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Safe, Sane, and Consensual - Contemporary Perspectives on Sadomasochism

Edited by Darren Langdridge and Meg Barker. Palgrave Macmillian, 2007

Key Elements: Using contributions from different authors in each chapter this book explores all of the elements of sadomasochism. Historical, psychological, social, and transcendental perspectives on sadomasochism are given from the points of views of contributing authors who have experienced it and/or approach the topic from a non judgmental and informative point of view.

Part One- Introducing Sadomasochism

Chapter One-Situating Sadomasochism
Highlights historical psychological perspective of evaluating sadomasochism. Still classified as a psychological disorder by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of the Psychiatric Association. (DSM-IV). It rests alongside child sexual abuse and rape as an individual sexual pathology. This chapter explores how throughout the book sadomasochism (S/M) is being evaluated by different academics, post feminist social scientist, psychologists, and others. The terminology and structure of the book are both also explained in this chapter.
Chapter Two-The Cultural Formation of Sadomasochism. History and Analysis
This chapter looks at S/M as part of a wider cultural context that includes sexual cultural evaluation. It defines sexual culture theory, sexual culture function model, and sexual culture formation model. It also contains a historical overview of S/M practice. S/M is defined using a broad perspective that includes consent, erotism, and interpersonal interactions, the dynamics of power and a cultural evaluation of S/M throughout history starting from the 1600s. This chapter also contains a summary of S/M's role in contemporary culture and the role that S/M plays in industrial society.
Chapter Three- Themes of S/M Expression
Explores the following topics:
Those that are dominant, "top","master","mistress","owner","dominatrix" and those that are submissive, "slave","bottom","property", "property" ,"owned"
Negotiation and setting limits, hard limits, soft limits, and how to negotiate is part of the relationship building including the five common features of S/M Bondage
How it is used as a method of power by limiting the movement of a partner, how bondage is used with clothing, how bandage is used on specific parts of the body, where the bondage takes place and what is used
Both psychological and physical Dominance and Submission what goes between the individuals who are dominant and those who are submissive, how the roles are used in sexual acts and the various relationships that can form between those playing the different roles
The symbols used in S/M relationships including piercing, collars, being marked, it mentions contracts, and tattooing
Physical Pain
The pain in the context of an S/M relationships, and the role of "intensity", different types of pain, "stingy" or "thuddy" types of stimulation and body parts bruising, branding, and tattooing are also discussed.
How the different forms of humiliation vary from person to person, the different forms of humiliation and how types of humiliation can change from time to time and the "cuckholding" or "cuck"
Sexual arousal to an inanimate object, the common objects, objects, and body parts
The different types of S/M relationship that exist - dominant and passive, dominant and dominant, male submissive, couples, the use of a permanent third partner through "V" where one partner has sex with two individuals who do not have sex with each other or through "Δ" where three partners have sex with each other.
Chapter Four - Is SM Pathological
This chapter tries to answer the question of whether or not S/M is pathological and it looks at the parameters being used to define "normal" sexual relationships. S/M is measured against the DSM IV criteria, the legal complications of S/M, and the relationships of those who engage in S/M. Chapter Five- Sadomasochism and The Law The legal context of S/M and the law, the law and bodily harm, autonomy and consent, and privacy rights.

Part Two - Theorizing Pain and Injury

Chapter Six - Speaking the Unspeakable: S/M and the Eroticization of Pain
The focus of this chapter is to identify the possible relationships between pain and pleasure. Is there a shared or common language used to express pain? Is torture the only context of pain?
Chapter Seven-The Bodily Practices of Consensual S/M, Spirituality and Transcendence
The relationship between S/M and the wider socio-cultural phenomena includes mysticism and spirituality in a cultural historic context this section is drawn from the chapter's author thesis. The transcendent sexual experience is mentioned. Grounded theory has been used in many of the works sighted. The link between S/M and sexual practices in order to achieve spiritual liberation is also explored. The chapter attempts to emphasis the spiritual transcendental elements of consensual S/M.
Chapter Eight- Beyond Safety: Erotic Asphyxiation (E/A) and the Limits of S/M Discourse (asphyxiophilia, hypoxyphilia, breath play or breath control play)
E/A and pushing sexual boundaries is base of the chapter and it looks at what others in the S/M community thinks about E/A. The questions of whether it is too dangerous or too destructive is explored and what the S/M community thinks of E/A.

