Vanilla Shakes? Exploring Sexual Coupledom and the Everyday

Date: Wednesday 9th March 2016, 6.00pm - 8.00pm

Location: No 70 Oxford St, Manchester, M1 5NH

Tickets: FREE – See Eventbrite for tickets

The liberalisation of both sexual regulation and attitudes since the 1960s - alongside the popular cultural ubiquity of sexual references and images - has given rise to the assumption  that western cultures are sexually liberated. Within this context, sociological debate around intimate relationships has focused on changes in sexual practices. A key assertion is that heterosexuality is losing its associations with wider gender inequalities and as such is no longer privileged as the norm. While there is some evidence suggesting that sexual identity categories may be loosening, in everyday life heterosexuality appears to maintain its status as the normative form of sexuality, and long-term couple relationships remain the dominant form. This event foregrounded the everyday life of the sexual couple to explore what constitutes ‘everyday, mundane, conventional sexual lives’ at the beginning of the twenty-first century.

Convened by Dr Jenny Van Hoof (MMU Department of Sociology) in conversation with Dr Jacqui Gabb (OU).

Dr Jenny van Hooff is Senior Lecturer in Sociology at Manchester Metropolitan University. Her work focuses on couples, sexual practices, love, commitment, monogamy/non-monogamy and emotional and domestic labour. She is currently researching the role of dating apps in the ways that individuals conduct their personal relationships through digitally mediated interactions.

Dr Jacqui Gabb is the author (with J. Fink) of Couple Relationships in the 21st Century. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan (2015) and Associate Dean in the Faculty of Social Sciences at The Open University

Dr Gabb discussed her study, Enduring Love?, which explores what it means and feels like to be a couple in contemporary Britain. Shifting the emphasis away from media hyperbole and unsubstantiated claims about what everyone is doing, and policy–professional practice emphasis on the ‘stressors’ which may contribute to relationship breakdown, Enduring Love? focusses on the things that help people sustain their ‘enduring’ relationships.

 

 This event was part of Wonder Women, Manchester’s annual feminist festival. From 3-13 March 2016, we celebrate the women’s movement born in our city through film, art, music, walking tours, gallery takeovers, comedy and debate, asking how far we’ve come in 100 years – and how far we have yet to go. Visit creativetourist.com/wonderwomen

 

Manchester Metropolitan University is committed to disability equality. If you have any access requirements, please let us know via 0161 247 6710 or email us at h.darby@mmu.ac.uk before you arrive to help us to make sure that your visit to the event is as enjoyable as possible