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Foster, Thomas A.

Foster, Thomas A.

PERSONAL: Education: Cornell University, B.A.; North Carolina State University, M.A.; Johns Hopkins University, Ph.D.

ADDRESSES: Home— Chicago, IL. Office— Department of History, DePaul University, 1 E. Jackson Blvd., Chicago, IL 60604. E-mail— [email protected]

CAREER: DePaul University, Chicago, IL, assistant professor of history.


Sex and the Eighteenth-Century Man: Massachusetts and the History of Sexuality in America, Beacon Press (Boston, MA), 2006.

(Editor) Long before Stonewall: Histories of Same-Sex Sexuality in Early America, New York University Press (New York, NY), 2007.

Contributor of scholarly articles to various journals, including the William and Mary Quarterly.

SIDELIGHTS: Thomas A. Foster serves as an assistant professor of history at DePaul University in Chicago, Illinois, where his primary areas of research interest include early America, U.S. women’s and gender history, the American Revolution, the history of sexuality, and U.S. social and cultural history. In his Sex and the Eighteenth-Century Man: Massachusetts and the History of Sexuality in America, Foster presents an alternative to the traditional views of American sexual behavior in the eighteenth century, claiming it was not the chaste, puritanical society most commonly reported. Instead, Foster argues that the nation’s founding fathers considered sex to be a part of daily life, and treated the subject in a frank and open manner, and that sexuality, along with religion and economics, was a vital part of how men defined themselves during the period. Maurice Gold, writing for the Gay & Lesbian Review Worldwide, noted that the book originated as a doctoral thesis, but added: “Foster’s prose is more readable than many similar books, and for the most part he avoids turgid postmodernese.” Matthew Price, in a review for the New York Times, called Foster’s effort a “plodding if occasionally saucy book.” A contributor for Publishers Weekly remarked that Foster “uncovers intriguing and historically important examples that provoke rethinking of the history of gender in America.”



Gay & Lesbian Review Worldwide, November-December, 2006, Maurice Gold, review of Sex and the Eighteenth-Century Man: Massachusetts and the History of Sexuality in America, p. 44.

New York Times, January 7, 2007, Matthew Price, review of Sex and the Eighteenth-Century Man.

Publishers Weekly, July 24, 2006, review of Sex and the Eighteenth-Century Man, p. 51.


Booksense, (January 14, 2007), author biography.

DePaul University Web site, (January 14, 2007), faculty biography.*

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