocks

Associate Professor, Faculty of Arts

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Teaching Summary

Britain on Film (Year 3 option), The Victorians: Life, Thought and Culture (Year 2 option), Sexuality and Society in Britain Since 1900 (Year 3 special subject, Research Skills for Historians (MA)

Research Summary

My main interest is in the social and cultural history of Britain since the eighteenth century, especially the history of sexuality, gender and the body. Broadly, my interest is in the rise of… read more

Recent Publications

  • 2017. Visions of Sodom: Religion, Homoerotic Desire, and the End of the World in England, c. 1550-1850 University of Chicago Press. (In Press.)
  • H. COCKS, 2016. "Conspiracy to Corrupt Public Morals and the 'Unlawful' Status of Homosexuality in Britain after 1967" Social History. (In Press.)
  • 2015. "The Pre-History of Online Dating". In: I. ALEV DEGIM and JAMES HENRY JOHNSON, eds., Online Courtship: Interpersonal Interactions Across Borders Institute of Network Cultures.

Current Research

My main interest is in the social and cultural history of Britain since the eighteenth century, especially the history of sexuality, gender and the body. Broadly, my interest is in the rise of "bio-power," that is, the attempt on the part of states and their agencies to govern the range of bodily processes associated with life, death, reproduction and sexuality. Also, I explore the ways in which sexuality emerged as a distinct domain of knowledge and a means of organising personal identity in the modern period. My first book, Nameless Offences (2003) studied the cultural politics of male homosexuality in nineteenth century Britain, examining the paradoxical association of homosexuality and secrecy. I have also written on the relationship of sexuality and the criminal law, religion, the history of reading, and on pornography and obscenity laws.

Publications

Books

Visions of Sodom: Religion, Homoerotic Desire, and the End of the World in England, c. 1550-1850 (forthcoming, University of Chicago Press, 2017)

Classified: The Secret History of the Personal Column (Random House, 2009)

The Modern History of Sexuality (edited with Matt Houlbrook, Palgrave, 2005)

Nameless Offences: Homosexual Desire in 19th Century England (Tauris, 2003, revised ed. 2009)

Sculpture of Greater Manchester (with Terry Wyke, Liverpool University Press, 2003)

Articles

"Conspiracy to Corrupt Public Morals and the 'Unlawful' Status of Homosexuality in Britain after 1967", Social History (forthcoming)

"'The Social Picture of Our Own Times': Reading Obscene Magazines in 1940s Britain," Twentieth Century British History (18 March 2016) http://tcbh.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2016/03/17/tcbh.hww008.short?rss=1

"Horrid Crimes, Unnatural Offences", East Midlands History and Heritage 2 (December 2015) http://eastmidlandshistory.org.uk/magazine-issue-2/

"The Pre-History of Online Dating". In: I. ALEV DEGIM and JAMES HENRY JOHNSON, eds., Online Courtship: Interpersonal Interactions Across Borders Institute of Network Cultures (2015)

"Sexuality". In: ROBERT A. SEGAL, and R. Von Stuckrad, (eds.), Vocabulary for the Study of Religion Brill (2015).

"Wilde and the Law". In: KERRY POWELL and PETER RABY, eds., Wilde in Context Cambridge University Press. (Oxford: OUP, 2013.)

"The Cost of Marriage and the Matrimonial Agency in Late-Victorian Britain" Social History. 38, 1 (February, 2013), 66-88

"Margins of Print:: Ephemera and Lost Histories of the Newspaper" Media History 18, 1 (February 2012): Special Issue, edited with Matt Rubery

"Reading Obscene Texts and their Histories" Media History. 18, 3, (2012)

"Her World Was So Queer": Sarah Waters' Fingersmith: Roundtable on the Historical Novel, Institute of Historical Research, Reviews in History. Available at: <http://www.history.ac.uk/reviews/review/1171>

'Oh, It Was Different Then': Marriage, Sexuality and the Body Before the SixtiesTwentieth Century British History. 22(1), (2011): 114-119

"Approaches to the History of Sexuality Since 1750," In: TOULALAN, S. and FISHER, K., eds.,The Routledge History of Sex and the Body, 1500 to the Present Routledge (2012). 38-54

"The Discovery of Sodom, 1851", Representations 112 (Fall 2010)

"Evolutionary Psychology Meets the History of Sexuality", Contemporary British History 24, 1 (Spring 2010)

"Sodom and Gomorrah, 14th January 1851," "Beyond Britain", special issue of Victorian Review: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Victorian Studies (2010).

"A Complicated State of Mind: Socialism, Aestheticism, Sexuality" History Workshop Journal 68, 1 (2009), 293-302

"Homosexuality Between Men in Britain Since the 18th Century," History Compass, 5(March 2007),

"Modernity and the Twentieth Century," In: JULIE-MARIE STRANGE AND FRANCESCA CARNEVALLI, eds., 20th Century Britain (Pearson, 2007).

"Safeguarding Civility: Sodomy, Class and the Limits of Moral Reform in early 19th Century England," Past and Present: A Journal of Historical Studies 190 (February 2006), 121-146

"Making the Sodomite Speak: Voices of the Accused in English Sodomy Trials, c1800-1898," Gender & History 18, 1(2006) 87-107.

