George Paul Meiu

Nov 18, 2022

On Sigmund Freud's "Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality"

A Discussion with George Paul Meiu

New Books Network 2022

Sigmund Freud is probably best known as the founder of psychoanalysis. In his clinical practice, he established theories on how the human psyche develops and behaves, and his 1905 text Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality is an analysis of humans’ relationship to sex. At the time, doctors and researchers were curious how “non-normative” sexualities and genders developed. Instead of looking for biological or hereditary traits, Freud looked at the development of the human psyche, eventually questioning our relationship to notions of normativity and perversion. His questions laid a foundation for the later development of queer theory. George Paul Meiu is an associate professor of anthropology and African American studies at Harvard University. He is the author of Ethno-erotic Economies: Sexuality, Money, and Belonging in Kenya and the upcoming book Queer Objects: Intimacy, Citizenship, and Rescue in Kenya. See more information on our website,

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