19: Interdisciplinary Studies in the Long Nineteenth Century, No 3 (2006)

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The Journals that Did: Writing about Sex in the late 1890s

Anne Humpherys


This essay describes a ‘virtual community' of radical writers about ‘the sexual problem' in the half decade between the Oscar Wilde and George Bedborough trials (1895-1899), focusing on three journals: the Westminster, The Adult, and the University Magazine and Free Review . The article identifies a number of writers and editors who wrote for all three journals and also surveys the various discussions about monogamy, evolution, prostitution, marriage, free love, men and women's sex drives, and Oscar Wilde. It concludes with a discussion of the history of the University Magazine and Free Review and its scandalous owner and editor, who had an important role in first publishing Havelock Ellis and in keeping other radical social and psychological texts in print.

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