Skip to main content. Log In Sign Up. Introduction 2 Background 4 2. Methods 5 Field of Study 7 Limitations 8 3. Analysis 12 The normative perspective 14 The deviant perspective 17 5. Introduction Sexuality, how it is supposed to be and, especially in that context, how it is not supposed to be has been a topic of discussion for a very long time. It has, however, also been a topic of controversies and one that separates academia into roughly two parts.
The anthropology of sexuality has over the years of its existence been subject to criticism of different forms. The generally accepted way of practicing sexuality, which ranks highest in this order, is
Psychopathia sexualis google books as reproductive sex between married heterosexual monogamous couples, followed by non-monogamous and Psychopathia sexualis google books heterosexual partners, which thus have a lower social status Rubin It can be assumed that non-normative sex is ranked even lower.
BDSM indicates various imbalances of power between partners in order to achieve heightened pleasure both physically and psychologically. This form of sexuality is often misunderstood and will be further explained in the background section at the end of this chapter. For now, I will only include those practices that involve consenting partners.
This essay is built upon literature studies, participant observation and interviews with BDSM practitioners to gain insight in how those affected by this stigma interpret and handle their outsider status. It calls for the inclusion of everyone, independent of their sexual preferences or interests.
Even if it is used only within the community of BDSM practitioners, this essay intends to show its importance even beyond the border of closed groups. Consequently, I am trying to keep a, under the circumstances, neutral position and analyse both sides critically in order to find out how exclusion and stigmatisation is established. This essay, therefore, attempts to shine a light on the intertwined structures that keep prejudices in place and the dividing line firm. Due to the stigmatisation of BDSM
Psychopathia sexualis google books the uninvolved referred to here as sexually normative part of most Western societies, most members of the BDSM community keep their sexual preferences secret.
Based on this latter point, this is why gatherings of any form, both in the physical world and online are always either highly restricted, or kept hidden from the public eye.
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There are very few instances, such as the annual Pride Parade in Stockholm, where the sexually normative and the deviant part of society come in contact with each other. I will take a closer look at this event in the analytical part. Anthropologist Fredrik Barth investigated groups and "Psychopathia sexualis google books" the boundaries between them are maintained.
Even though Barth, more specifically, wrote about ethnic groups, his theory of distinction between groups through values, morals and the focus on specific features that are significant for this distinction can be applied to the dichotomy between normative and deviant sexual behaviour as well and will be further elaborated in the analytical part of this essay Barth Consequently, especially when writing about stigma and how it is forged, the sociological concept of labelling as presented by Richard Hawkins and Gary Tiedeman will illuminate the process of becoming deviant and also that which leads to the perception of something being deviant.
Concerning the latter, contemporary research will be used as an example for forging an anti-deviant view in Western societies. Summarising all of the above, this essay tries to illustrate a holistic picture on the intertwined mechanisms of prejudices, stigma and concealment.
Therefore, it is crucial to shine a light on
Psychopathia sexualis google books two perspectives normative and deviantwhich both, as I will argue, influence the
Psychopathia sexualis google books of the borders between the sexually normative and the sexually deviant part of Western societies. The next chapter reviews the methods used for my data collection, as well as some thoughts on reflexivity and limitations of this study.
After that, a summary of anthropological and sociological theories used in this essay, a review of examples of sexually normative research will follow. The analytical part will, however, concentrate on contemporary normative sexuality research.
Whereas the first part of the analysis investigates the part normative views play in the stigmatisation of BDSM, the second part will elaborate how the BDSM community separates itself from the rest of society and thus prevents open dialogue and mutual understanding. The last part of the analysis will explain how those different views together contribute to the maintenance of a contemporary stigma surrounding BDSM. These different concepts can be intertwined with each other and are often acted out in combination with each other and to varying extent.
It is crucial to note
Psychopathia sexualis google books consent to those practices from all involved individuals is not only an option, but the very foundation upon which this subculture is built. One of the core morals in the BDSM culture worldwide is safe, sane and consensual short SSCmeaning that whatever is done between partners should be safe and not risking any actual damage that was not intended. Both partners should be sane, which means not under the influence of alcohol or drugs and mentally stable.
Two other core concepts that can be found online and that "Psychopathia sexualis google books" hosts use for their BDSM related events are the concepts of respect and the concept of acceptance. Respect is a prerequisite of every member of the community. Disrespect towards any individual out of any reason is frowned upon and seen as a sign of a weak character. Acceptance is a part of that respect, but in the context of BDSM there is a specific case that I would like to illuminate.
Even if most forms of deviant sexuality that involve imbalance of power constitute as BDSM, it has
Psychopathia sexualis google books be acknowledged that these forms sometimes differ greatly from each other. Despite these differences, mocking someone for their preference is utterly uncommon and has not appeared during the fieldwork of this study. Situations where one was downgraded due to his or her sexual preference have, however, occurred to my informants only in contact with individuals or groups that are not connected to the BDSM scene.
Methods Methodologically the data collection for this essay includes three different parts and methods. The first part is literature studies of books and articles that as a main or a minor topic address either BDSM or sexual deviance in general in Western societies.
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To access this data, the library of the Stockholm University and its online search engine was used with small additions in the form of their fee-based order service for articles that can not be found in the library. Other articles were accessed through the online libraries Researchgate and Academia that require a verified account in order to access most files. The interviews that comprise the second part of the data collection were conducted either face-to-face with informants living in Stockholm or online, both orally via the voice call service Skype or in written form via email or different messengers services with informants not living in Stockholm.
The eight informants
Psychopathia sexualis google books interviewed are between 22 and 52 years of age, both male and female and origin from Sweden, Germany and England. Interviews were held as semi-structured or unstructured interviews. Due to the sensitivity of the topic and the information that informants shared with me, they all want to remain anonymous.
