Out in the Open

From Ancient Rome to the utopian throne: Experts explore the history and future of public restrooms

From the communal bathrooms of ancient Rome, to the men only public bathrooms of Victorian England, to segregated bathrooms in the southern United States, bathrooms can tell us a lot about societies and their values.
The Baths of the Cyclopes (Dennis Jarvis )
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From the communal bathrooms of ancient Rome, to the men only public bathrooms of Victorian England, bathrooms can tell us a lot about societies and their values.

Laura Norén is the co-editor of "Toilet: Public Restrooms and the Politics of Sharing" and she shares her top five highlights in the history of public bathrooms.

Lezlie Lowe, Halifax journalist and self-described "public bathroom obsessive," has spent a lot of time researching public bathrooms. Her vision for the ultimate public bathroom of the future is one that is spacious, gender neutral, has space for babies and attendants for cleanliness and security.