Part Three Empirical Research

Chapter Nine - Sexual Fantasies of S/M Practitioners: The Impact of Gender and S/M Role on Fantasy Context
Sexual fantasies are acknowledged as a healthy element of sexuality and this chapter explores the relationship between S/M and sexual fantasy. Freud and Jung are mentioned and the argument that S/M includes elements of Carl Jung's theory of the unconscious into sexual play. S/M as a tool to actualize fantasy is outlined that includes research that explores power and S/M roles, fantasies, gender and sexual scripts, power, and pleasure

Chapter Ten - On Becoming a Gay SMer: A Sexual Scripting Perspective
This chapter looks at how someone becomes a gay SMer. How the initial awareness is transformed into live gay SM interactions. Sexual scripting is mentioned (the formation of an individuals sexual identity) of which there are three parts: "intrapsychic","interpersonal","cultural scenarios". Finally it discusses whether or not there is a single pattern or process in becoming a gay SMer.
Chapter Eleven- Playgrounds and New Territories: The Potential of BDSM Practices to Queer Genders
(BDSM is a broader term which stands for bondage, discipline, domination, submission, and sadomasochism)
This chapter is an analysis of the complex power structure BDSM/Queer Genders through explanation of the following: the dyke+BDSM communities in Western Europe and the USA the queering genders in the dyke + BDSM communities queer playgrounds exploring gender (through roles and fantasy) the expansion of the concept of gender or genderfucking creating sub-cultural skills through renaming/reassigning recognition, and integration It concludes with the yuppie consumption of S/M culture.

Part Four - Therapeutic Perspectives

Chapter 12 - The Power of Play: The Potential and Pitfalls in Healing of BDSM
The representation of BDSM in mainstream Western countries is evidenced in sexual stories. This chapter explores how BDSM can function as a healing narrative; BDSM is explored as a source of therapeutic value through looking at the emerging healing narrative of BDSM. The potential constraints of BDSM as a healing narrative are also discussed.
Chapter 13- Shadowplay: S/M Journeys to Our Selves
A personal account of S/M play and a journey from abuse to healing by having used S/M role playing based on Jung's theories
Chapter 14 - Some Beneficial Aspects of Exploring
Personas and Role Play in the BDSM Context Defining the three salient definitions of BDSM role, persona, and archetype. The risks of role playing are also covered.

Part Five - Bridging the Academic/Activist Divide

Chapter 15 - CARAS: An Initiative to Link Alternative Sexually Communities and Academic Researches
(CARAS is Community-Academic Consortium for Research on Alternative Sexualities) The objectives, methodology, analysis, and results of the organization are discussed in this chapter. This chapter also includes how CARAS works to address bias in research; the chapter provides background information on the organization and its role in opening a discussion around bias in sexual research through closing the gap between alternative sexual communities and the academic research community.
Chapter 16-Turning the World Upside Down: Developing a Tool for Training about S/M
This chapter is about working past the blocks that we have regarding S/M through exploring the norms and cultural perspectives of S/M.
Chapter 17- Who Is In Charge in an S/M SCENE?
The focus on this chapter is the power structure in the BDSM world, and includes three different parts Experiences of a Pro-Domme How to conduct a professional S/M session from beginning to end Total Power Exchange in a Modern Family A personal perspective on S/M in a wider cultural context.

Ties that Bind - The SM/Leather/Fetish Erotic Style. Issues, Commentaries, and Advice

Guy Baldwin, MS. Daedalus Publishing, 1993

Key Elements: The book is written for those men who have already undertaken leather/SM lifestyle and would like to additional insight into the leather/SM lifestyle.

The book is a collection of essays that the author previously published in magazines and journals (Drummer, Checkmate, The Leather Journal, Manifest Reader). It is divided into four parts that focus on different aspects of the leather/SM identity.

Part One: The Relationship Essays

Relationships with others, and self are discussed, how to maintain a romantic leather/SM relationship, group relationships, slave and master relationships, the role of the scene in a healthy relationship, and problem solving solutions are all covered.

Part Two: The Community Commentaries Essays
The importance of family, communities and interacting segments as part of a complete social network, also covered is being part of a group, the essays mention attire and norms for the leather/SM community, family, politics in the leather community, along with leather beauties and leather beast are covered.

Part Three: On Enhancing the SM Experience

Sexual communication, communicating about safer sex, sexual play, the exchanges between tops and bottoms, top behaviour, bottom behaviour, consent, communication and negotiation, recreational drug use, humiliation, punishment and guidelines for emotional safety when connecting with the SM scene and are covered.

