Age and Male Sexuality: "Queer Space" in the Roman Bathhouse?

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
A. Asa Eger, Assistant Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:

Abstract: Scholars have conceived of the life-course stages of the boy and adult male by way of a typically dichotomous construction of active/passive male sexuality. This binary scheme, presented uncritically in much modern scholarship, dictates that boys assumed the passive role in male-to-male sex until roughly the age of 18-20 or the occasion of their first shave, while adults took the active role. This view implies that male sexual relations were pederastic and could be viewed as part of a rudimentary sexual development of a boy to a man, from passive to active, provided he was of free status. Conversely, men who behaved as boys (i.e., were pas-sive) were regarded as 'abnormal', and men who slept with free boys were regarded as criminal.

Additional Information

Journal of Roman Archaeology Supplementary Series 65, 131-152
Language: English
Date: 2007
Homosexuality, Roman bath-house

Email this document to