I chose mostly
Psychopathia sexualis google books interviews, as I only in a few occasions could sit down with an informant for a longer time and most of the information for this essay is taken from conversations that were held just about everywhere in and around places where BDSM practitioners meet with various numbers of participants Russel Bernard Elena Sperner Stockholm University!
It is crucial to mention here, that I myself am
Psychopathia sexualis google books with the BDSM culture and therefore have to consider advantages and disadvantages of this position. It is due to these previous experiences that I already was a member in certain communities, such as the predominantly Scandinavian BDSM webpage darkside.
This is also the reason why I already knew individuals with deviant sexual preferences, which made the first contact and access to information far easier than for an
Psychopathia sexualis google books. I have, however, never before been a particularly active member of the community. I have not been actively participating in forum discussions and have not attended any gatherings, such as workshops, afterworks or parties.
During my preparation for this essay it was, due to my earlier contacts and already established membership in the community, easy to find BDSM related events to attend for both the observing participation and interviews.
While getting to know people at those gatherings, there was one aspect that stood out in almost every conversation or unstructured interview: My experience within the BDSM culture and me not being an outsider was the main motivation for people to trust me and talk to me about more sensitive topics, especially since the community as a whole is rather secretive itself.
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This approach usually lessened hesitations and enabled the informants to feel more comfortable. DeWalt and Billie R. However, I would, in this context, argue differently. The actual places and individuals that my fieldwork is grounded on were new to me.
Psychopathia sexualis google books hours walking around quietly, just absorbing the atmosphere, the smells, the sounds of a place, just because it was all new and unknown to me.
On the other hand, I was familiar with BDSM in general and the sight of otherwise unusual materials latex, leather, metal or events extraordinary submissiveness, violence, sex in front of an audience was not as distracting for me as perhaps it would have been for someone naive to this culture.
Furthermore, I agree with Russel Bernard that it is impossible to be absolutely objective and any kind of research always involves some kind of bias Russel Bernard Therefore, it is even more important for me to reflect on my data and my analysis.
I claim that the mere topic of my essay objects a heavy bias. In searching for the reason for the stigma against BDSM both outside and inside of the subculture, I cannot take either side and will critically question them both.
"Psychopathia sexualis google books" emic approach to a field that has otherwise mostly been studied from an etic perspective may in fact lead to new insights. Field of Study The fieldwork for this study was carried out mainly in Stockholm, Sweden.
Apart from interviews with members of the BDSM community from other countries, all observing participation results were collected in and around Stockholm. Since the community in Stockholm is rather secretive, information about meetings were mostly collected from the online community darkside.
On this homepage a registered member can find a calendar of different events in all of Sweden on every day of the week. Most events are being held in Sweden's two biggest cities, Stockholm and Gothenburg. There are between four to ten events logged everyday, usually more on weekends and a little less in the beginning of a week.
Depending on the location of the event, it can be allowed or forbidden to act out certain roles or engage in sexual activities. Secrecy is ever present during those gatherings, in form of for example the total ban of picture taking devices such as cameras or mobile phones, to secure the anonymity of all participants.
The age limit is up to 30 years and this rule allows no exceptions in order to create an environment where younger people can be amongst like-minded ones and to reduce fear and hesitations for people with no prior experience. No registration or the like was required to attend
Psychopathia sexualis google books meeting. Furthermore, I frequently attended an after work club called Kinky Bar Bizarre on thursdays, where I also found most of my informants.
This place is hidden in a warehouse, without any hint on what is going on inside and required registration online.
This event has no dress code, but encourages guests online to change to a more fitting attire, as they have a changing room and lockers to rent Darkside homepage. One evening in November I also attended the internationally known Unleashed party.
Here, a very strict dress code has to be followed and one needs to buy a ticket in advance, as they do not allow spontaneous guests. Some understandings of the basic morals and
Psychopathia sexualis google books of the BDSM culture come from my earlier experiences and are based on encounters with BDSM practitioners from the time when I was living in Germany. Limitations As the aim of this study is to examine the effects of stigma on BDSM and how it is maintained, the BDSM culture as explained by informants and as observed in Stockholm will therefore not be questioned.
This essay does not include a judgement "Psychopathia sexualis google books" whether practicing BDSM has positive or negative effects on the practitioners. No psychological reasons for participating in BDSM activities or for developing certain preferences will be discussed either.
Also, I will not discuss the question of gender since my own experience within the subculture and the fieldwork done for this essay indicates that it does not play a significant role in the context of stigmatisation. Both genders experience shame likewise, independent of the fact that they might be judged differently or for different reasons by society. Finally, it also has to be considered that the observant participation for this essay is carried out in just one city in northern Europe and is therefore not representative for the BDSM community worldwide.
Furthermore, it is evident that the small number of informants from each country in no way represents the general opinion of BDSM practitioners in Sweden, Germany or England. Theory This essay is mainly built upon anthropological perspectives on Queer Theory and Social Construction.
Furthermore, the concept of labelling, mainly used in sociology, will be put into an anthropological perspective in the context of sexuality and
Psychopathia sexualis google books the definition of sexual deviance. Navigeringsmeny
The anthropology of secrecy as described by Lindstrom will also be taken into account. Psychopathia Sexualis: With Especial Reference to Contrary Sexual Instinct: a Medico-legal Study. Front Cover. Richard Krafft-Ebing, Charles Gilbert Chaddock. Psychopathia Sexualis. Front Cover.
Richard Krafft-Ebing Psychopathia Sexualis, with Especial Reference to Contrary Sexual Instinct Richard Krafft- Ebing. År publicerade läkaren Richard von Krafft-Ebing sin studie Psychopathia Sexualis där han använde termen metamorphis sexualis paranoia för att beskriva .