24 episodes

Why did kings and queens have spectators on their wedding night? Who had the very first boob job? And did our ancestors have their unmentionables pierced?
Join historian, Kate Lister, Betwixt the Sheets as she unashamedly roots around the topics which seem to have been skipped in history class.
Everything from landmark LGBTQ+ court cases, to political scandal, to downright bizarre medieval cures for impotence. The etymology of swear words, gender bias in medicine, and satanic panic and cults - there’s nothing off limits.
She'll be bed-hopping around different time periods; from ancient civilisations, to the middle ages, to renaissance and early modern...right up to now.
You’ll laugh, you’ll wince, and you’ll ask yourself how much has actually changed.
So join Kate Betwixt the Sheets: The History of Sex, Scandal & Society - a podcast from History Hit.

See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

Betwixt The Sheets: The History of Sex, Scandal & Society History Hit

    • History
    • 4.9 • 101 Ratings

Why did kings and queens have spectators on their wedding night? Who had the very first boob job? And did our ancestors have their unmentionables pierced?
Join historian, Kate Lister, Betwixt the Sheets as she unashamedly roots around the topics which seem to have been skipped in history class.
Everything from landmark LGBTQ+ court cases, to political scandal, to downright bizarre medieval cures for impotence. The etymology of swear words, gender bias in medicine, and satanic panic and cults - there’s nothing off limits.
She'll be bed-hopping around different time periods; from ancient civilisations, to the middle ages, to renaissance and early modern...right up to now.
You’ll laugh, you’ll wince, and you’ll ask yourself how much has actually changed.
So join Kate Betwixt the Sheets: The History of Sex, Scandal & Society - a podcast from History Hit.

See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

    The First Queer Activist

    The First Queer Activist

    On 29 August 1867, Karl Heinrich Ulrichs stood in front of the Congress of German Jurists in Munich and urged them not to extend sodomy laws across the soon to be unified Germany.
    He was booed off stage, but this stands as the earliest public queer protest in history. Similarly, his definition of his own identity and sexuality serves as one of the first times this was put into words. 
    So how did Ulrichs define his own sexuality? What is an ‘urning’? And what did Ulrichs believe was behind his attraction to men?
    In this episode, Kate is introduced to Ulrichs and his early queer identity by Douglas Pretsell.
    *WARNING There are adult themes in this episode*
    Produced by Charlotte Long and Sophie Gee. Mixed by Stuart Beckwith.
    Betwixt the Sheets: The History of Sex, Scandal & Society. A podcast by History Hit.

    See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

    • 34 min
    Beer

    Beer

    Pint, bottle, schooner, tinny … no matter how you drink it, beer is undeniably a part of social life here in Britain and around the world.
    But how did it come to hold this position? Why has this been more true for British men than for British women? And what did beer taste like before mass production and microbiology?
    Kate has a pint with author, broadcaster and beer lover Pete Brown to find out.
    *WARNING this episode includes some fruity language*
    Produced by Charlotte Long and Sophie Gee. Mixed by Thomas Ntinas.
    Betwixt the Sheets: The History of Sex, Scandal & Society. A podcast by History Hit.
    This podcast includes music from Epidemic Sound and archive clips from "Brooklyn Bar Owner Wins Irish Sweepstake", 1937.

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    • 45 min
    The Museum of Sex Objects

    The Museum of Sex Objects

    We’re used to exhibits in museums detailing our ancestors’ home lives and work lives, but what about their sex lives?
    On a sunny day in London, Kate met Deborah Sim, the Keeper of the Museum of Sex Objects, who brought along a collection of objects that represent just that.
    From a china figurine to a mysterious mudlarking discovery, what can these objects tell us about the history of sex and sexuality?
    *WARNING: There are adult themes in this episode*
     
    Produced by Charlotte Long and Sophie Gee. Mixed by Pete Dennis.
    To find out more about the museum, you can find it here.
     
    Betwixt the Sheets: The History of Sex, Scandal & Society. A podcast by History Hit.
     
    This episode includes music by Epidemic Sound.

    See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

    • 30 min
    Fanny and Stella: The Men Who Shocked Victorian Society

    Fanny and Stella: The Men Who Shocked Victorian Society

    In 1870, two young women were arrested after leaving a theatre in London. These women, so-called Fanny and Stella, were in fact Ernest Boulton and Frederick Park, and they were charged with ‘buggery’.
    So who were Boulton and Park? What was the evidence against them? And why did this create such a stir across the front pages and the world?
    Neil McKenna joins Kate Betwixt the Sheets to share Stella and Fanny’s extraordinary life stories and trial.
    *WARNING: There are adult themes, explicit descriptions of sex and suicide references in this episode*
    Produced by Charlotte Long and Sophie Gee. Mixed by Thomas Ntinas.
    Betwixt the Sheets: The History of Sex, Scandal & Society. A podcast by History Hit.
    This episode includes music by Epidemic Sound.

