In an extended account of national identity, this companion volume to People, Places and Passions provides the first detailed study of the sexual and spiritual life of Wales in the period 1870-1945. The author argues that whilst Wales and its people experienced a disenchantment of the spiritual world, a revolution in sexual life was taking place. This innovative study examines how advances in life expectancy and improvements in health were reflected in emotional life. In contrast to the traditional emphasis upon hardship and hardscrabble experiences, this fascinating and beautifully written volume shows that the Welsh were also a free and fun-loving people.
Russell Davies is a broadcaster and writer living in Wales.
`To begin at the beginning': an introduction 1: `Dygwyl y Meirwon' (Festival of the Dead): death, transcendence and transience 2: The Citadel: pain, anxiety and wellbeing 3: Going Gently into that Good Night: desolation, dispiritedness and melancholy 4: Where, When, What Was Wales and who were the Welsh? contentment, disappointment and embarrassment 5: `The Way of all Flesh': prudery, passion and perversion 6: Love in a Cold Climate: fidelity, friendship and fellowship 7: Religion and superstition: fear, foreboding and faith 8: The pursuit of pleasure: enthrallment, happiness and imagination Conclusion: A few selected exits.