The Politics of Gender and Sexuality in the United States from Watts to Reagan


Frederick Burkhardt Residential Fellowships for Recently Tenured Scholars




For residence at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study during academic year 2007-2008


This project follows the politics of gender and sexuality in the United States from the Moynihan Report and Watts riot in 1965 to the emergence of the Moral Majority and the election of Ronald Reagan in the early 1980s. In those 15-20 years, the politics of welfare reform, the Vietnam War, feminism(s), gay rights, and the New Right produced a fundamental debate over the legal and social terms on which men and women defined their citizenship. The project asks how struggles over gender equity, sexual liberation, the family, and the boundaries between public and private remade the nation’s political culture and redefined liberalism before the so-called culture wars of the 1990s.