Dr Graham set out to bring the sublime into the sex life of every married couple. Widely considered the world’s first sex therapist, he guaranteed both ecstasy and fertility to the users of his infamous Celestial Bed, a contraption which harnessed all the most exciting developments of the Enlightenment. Electricity, magnetism, mind-altering gases and music all played a part in this astonishing invention, luxuriously designed to produce pleasure and perfect babies.
Graham’s medical career took him from his native Edinburgh to America and back again, and he crossed paths with many of the most famous individuals of his day. The doctor’s well-publicised efforts to overturn medical orthodoxy provoked both admiration and ridicule. He was crowned “the King of Quacks”.
Lydia Syson will give a portrait of this remarkable eighteenth-century celebrity, revealing a character of great complexity: startlingly progressive, extraordinarily arrogant and touchingly humane. He was the epitome of his era, yet utterly one of a kind.
Lydia Syson, author of MR PEACOCK’S POSSESSIONS, (aTimes and Sunday Times Book of the Year 2018, the YA historical/political novels LIBERTY’S FIRE, THAT BURNING SUMMER, A WORLD BETWEEN US, & the biography DOCTOR OF LOVE: DR JAMES GRAHAM AND HIS CELESTIAL BED,
These are difficult times, more difficult for some than others, so we are ticketing these talks by donation - if you can £8 per ticket would be wonderfully kind but if you can't then £2 is most welcome.