An affectionate history of postwar romance offers a corrective to modern notions about loveI am often struck by how few of the people I know who were young in the swinging 60s actually had much fun. There were drugs and rock’n’roll in Soho; there were a few open marriages in Hampstead. But in street after street of terraced houses lived couples who had married as virgins and were now struggling to bring up three children with only the occasional camping holiday to look forward to. They may have sung along to the Beatles while washing the floor, but the sexual revolution was definitely passing them by. An urbane and apparently bohemian friend told me recently that it wasn’t until 1970 (after several years of sexual encounters) that he was alerted to the fact that women were capable of orgasms. It must have been rather frustrating to learn with hindsight that this was the decade of free love.The social historian Claire Langhamer has a convincing explanation for this disjunction. According to her, what occurred in the 1960s (and began in the 1940s) was not a sexual revolution but an emotional revolution. This was about love, not sex. During and after the …read more

Via: The Guardian | Books