    See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

    • 41 min
    Poppers

    Poppers

    *WARNING There are adult themes and explicit descriptions of drug use in this episode. All drugs come with their own risks and legal implications. For more information please see the links below*
    Angina treatments, room aromas and leather cleaners: amyl nitrite has had a wide range of reported uses over the years.But in reality the substance, better known as poppers, is usually used as something entirely different: a recreational drug.
    But when did people start using them, why are they called poppers and how did they come to be so intrinsic to gay culture?
    Kate is joined by Adam Zmith, author of ‘Deep Sniff: A History of Poppers and Queers Futures’ to discuss the history of poppers, from its discovery and use as medicine in the Victorian age, through its height of popularity in the clubs of the 1970s and the moral panic surrounding it in the 1980s, to today.
    Produced by Charlotte Long and Sophie Gee. Mixed by Thomas Ntinas.
    Betwixt the Sheets: The History of Sex, Scandal & Society. A podcast by History Hit.
    This episode includes music by Epidemic Sound.
    https://www.talktofrank.com/drug/poppers#how-it-looks-tastes-and-smells
    https://www.release.org.uk/drugs/alkyl-nitrites-poppers/law#:~:text=The%20Medicines%20Control%20Agency%20say,attempt%20to%20circumvents%20the%20law

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    • 32 min
    The Femme Fatale & The French President

    The Femme Fatale & The French President

    This is the story of Marguerite Steinheil, the woman who shook Paris at the turn of the 20th century with one scandal after the next…one of which involving the French president apparently dying in the midst of a sex act.
    Marguerite is an ambitious woman, but being born into a middle-class family and trapped in a marriage with a failed artist 20 years her senior, she knows her life choices are limited.
    So how did Marguerite, who became known as ‘the Red Widow’, find herself at the centre of a scandal (and it’s not even the one involving the president) with both her husband and mother dead?
    Author Sarah Horowitz joins Kate Betwixt the Sheets to share Marguerite’s story.
    You can find out more about Sarah’s book here.
    *WARNING There are adult themes and explicit descriptions about sex and death in this episode. *
    Produced by Charlotte Long and Sophie Gee. Mixed by Annie Coloe.
    Betwixt the Sheets: The History of Sex, Scandal & Society. A podcast by History Hit. 
    This episode includes music by Epidemic Sound.

    See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

    • 38 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
101 Ratings

101 Ratings

E.Maura ,

Gem of An Historical Podcast

I’m not even sure how I stumbled across this podcast, but I’m certainly happy that I did. Great show!!!

0o00000ooo ,

I’m obsessed

Something about me is I love a history documentary from History Hit (I’ve watched one to wind down almost every night for 3 years), another thing about me is I love the Whores of Yore Twitter. Imagine my absolute shock and surprise when those two worlds collided and I discovered this podcast. Kate Lister is an absolute gem; charismatic and charming and so passionate about what she does. I could go on and on all day about how much I love this podcast, before this I felt like podcasts couldn’t keep my attention but I’ve actually found time to listen— I just wish there were more episodes!

hagfish slime ,

Frustratingly Shallow

If the fact that sex existed prior to the 1950s blows your mind, this may be the podcast for you.

Any episode promising a broad topic is going to be maybe 2 minutes of interview time about the majority of the topics history before settling in probably modern europe. This would be less annoying if they changed the titles or description to reflect the content, like ‘sex toys in the 19th century’ or ‘the history of the vibrator’ for an episode that barely touches on anything else. Maybe I wanted to learn about ancient dildos in the ‘sex toys’ episode!

The interviewees sometimes have a notable agenda that strongly detracts from the history being presented. the corset episode is a good example, the interviewee is desperately trying to convince the audience that wearing corsets is radical and feminist throughout history, rather than just presenting the item’s actual complex history and the nuance surrounding it. (Lets be clear- there’s a huge difference between understanding and analyzing history through an intersectional feminist lens, and presenting a whitewashed or incomplete view to be appealing to your personal tastes).

The host’s questions tend to be observations of ‘Wow this is awesome and girlpower!’ ‘Oh no! This is NOT awesome or girlpower!’. ‘Wow, this is SO naughty!’ Sometimes it seems like she isn’t listening or doesn’t understand the topic, I would hope that’s just an attempt at being a voice for the audience, but it’s just irritating.

Maybe the show will improve as it goes on, but as it stands it’s a disappointment.

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