Paul Reynolds

Paul Reynolds

Paul taught at Universities in Hull, York and Leeds in areas as varied as political economy, political sociology, public administration, politics and social sciences before taking up a lectureship at Edge Hill in 1992. In his career here he has led the Contemporary Political Studies, Social Psychology and Sociology undergraduate degrees, as well as being seconded to the central team that gained Research Degree Awarding Powers for Edge Hill University in 2005-2009. He currently leads the Sociology undergraduate programme and provides leadership to the MRes programme in the social sciences, as well as supervising PhD students in his broad areas of research: sexual ethics, politics and culture; radical social and political theory and philosophy (with particular reference to Marxism); the intellectual and professional in contemporary societies; and research ethics.

His current teaching and research reflects his main trans-disciplinary interest in the intersection of ethics and politics with identity and difference, with particular reference to sexuality. Paul leads teaching in the 2nd and 3rd year modules on sexuality and social and cultural theory and analysis in the Sociology Programme.

His current and ongoing writing focuses on sexual ethics and politics, focused on the relationship between sexual consent, sexual literacy and sexual well-being in its deviirse forms, and the problems of sexual law, legitimacy and citizenship. He also writes on Marxist theory – mainly in its intersections with sexuality and the phenomenal body – and the radical intellectual. Paul has a number of international and national research roles and positions and measures of esteem and you can find out more about them below. In the academic year 2017-2018, Paul will also hold the position of Visiting Professor at the University of Gent.


  •  BA (Hons) Social Studies (Hull University), 1984


  • SPY 3042 Desire, Identity, Difference
  • SPY 3035 International Fieldtrip Module
  • SPY 3111 Social, Cultural and Political Ideas
  • SPY 2137 Sexualities: Identities, Theory, Politics
  • SPY3031 Dissertations
  • MRes / PhD Supervisor


  • Sexual ethics and politics: consent, responsibility, difference, literacy and well-being in the context of sex law and citizenship
  • Theorising the intellectual and professional in radical theory and politics;
  • Marxism as radical social critique, with particular reference to ethics and sexuality;
  • Processes of ethical deliberation, research ethics and research ethics governance.


Journal Articles

Moore, A. & Reynolds, P. (2016) ‘Against the Ugliness of Age: Towards an Erotics of the Aging Sexual Body’ Inter Alia A Journal of Queer Studies 11a 88-105

Claes T and Reynolds P (2013) Why Sexual Ethics and Politics? Why Now? An Introduction to the Journal in the Journal of the International Network of Sexual Ethics and Politics Vol 1 p 5-18

Reynolds, P. (2010) (with Jennifer Burr) ‘The wrong paradigm? Social research and the predicates of ethical scrutiny’ in Research Ethics Review Volume 6 no. 4 p128-133

Reynolds, P. (2010) ‘Critical Review of “The Charmed Circle of Ideology” by Geoff Boucher for the Symposia on “The Charmed Circle of Ideology”, Global Discourse [Online], 2: I

Reynolds, P. (2010) Seksuele toestemming ontrafeld. Ethiek en Maatschappij, 13(1): 68-90

Reynolds, P. (2010) ‘Disentangling Privacy and Intimacy: Intimate Citizenship, Private Boundaries and Public Transgressions’ in ‘Human Affairs’ Special Issue On ‘Intimacy And The Civic Arena: Exploring Needs, Expectations & Conflicts; Negotiating Transformations, Agreements & Rules’ – Volume 20 No 1 p33-42

Reynolds, P. (2008) with Jennifer Burr ‘Thinking ethically about genetic inheritance: liberal rights, communitarianism and the right to privacy for parents of donor insemination children ’Journal of Medical Ethics 34; 281-284

Reynolds, P. (2002) ‘Introduction’ and ‘Rape, Law and Consent: The Scope and Limits to Sexual Regulation by Law’ in Contemporary Issues in Law Volume 6 No.1 – Special Edition on Rape and Sexual Consent, edited by Paul Reynolds, p1-7 & 92-102

Reynolds, P. (2001) Accounting for Sexuality: the Scope and Limitations of Census Data on Sexual Identity and Difference in Radical Statistics Issue 78 p 63-76


(2017 – forthcoming October) (with Allison Moore) Childhood and Sexuality: Contemporary Issues and Debates Houndsmill; Palgrave Macmillan

Reynolds, P. (2004) (with Mark Cowling – editors) Making Sense of Sexual Consent for Aldershot: Ashgate. (My contribution includes (with Mark Cowling) Introduction (p 1-14), (with Allison Moore) Feminist Approaches to Sexual Consent: A Critique (p 29-43), and The Quality of Consent: Making Sense of an Elusive Concept (p93-108)

Reynolds, P. (2002) (with Hugh Mackay and Wendy Maples) Social Science in Action: Investigating the Information Society London Routledge (also 2001, Milton Keynes: Open University)

Reynolds, P. (2000) Introduction: Marxism at the Millennium and Beyond? [with Mark Cowling] and ‘Post-Marxism : Radical Political Theory and Practice Beyond Marxism? In Mark Cowling and Paul Reynolds (eds) Marxism, The Millennium and Beyond London: Palgrave p 1-26 & 257-279

Book Chapters

Reynolds, P (2018 forthcoming) “Incest.” In Merril D. Smith, ed., Encylopedia of Rape and Sexual Violence. 2 vols. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO, 2018.

