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 Featured Title
Fraught Intimacies
Non/Monogamy in the Public Sphere
Nathan Rambukkana  

$95.00 Hardcover
Release Date: 5/30/2015
ISBN: 9780774828963    

$32.95 Paperback
Release Date: 1/15/2016
ISBN: 9780774828970    

244 Pages

Sexuality Studies series


About the Book

Adultery scandals involving politicians. Dating websites for married women and men. Raids of polygamous communities. Reality shows about polyamorists. It seems that non-monogamy is everywhere: in popular culture, in the news, and before the courts.

In Fraught Intimacies, Nathan Rambukkana delves into North American society's fixation with monogamy and its attendant fascination with non-monogamy. Drawing on media coverage, popular culture, and recent court cases, he examines how polygamy, adultery, and polyamory are represented in the public sphere and the effect this is having on intimate relationships and aspects of contemporary Western society.

As this book demonstrates, although monogamy is considered and presented as the norm in Western society, many kinds of sexual and romantic relationships exist within its borders. Rambukkana's intricate analysis reveals how some forms of non-monogamy are tacitly accepted, even glamourized, while others are vilified and reviled. By questioning what this says about intimacy, power, and privilege, this book offers an innovative framework for understanding the place of non-monogamy in Western society, particularly in relation to race, class, gender, sexuality, nationality, and citizenship status.

Timely and controversial, this book makes a stimulating and sophisticated argument for why we need to reconsider how we talk – and think – about non-monogamy.

About the Author(s)

Nathan Rambukkana is an assistant professor in communication studies at Wilfrid Laurier University. His work centres on the study of discourse, politics, and identities, and his research addresses topics such as hashtag publics, mixed-race representation, digital intimacies, intimate privilege, and non/monogamy in the public sphere. He is also the editor of the collection Hashtag Publics: The Power and Politics of Discursive Networks (Peter Lang Press, forthcoming). He blogs at

Table of Contents

Preface: Chasing Non/Monogamy

Introduction: Non/Monogamy and Intimacy in the Public Sphere

1. The Space of (Intimate) Privilege

2. The Adultery Industry: Autonomous Space, Heteronormativity, and Neoliberal Cheating

3. Mapping Polygamy: Discourse, Reterritorialization, and Plural Marriage

4. The Fraught Promise of Polyamory: New Intimate Ethics or Heterotopian Enclave?

Conclusion: Non-Monogamies and the Space of Discourse

Appendix: Canada’s Criminal Code (C.26) Statutes on Bigamy and Polygamy





"This is the most important book on non-monogamy to come out in many years. Rambukkana is an excellent writer, and his analysis goes beyond previous research in this area to provide an exploration which is both sophisticated and extremely engaging. The book provides a thorough overview of current cultural understandings of non-monogamy, particularly attending to the ways in which gender, sexuality, race, and class intersect in popular representations. I highly recommend this book to anybody with an interest in relationships."
-- Meg Barker, editor of Understanding Non-Monogamies and author of Rewriting the Rules

"In this topical and thoroughly researched book, Nathan Rambukkana shows the significance of discourses around monogamy and non-monogamy for the regulation of intimate relationships in the public sphere. By contrasting perceptions of polygamy with depictions of adultery and polyamory, Rambukkana reveals how representations of different forms of non-monogamy are profoundly shaped by multiple forms of privilege, including gender, class, and race-based privileges."
-- Christian Klesse, author of The Spectre of Promiscuity: Gay Male and Bisexual Non-Monogamies and Polyamories

Sample Chapter

Sample Chapter [PDF]

Related Topics

Sexuality Studies
Communications Studies
Media Studies

Other Ways To Order

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