Sex, Pleasure & Intimacy in the Time of Capitalism

Tishk Barzanji

Sex has been a taboo topic for over a century since the Victorian era. When we do talk about sex, we usually talk about how to have safer sex and birth control. But what about pleasure? What about deeply connecting with someone? What about intimacy? What about RADICAL LOVE?

80 years and tens of millions of dollars in research at Harvard point to one thing: “happiness is love”. Healthy, happy relationships are literally life-saving and humans are hard-wired for connection. Despite mounting evidence from psychology to neuroscience that reveals how much humans need each other to survive and thrive, many people struggle with creating intimate and meaningful relationships. In a world that’s overwhelmingly hyperconnected through technology, nearly half of Americans said that they felt lonely, isolated from others or left out. 

Myths about gender and sexuality prevent us from expressing our authentic selves as well as deeply connecting with one another.  How are we socialized to behave, think, and feel about our sexual lives, our sexual pleasure, and our relationships? Let’s talk about what’s getting in the way of deep connection and how they’re all linked. 

This Olio explores how politics, money, power, and toxic masculinity are barriers to some of the most fulfilling aspects of our lives: our connections. Let’s think of new possibilities for community by strengthening how we relate to ourselves and each other.  




Location: Strand Bookstore

828 Broadway, New York, NY 10003

The Rare Book Room at Strand Bookstore boasts an elegant venue for our Friday night residency.




Interdisciplinary Learning with the Best Professors


Think Olio is not about learning a new skill or adding credentials to your resume. It is about getting together with other people and expanding our worldview. It exists as a conduit for fruitful discussions, a dissent from the regurgitation of facts, and an embrace of new perspectives.


Learn about joining the Scenius for $10 / month



Other upcoming Olios


Jul 21

Olio Breakfast Club | The Stranger

Taught by Patricia Kim
10 a.m. at Greenberg's Bagels @ North 3rd St. Market

Sign Up - $25

Jul 23

The American Soundscape

Taught by Christina Katopodis
7 p.m. at Living Room

Sign Up - $15

Jul 25

Frida's Fragrance: Art, Scent, & Persona

Taught by Jessica Murphy
7:30 p.m. at The William Vale Hotel

Sign Up - $20

Jul 31

Prospect Park Philosophy | Art vs. Reality

Taught by Geoff Klock
7:15 p.m. at Prospect Park (Grand Army Entrance)

Sign Up - $15

Aug 2

OlioHouse Weekend | Midsummer Night’s Dream

Taught by Geoff Klock
7:30 p.m. at OlioHouse | Wassaic, NY

Sign Up - $200

Aug 14

The Allure of Masculinity

Taught by Kim Nguyen
7:30 p.m. at The Assemblage | NoMad

Sign Up - $15

Aug 17

OlioHouse Weekend | Scenius (Un)Skillshare

Taught by Lauren Hudson
2 p.m. at OlioHouse | Wassaic, NY

Sign Up - $100

Aug 20

Dementia Americana: The Persistence of Forgetting

Taught by Ward Regan
7:30 p.m. at Nowadays

Sign Up - $15

Aug 21

Philosophy Club | "God is Dead"

Taught by Jeanne Proust
7:30 p.m. at Living Room

Sign Up - $15

Sep 19

OlioTrip | Cienfuegos, Cuba

Taught by Teresita Levy
10 a.m. at Cienfuegos, Cuba

Sign Up - $


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