Reynolds P. (2017) Complicity as Political Rhetoric: Some Ethical and Political Reflections in Afxentis, A, Dunford R and Neu M (eds. 2017) Exploring Complicity: Concepts, Cases and Critique London: Rowman and Littlefield.

Reynolds P (2015) ‘Women’s agency and the fallacy of autonomy: the example of rape and sexual consent’ in Marway H and Widdows H (eds) Women and Violence: The Agency of Victims and Perpetrators London: Palgrave MacMillan p197-215.

Hallett, F., McAteer, M, Reynolds P and Shortt D (2015) To Believe, To Think, To Know – To Teach?: Ethical Deliberation in Teacher Education in Heilbronn R and Foreman-Peck L (eds) Philosophical Perspectives on Teacher Education Oxford: Wiley Blackwell  p89-108.

Reynolds P (2014) Solidarity through Practice? MacIntyre’s Revolutionary Aristotelianism: A Marxist Reading (p58-76) and Introduction (p1-12 in Boyd SH and Walter MA (eds) Cultural Difference and Social Solidarity: Solidarities and Social Function Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars.

Reynolds, P. (2013) Thinking the Radical Public Intellectual: The Exemplar of Howard Zinn in Bird S, Silver A and Yesnowitz J Agitation with a Smile: Howard Zinn’s Legacies and the Future of Activism Boulder: Paradigm Publishers p 51-65.

Reynolds, P. (2010) ‘Some Remarks on the Depoliticising Relationship between Ethics and Science in Contemporary Radical and Post-Marxist Thought’ in McSweeney and Lin (eds) Representation and Contestation: Cultural Politics in a Political Century, New York: Rudopi p 204-231

Reynolds, P. (2010) (with John McSweeney) ‘The Global Nexus of Culture, Representation and Politics: Towards Ethics’ in McSweeney and Lin (eds) Representation and Contestation: Cultural Politics in a Political Century, New York: Rudopi p 235-249

Reynolds, P. (2009 – with Allison Moore) ‘‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’: Rights, Responsibilities and the Non-Disclosure of Sexually Transmitted Infections’ in Moore A and Zuccarini C (2009) Persons and Sexuality: Inter-disciplinary Reflections Oxford: Inter-Disciplinary Press p 151-163

Reynolds, P. (2004) Entries on ‘Date Rape’, ‘Foreplay’, ‘Genderfuck’, ‘Non-heterosexual’, ‘Paraphilia’, ‘Queer’, ‘Queer Theory’ in Eadie J (ed) Sexuality: The Essential Glossary London: Arnold: 2004.

Reynolds, P. (2004) ‘Marxism and the Social Construction of Sexuality. Some Considerations and a Research Agenda’ in Hekma, G (ed.) Past and Present of Radical Sexual Politics. Amsterdam: University of Amsterdam, pp185 – 193

Reynolds, P. (2002) ‘Some Thoughts on Marxism and the Social Construction of Sexuality’ in Pasteur, P., Neideracher. S.and Mesner, M. (eds.) Sexualitat, Unterschichtenmilieus und ArbeiterInnenbewegung, Wien: Akademische Verlagsanstalt

Periodicals, Articles and Other Publications:

(2013) Toestemming en seksuele ethiek in Filosofie (Special Issue – Filosofie en Seks(ualiteiet) Nov/Dec p21-29

(2013) The World We Have Won? An Interview with Jeffrey Weeks in the Journal of the International Network of Sexual Ethics and Politics Vol 1 p 69-84 (Interviewer)

(2012) Naked Royals Reveal Limits of Press Freedom in The Chartist November/December 2012 p22-23

(2012) Another Side of Adam Smith in The Chartist March/April 2012 p23-24

Additional information:

Co-Convenor of the International Network for Sexual Ethics and Politics (INSEP) Co-Chief Editor of its Journal (JINSEP)

Co-Director of the Cultural Difference and Social Solidarity International Network (that ‘seeks to promote ethical, responsible, and reasoned discussions, conferences, publications, and literary and artistic events on issues of cultural difference and social solidarity’)

Member editorial board of Historical Materialism: International Journal of Research in Critical Marxist Theory (with Brill publishers)

Member advisory editorial board for Studies in Marxism: A Journal of Marxist Thought

Visiting Professor at the University of Gent

Chief External Examiner; University of the West of England,

External Examiner sociology/psychology University Centre Blackburn College

External Examiner MRes Humanities, University of Worcester.

Previously, Externally examiner undergraduate programmes at the University of Abertay, University of Glasgow Caledonian, University of Wales in Newport and the University of Bolton, and also the MRes Programme at London Metropolitan University and the MA.DPhil programmes for PEAK (Research Ethics Centre), University of Keele

Examined Postgraduate Research Degrees at the University of Keele and the University of Central Lancashire

Independent Chair, University of Limerick (Ireland) Research Ethics Committee

Held visiting lectureships and fellowships at the Department of Politics and European Studies, Palecky University, Olomouc, Czech Republic (2005), and the Centre for Everyday Life, Murdoch University, Perth, Australia (2004) respectively;

Given invited lectures on keynote addresses on sexual ethics and politics and radical theory and philosophy across the globe, including Australia, Canada, Czech Republic, Hungary, Netherlands, Russia, Siberia (and the United Kingdom)