Document Type


Publication Date

August 2004

Publication Title

American Sociological Association Annual Meeting


Capitalist Institutions, Sexual Cultures, Condom Commodities, Social Aspects of Production, Economic Neoliberalism


Gender and Sexuality | Inequality and Stratification | Other Sociology | Sociology | Work, Economy and Organizations


In the late 1700s, condoms were luxury items for the affluent in Western Europe, but by the 1970s, the US government gave free condoms out to poor women in Third World areas. Moreover condom availability has increased dramatically since the global emergence of the AIDS pandemic in the 1980s, adding to the already fervent social stigmatization and political contentions on morality, sexuality, and wellbeing that condom use brings. This paper focuses on the strategically joint-relationship between manufacturing firms and governments to foster distinct profit-oriented condom social relations and moral-symbolic regimes of sexual cultures. Proposing a sex-situated theory of capitalist firms, the paper examines the crucial social aspect of condom production, focusing on the changes in the condom manufacturing industry from its initial colonial-"warfare" period (1880s-1930s), its period of massive welfare-state expansion (1940s-1970s), and its recent neoliberal consolidation (1980s-2000s).


Year is incorrectly listed as 2003 instead of 2004.