What is the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the word Sadomasochism also affectionately known as S&M?
My mind immediately does to Madonna’s video hot video “Erotica”. I can still hear her purr “erotic, erotic, put your hands all over my body” in my mind. I will never forget seeing Madonna in the black mask wearing a tight black dress looking ready to dominate. Then there were the erotic visuals in the video of people chained up, licking each other, kissing, and other titillating positions. I get aroused just thinking about it.
Lately there has been alot of conversation about S&M especially due to the overwhelming popular book, Shades of Grey. Thee is however a lack of real knowledge about this fetish. There are so many myths floating around it can scare people away from it. Let’s break it down and keep it real.
S&M stands for two words, sadism and masochism, which refers to the receiving of pleasure from consensual sexual acts involving the infliction of pain and/or humiliation. There is a world of pleasure filled opportunities that fall into S&M play. This can include: spanking, whipping, slapping, hickeys, biting, and other sexual activities. The amount of pain required to achieve sexual arousal between individuals who participate in S&M varies from mild to severe pain with some even getting off on being mutilated.
The term sadomasochism comes from a combo of two sex driven aristocrat writers, Marquis de Sade and Leopold von Sacher-Masoch.
Most people have heard of the French writer Marquis de Sade, due to his reputation of being a libertine who took his writing to intense sexual
levels. His books covered various forms of sexuality, you name it and he wrote about it. His work was centered on sadist behavior (inflicting pain) where normally the sex was non consensual in most cases. His works include Justine, Juliette, and 120 Days of Sodomy. De Sade spent about 32 years of his life in insane asylums for his scandalous writing, numerous sexual assaults, and poisoning several women with the Spanish fly right before he had anal sex with them. To this day de Sade is one of world’s most famous misogynistic pornographers.
Leopold Sacher-Masoch was a Baron who wrote the book Venus in Furs which was the game changer for S&M. The book is what is known to have established the concept of mistress and slave dynamics. It is said that during his childhood, Sacher-Masoch heard stories of cruelty from his wet nurse and father which lead him to begin his fantasies of dominating women. In 1886 the psychiatrist and sexologist, Richard Freiherr von Krafft-Ebing, coined the term “masochism” in his book Psychopathia Sexualis. Before Sacher-Masoch’s death in an asylum, masochism was already included in medical dictionary as a psychosexual disorder which a person derives pleasure by having his/her sexual partner inflict physical or emotional pain.