Vern Bullough

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Vern Leroy Bullough (July 24, 1928 – June 21, 2006) was an American historian and sexologist.[1]

He was a distinguished professor emeritus at the State University of New York (SUNY) at Buffalo, Faculty President at California State University, Northridge,[2] a past president of the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality, past Dean of natural and social sciences at the Buffalo State College in Buffalo, New York, one of the founders of the American Association for the History of Nursing, and a member of the editorial board of Paidika: The Journal of Paedophilia.[3]


Born in Salt Lake City, Utah, Bullough earned his A.B. at the University of Utah in 1951. He then attended the University of Chicago, earning an A.M. in 1951 and a Ph.D in 1954, and was a university fellow during 1953-1954.[4] In 1981 he received a B.S.N. from California State University, Long Beach.

According to the university:

He is the author, co-author, or editor of nearly 50 books, has contributed chapters to another 75 or so, and has over 100 refereed articles, and hundreds of more popular ones. His expertise encompasses several fields: sexology, history, community health and public policy, contraception and population issues. He has lectured in most of the 50 states and 20 or so foreign countries including China, Russia, Greece, Egypt, Ghana, et al. Among his many awards is the Alfred Kinsey Award for distinguished sex research.[citation needed]

He began teaching at Youngstown University, where he was an Assistant Professor of History and Social Science from 1954-1959. He then moved to California State University, Northridge in 1959, and was promoted to Associate Professor in 1962, and to Professor in 1965.[5]

In 1992 Bullough received a Distinguished Humanist Service Award from the International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU), and served as co-Chairman of the IHEU (1995-1996). In 2003 he was one of the signers of the Humanist Manifesto.[6] Today Bullough is remembered mainly as an eminent sexologist and medical historian, and a pioneer in the scientific study of alternative sexual behaviors. He was married first to Bonnie Bullough and had five children,[7] the oldest of whom died in childhood in Egypt in 1967.[8] After the death of Bonnie Bullough in 1996 he married Gwen Brewer.[9] He died in Westlake Village in 2006.[10]


Bullough's archives reside at the University Library at California State University, Northridge,[11] where an endowment in his name funds special lectures, scholarships, and collection development in sex and gender studies.[12]


  1. ^ White, Todd (2015). "Bullough, Vern Leroy". International Encyclopedia of Human Sexuality. Wiley.
  2. ^ Broesamle, John (1993). Suddenly a Giant: A History of California State University, Northridge. Northridge, CA: Santa Susana Press. p. 60.
  3. ^ Hearings Before and Special Reports Made by Committee on Armed Services of the House of Representatives, 96th Congress, 1st session (1979). United States Government Printing Office. 1993. p. 107.
  4. ^ Directory of American Scholars, 6th ed. (Bowker, 1974), Vol. I, p. 81.
  5. ^ Directory of American Scholars, 6th ed. (Bowker, 1974), Vol. I, p. 81.
  6. ^ "Notable Signers". American Humanist Association. Archived from the original on 13 November 2016. Retrieved 15 September 2012.
  7. ^ Elwood-Akers, Virginia (Summer 2014). "Thanks & Recognition: Vern Bullough".
  8. ^ "Peek in the Stacks: The Vern L. Bullough Papers". 24 August 2018.
  9. ^ New York Times:Vern Leroy Bullough, 77, Noted Medical Historian, Dies
  10. ^ *Woo, Elaine (July 2, 2006). Vern Bullough, 77; Prolific Author Was Scholar of Sex History. Los Angeles Times
  11. ^ "Peek in the Stacks: The Vern L. Bullough Papers". 24 August 2018.
  12. ^ Elwood-Akers, Virginia (Summer 2014). "Thanks & Recognition: Vern Bullough".

Further reading[edit]

Published works[edit]

  • 1977: A Bibliography of Prostitution. New York: Garland (with others)
  • 1982: Sexual Practices and the Medieval Church. New York: Prometheus Books ISBN 0-87975-268-8
  • 1994: Human sexuality: an encyclopedia. New York: Garland
  • 2004: Universities, Medicine and Science in the Medieval West, Ashgate

External links[edit]