Whilst just now reading this essay I had that pleasurable and heady experience of seeing clearly articulated a host of half-intuitions and suspicions, things I didn’t know I knew, things which had till now lay in my mind ‘unhatched’ .
B. J. Muirhead has written an important essay, and I recommend it to anyone interested in Art, ‘the nude’, child sexuality and ‘paedo-hysteria’. There is much that is illuminating, challenging and convincing here, and, as far as I’m concerned, BJMuirhead nails the issue of child nudity in Art. And when one nails ‘Art’, one also nails ‘Culture’ and, by extension, ‘Society’. No mean feat.
This is not an easy essay – I found it it required concentration, I am also sure that this is the kind of essay that can be fruitfully reread several times. BJMuirhead’s clarity comes from his articulating ideas which our culture has, because of the conceptual poverty it enforces round the subject of child sexuality, rendered virtually inarticulable: we are as well furnished with the tools for thinking about child sexuality as are the natives of a culturally isolated tropical island for constructing an igloo.
I just hope that BJ doesn’t (as he hints he might do in his introduction), stop writing about “art, children, “paedophilia” and adult-child sexual relations”.
I completely forgot that one has to join academia.edu to read articles and papers on that site. I have decided, therefore, to post the text of this short essay here as well, and will do so with any future articles I may write and publish. If, on the other hand, you want a pdf of the work, then you will have to go there and join in order to download it.
I have to say, however, that I am not sure just how much further work there will be. I am feeling as though I need a change of direction (again), and I have said nearly everything I want to say about art, children, “paedophilia” and adult-child sexual relations. I will, however, make a post about childhood sex arising out of comments made by one reader, though that will be a little way away as yet. In any event, for…
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