Catherine Hakim, The New Rules: Internet Dating, Playfairs and Erotic Power

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I went along to see Hakim speak at the University of London Union, hosted by the political organisation New Turn. The debate, ‘You Need to be Attractive to be Successful’, focused mainly on the concept of erotic capital, but she described the “kneejerk moral reaction of puritanical Anglo-Saxon” nations, who strap sex and sexuality into easily-swallowed pigeon-holes from which it can be difficult and painful to escape. She’s a formidable woman; compelling and direct without being overly demonstrative, and from speaking with her later on it was clear that a good deal of rubbish has been written about her work. She’s not anti-marriage, nor does she believe the institution necessarily transforms people into ‘caged animals’: what she does believe is that we need to take a long, hard look at why fidelity and monogamy have become so enshrined, and from this alter our attitudes accordingly

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