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


Sep 17

Our Pornographic Education

Taught by Kim Nguyen
7:30 p.m. at Crystal Lake

Sign Up - $15

Sep 18

Mediated Intimacy: The Dating App Landscape

Taught by Pani Farvid
7 p.m. at Living Room

Sign Up - $15

Sep 19

* Sold Out * OlioTrip | Cienfuegos, Cuba

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

Sign Up - $

Sep 23

New York, The Neoliberal City

Taught by Lauren Hudson
7:30 p.m. at The Old Stone House

Sign Up - $15

Sep 26

Living Room Salon | 'Dirty Computers', Voice & Visibility

Taught by Kashema Hutchinson
8 p.m. at Living Room

Sign Up - $15

Sep 29

Olio FieldTrip | Skateboarding and Modern Art

Taught by Ted Barrow
1 p.m. at Living Room

Sign Up - $30

Oct 4

Modern Privacy: Reclaiming Our Self Narratives

Taught by Lawrence Cappello
7 p.m. at Strand Bookstore

Sign Up - $20

Oct 15

Olio Seminar | Kafka will Ruin Your Life and Make You Laugh About it

Taught by Geoff Klock
7:30 p.m. at Strong Rope Brewery

Sign Up - $60

Oct 22

The Fear of Leisure

Taught by Jeanne Proust
7:30 p.m. at Threes Brewing // Greenpoint

Sign Up - $15


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