"Modernity and the Self in the Modern History of Sexuality," Historical Journal 49, 4 (2006),1211-1227

"The Nineteenth Century: Sins, Crimes and Diseases," In: M. COOK, ed., A Gay History of Britain (Greenwood, 2006).

Four entries (London; W.H. Auden; Martina Navratilova; Billie Jean King). In: , ed.,International Encyclopaedia of Queer Culture (Routledge, 2006)

"Homosexuality in Europe, 1914-2004 and AIDS in Europe 1914-2004," In: JAY WINTER AND JOHN MERRIMAN, ed., Encyclopaedia of Europe: 1914 - 2004 (Gale, 2006)

"Saucy Stories: Pornography, Sexology and the Marketing of Sexual Knowledge in Britain, c.1918-1970,"Social History 29(4 (2004), 465-484

"Peril in the Personals: The Pleasures and Dangers of Classified Advertising in Early Twentieth Century Britain," Media History 10, 1 (2004), 3-17

"Trials of Character: The Use of Character Evidence in Victorian Sodomy Trials," In: ROSE MELIKAN, ed., Domestic and International Trials, 1700-2000: The Trial in History vol 2 (Manchester University Press, 2003), 36-53.

"Sporty Girls and Artistic Boys: Friendship, Illicit Sex and the British Companionship Advertisement 1913-1928," Journal of the History of Sexuality. 11, 3 (2002), 457-482

"Calamus in Bolton: Spirituality and Homosexual Desire in Late-Victorian England" Gender and History. 13, 2, (2001), 191-223.

Reviews

Review of Marilyn Morris, Sex, Money and Personal Character in Eighteenth-Century British Politics, Journal of the History of Sexuality 25, 2 (May 2016), 372-4.

Review of Kate Fisher and Rebecca Langlands, (eds.), Sex, Knowledge, and Receptions of the Past, Classical Review (2016), http://journals.cambridge.org/action/displayJournal?jid=CAR

Review of Dominic Janes, Picturing the Closet, Cultural and Social History (2016) http://www.tandfonline.com/toc/rfcs20/current

Review of Matt Cook, Queer Domesticities, London Journal 40, 1 (2015), http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1179/0305803414Z.00000000060

Review of Lisa Sigel, Making Modern Love Journal of Social History (2013).

Review of Naoko Wake, Private Practices: Harry Stack Sullivan, the Science of Homosexuality, and American Liberalism History of Psychiatry. 24, 3 (2013), 369-70

Review of Deborah Cohen, Family Secrets: Shame and Privacy in Modern Britain Journal of Social History (2013)

Review of Stephen Brooke, Sexual Politics: Sexuality, Family Planning, and the British Left from the 1880s to the Present Day History: The Journal of the Historical Association (2012)

Review of Kate Fisher and Sarah Toulalan, (eds.), Bodies, Sex and Desire from the Renaissance to the Present History: Journal of the Historical Association (2012)

Review of Frank Mort, Capital Affairs: London and the Making of the Permissive Society, British Scholar (2011)

Review of Julie Peakman, (ed.), Sexual Perversions, 1670-1890 Archives (2011)

Review of Richard Hornsey, The Spiv and the Architect: Unruly Life in Post War LondonLondon Journal (2011)

Review of Julie Peakman, Sexual Perversions, 1670-1890, Archives (October 2010), 81-83.

Review of Adrian Bingham, Family Newspapers Media History (2010)

"Thoroughly Modern Edward", Review of Sheila Rowbotham, Edward CarpenterAt: H-Albion (2008); Url: http://www.h-net.org/reviews/showrev.php?id=22991

"Getting Off at Mill Hill", Review of Kate Fisher, Birth Control, Sex and Marriage in Britain 1918-1960 At: H-Albion (2008); Url: http://www.h-net.org/reviews/showrev.php?id=14185

Review of Seth Koven, Slumming: Sexual and Social Politics in Victorian London, Journal of Modern History (December 2006), 947-9 http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/abs/10.1086/511215

"No Sex Please We're British", Review of Hera Cook, The Long Sexual RevolutionAt: H-Albion (2005); http://www.h-net.org/reviews/showrev.php?id=11040

Review of Alan Bray, The Friend, Albion 36, 3 (Fall 2004), 566-567 http://journals.cambridge.org/action/displayAbstract?fromPage=online&aid=9018022&fileId=S0095139000008024

"Growing Pains in the History of Sexuality," Journal of Contemporary History, 39, 4 (2004),657-666

Review of Ben Shephard, Kitty and the Prince, Daily Mail

Review of Lisa Sigel, Governing Pleasures At: Reviews in History (2003); Url: http://www.history.ac.uk/reviews/review/314

Media

Serialisation of Classified, The Times, February 2010.

"Sporty Girls and Bachelor Boys" BBC Who Do You Think You Are Magazine 19 March 2009,70-74

"Be My Chum," Gay Times, (2004)

Department of History

University of Nottingham
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Nottingham, NG7 2RD

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