The sex addict

Authored by: Barry Reay

The Routledge Companion to Media, Sex and Sexuality

Print publication date:  August  2017
Online publication date:  August  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138777217
eBook ISBN: 9781315168302
Adobe ISBN:


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The sex addict did not exist before the late twentieth century. Now the concept is a cultural commonplace. In 1972 the notion of out-of-control sexual behaviour was described as ‘a rare phenomenon’ (Salzman, 1972: 49), but by 2011 the cover story in that gauge of the US cultural mainstream, Newsweek, was ‘The Sex Addiction Epidemic’ (Lee, 2011). The disorder of sex addiction, and its sufferer the sex addict, are recent inventions. 1

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