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The Secular CitySecularization and Urbanization in Theological Perspective$
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Harvey Cox

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780691158853

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691158853.001.0001

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Sex and Secularization

Sex and Secularization

(p.227) Chapter 9 Sex and Secularization
The Secular City

Harvey Cox

Princeton University Press

This chapter shows how the humanization of sex is impeded. First, it is thwarted by the parading of cultural-identity images for the sexually dispossessed, to make money. These images become the tyrant gods of the secular society, undercutting its liberation from religion and transforming it into a kind of neotribal culture. Second, the authentic secularization of sex is checkmated by an anxious clinging to the sexual standards of the town, an era so recent and yet so different from today that simply to transplant its sexual ethos into today's situation is to invite hypocrisy of the worst degree. The chapter then looks at the spurious sexual models conjured up for the anxious society by the sorcerers of the mass media and the advertising guild. Like all pagan deities, these come in pairs—the god and his consort. For this chapter's purposes they are best symbolized by The Playboy and Miss America.

Keywords:   sex, secular society, neotribal culture, secularization, sexual standards, sexual ethos, sexual models, mass media, The Playboy, Miss America

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