Free course

Sexuality, parenthood and population

Free statement of participation on completion

Sexuality and parenthood encompass some of the most ordinary and yet most profound experiences that life has to offer. In this free course, Sexuality, parenthood and population, we look at how attitudes to parenthood and sexuality, and the links between the two, have changed, with specific reference to the fertility decline that began in the mid-nineteenth century.

Course learning outcomes

After studying this course, you should be able to:

  • use a feminist historical approach to critically examine theories about how and why fertility decline in Britain occurred and to explore the importance of gender and power in reshaping parenthood and sexuality in social policy and personal lives
  • use histories of marriage, sexuality, parenthood, birth control and population policy to illuminate the connections between procreative sexuality, personal lives and social policy, in particular those relating to fertility decline in Britain between the 1860s and the 1920s
  • focus on parenthood and sexuality within marriage as the unmarked category, the norm against which other sexualities and parenthoods are defined
  • demonstrate the use of a historical approach to explore the specificities of a particular time and place in the past in order to illuminate processes of social change.