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A Defense of Masochism

by Phillips, Anita

  • ISBN: 9780312192587
  • ISBN10: 0312192584

A Defense of Masochism

by Phillips, Anita

  • List Price: $22.95
  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publish date: 09/01/1998
  • ISBN: 9780312192587
  • ISBN10: 0312192584
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Description: Sado-masochism is a growing sexual phenomenon of the nineties and a major influence on art, fashion, literature and advertising. While our culture may have an easier grasp on sadism, masochism often seems more complicated and elusive. Who are the masochists and why do they partake?

In the tradition of such candid works as Naomi Wolf's The Beauty Myth and Camille Paglia's Sexual Personae, A Defense of Masochism presents us a cogent, popular examination of this uniquely human preoccupation. Drawing on a wide range of literary, psychoanalytic, and cultural sources, from Leopold von Sacher-Masoch's Venus in Furs to David Lynch's Blue Velvet, Anita Phillips shows that our understanding of masochism is wildly skewed. She intelligently rescues masochism from the clinical discourses that have named it a pathological sickness and returns it to a context of diverse human experience and artistic expression. She also takes issue with aspects of feminism and psychoanalysis, and introduces controversial ideas about perversion and perversity which challenge the legacy of traditional sexology. What emerges is a fresh and fascinating modern view of longing, curiosity, and eroticism.

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