Sexology: The challenge of anonymity and striking the balance between subject privacy and scholarly practice

Sponsored by Adam Matthew
Recorded on 11/13/2019

Posted in Primary Sources and Special Collections


Issues of privacy and confidentiality are increasingly prevalent in contemporary culture and study. As in many disciplines, scholars of Sexology are increasingly required to construct their research around anonymized sources, mediating between protecting the privacy of subjects studied and giving voice to them.

In this webinar, Liana Zhou (Director at the Kinsey Institute Library & Special Collections), Shawn Wilson (Associate Director of Collections), and Paul R. Deslandes (University of Vermont) will introduce what it means to anonymize material in the Twenty First Century before reflecting on the many ways material lacking attribution can still reveal crucial perspectives and understandings of human experience, as recorded in Sex & Sexuality.


  • Image of Liana Zhou

    Liana Zhou

    Director Kinsey Institute Library & Special CollectionsIndiana University

    Liana H. Zhou is the Director of the Kinsey Institute Library and Special Collections, and Indiana University faculty librarian. Her acquisitions include those from prominent sex researchers’ collections – John Money, Harry Benjamin, Masters and Johnson, Leach Schafer, Richard Docters, and Jeanne Hoff, as well as many anonymous donors. She instigated the first endowment and a number of planned gifts, endowments, fellowship gifts, other acquisition and preservation funds for the Kinsey Institute Library, as well as initiating integration of the Kinsey Institute in-house database and bibliographic data into Indiana University Libraries cataloging system. While facilitating international access to collections holding information, her stewardship embraces storage, access, preservation, and digitization strategies, including collaboration with Indiana University’s Media Digitization and Preservation Initiative.

  • Image of Shawn Wilson

    Shawn Wilson

    Associate Director for Collections Kinsey Institute Library & Special CollectionsIndiana University

    Shawn C. Wilson is the Associate Director of the Kinsey Institute Library and Special Collections. With oversight of the use, reproduction, and maintenance of the collections, he has provided expert assistance to thousands of users including students, faculty, researchers, scholars and filmmakers from across the United States and worldwide, including matters of permissions and copyright. His deep knowledge of all of the Kinsey collections underpins his contributions to organizational innovations to optimize user accessibility and holdings development. The promotion of collections of print material, films, art and archival collections has been an important strand of his achievements, while also, he supervises many digitization, preservation and collection relocation projects.

  • Image of Paul R. Deslandes

    Paul R. Deslandes

    Chair, Associate Professor Department of HistoryUniversity of Vermont

    Paul Deslandes in an associate professor and chair of the Department of History at the University of Vermont, where he has been on the faculty since 2004. He is a specialist in British history, the history of the British Empire, and the history of gender and sexuality. Deslandes has written articles and reviews for the American Historical Review, Gender and History, Journal of British Studies, Journal of the History of Sexuality, Journal of Women’s History, Victorian Studies, History of Education Quarterly, History Compass, and Connecticut Medicine and is the author of Oxbridge Men: British Masculinity and the Undergraduate Experience, 1850-1920 (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2005/Paperback Version 2015). Most recently, he has published essays on pornography and the idea and history of “situational homosexuality” in the Global Encyclopedia of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ) History (edited by Howard Chiang) and a book chapter titled “Hair Health and Hygiene: Meanings, Images, and Politics,” in The Cultural History of Hair in the Modern Age (edited by Geraldine Biddle-Perry). His current book project, titled The Culture of Male Beauty in Britain: From the First Photographs to David Beckham, is forthcoming with the University of Chicago Press. Deslandes is an active member of the American Historical Association (currently serving on the 2020 Annual Meeting Program Committee) and the North American Conference on British Studies (NACBS). From 2013-2017 he served as Executive Secretary of the NACBS and, from 2013-2018, as Chief Reader for the College Board’s AP European History program. He has served Adam Matthew as a consultant editor for their Gender: Identity and Social Change and Sex and Sexuality collections.

  • Image of Rebecca Lynd

    Rebecca Lynd

    EditorAdam Matthew

    Since joining Adam Matthew Digital in 2015 Rebecca Lynd, a Production Editor, has worked on a diverse range of projects including Frontier Life: Borderlands, Settlement & Colonial Encounters; Migration to New Worlds; Gender: Identity and Social Change. Having recently led Colonial America to publication, Rebecca is now the editorial project lead for Sex & Sexuality: The Kinsey Institute Library & Special Collections. Rebecca’s own academic background lies in eighteenth century women’s life and travel writing.