Anthony Giddens's Transformation Of Intimacy

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This dislocation has important implications, given that sexuality is still immensely significant as a ‘prime connecting point between body, self-identity and social norms’ (Giddens, 1992:15), and that it remains central to our understanding of contemporary forms of relationship. Anthony Giddens’ work on the ‘transformation of intimacy’ has drawn attention to two important developments in the place of sexuality in organizing those relationships. The first is of particular concern for the future of heterosexual intimacy, and arises from the tension between the types of relationship currently pursued by men and women. On the one hand, there is a shift towards an ‘episodic’ sexuality, chiefly, though not exclusively, associated with a masculine avoidance of intimacy.…show more content…
On the other, there is a new pursuit of intimate relationships that combine love with sexual pleasure, generally associated with women. In this situation, the quest for sex becomes particularly prone to conflicts between men and women. The second of these developments is the evolution of the ‘pure relationship’ as ‘the prototypical form of personal life’ (Giddens, 1992:154). This contemporary ideal of intimate relationship is based on a form of democratic mutual self-interest. According to this model, a relationship is ‘entered into for its own sake, for what can be derived by each person from a sustained association with another; and…continued only in so far as it is thought by both parties to deliver enough satisfactions for each individual to stay within it’ (Giddens,
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