Part Four: Catapulting towards Transformation
Pushing limits for bottoms, how bottoms out number tops and the reasons why and the spiritual element of SM are covered.

SM 101 - A Realistic Introduction

Jay Wiseman. Greenery Press, 1996

Key Elements: covers everything you need to know about getting started or exploring SM, also there is an entertaining thought related to SM on every page it is a realistic introduction to SM


Contains the purpose of the book, why the book is being written
Sexual extremes (what's going too far)
Who is this book for? (Primarily for the person who has yet contact the SM community, the book in gender neutral and includes basic and advanced SM
What is SM? (Who is defining it)?
Is SM for you? (Those who are self-motivated towards SM and the other motivated people)
Why on earth would anybody want to do this stuff in the first place? (Covers curiosity and limbic system)
People against SM and the psychology of masochism, not harming self and not harming others
A tough decision (writing and publishing about SM)
Coming out (the author's own SM coming out story)
The sociology, politics, and economics of SM
SM versus abuse
Warning signals (how to know when a relationship is abusive)
The cycle of violence (when emotions reach the boiling point and abuse happens)

Basic Basics
Consent (one of the most important issues)
The silent alarm (protecting yourself against that very dangerous one percent of the population)
Safe words (the signal that the play is becoming too intense)
The ethics of safe words (the number one safety measure)
Nonverbal safe words
Checking in (verbal and non-verbal)
Negotiation (failure to negotiate well is the single most common cause of a bad SM session, the 16 basic points that a good basic SM negotiation should cover, includes pre-session negotiations, group negotiations, post session negotiation and feedback, a sample of negotiation
Variability (how different people react)
Learning how it feels (testing it on yourself for yourself)
Setting the scene (time, cleanliness, equipment preparation, privacy)
Other matters (smell, taste, clocks and watches, urinal, the telephone)
Finding a Partner.
Personal ads, Writing and placing an ad, Personal ads in cyberspace, SM clubs, Sign and signals, Men looking for women (personal ads in sex magazines, recognising and dealing with letter freaks personal ads in swingers magazines, personal ads in singles papers, finding a partner on your own, single bars, dating services), Women looking for women, Men looking men , Introducing SM into an existing relationship (includes three role plays to get started)

Bondage 1A (includes diagrams)
Some basic bondage principles, Types of rope (marking the midpoint, lengths, storing rope), Knots (the square knot. The surgeon's knot, the running loop, tying off the end, the lark's head, obi knot, cinch loops), Basic bondage techniques, (Tying the wrists, tying the ankles, tying the knees, tying the elbows), Shoulder pain in a bound submissive, Lark's head bondage, The restraint knot, Breast bondage, Genital bondage, Binding the female genitals, Binding the male genitals, Binding the cock, The hogtie position (the basic hogtie, the military hogtie, hogtie alternative, hogtie variations), Using a bar as bondage implement (how to lash wrists to a bar), Tying a submissive to the bed, Notes and hints on bondage, First bondage, Precautions when playing in isolated areas, Self-bondage, On being untied,

Bondage 1B
Gags (types of gags, panty gags), Blindfolds (when to use a blindfold, notes on using blindfolds, blindfold material), Earplugs, Hoods, Handcuffs (a note about handcuff quality, thumb cuffs, leg irons), Leather cuffs, Suspension, Chains, locks, etc. (chain safety measures, padlocks, how to deal with the different keys needed for each lock, special links, carabiners, double snaps, ribbon, tape, plastic wrap),

Giving and Receiving Erotic Pain
What is pain, Giving pain (the nod, the now), How hard should I hit (one to ten), Receiving pain, Straight time and checking in later,

When to whip, What about whipping her breast, Whipping positions (the standing position, the bent-at-the-waist position, the prone position, beware of 'neck snap', watch for internal injury, take care of your own body too, the pillowcase), Hands-on-flagellation (spanking and a few spanking tips), Paddling (and the slapper), The riding crop (how to use a riding crop), Whips and floggers (single tailed whips, multi-tailed whips, how to make a 'mini-flogger' from two bootlaces, backhand, twirling, sideways figure eight, underhand, from in front, overhand, snapping, holding the tails) Canes (and a few words about the lovely coat hanger), The pounder (a message implement that consist of a small ball mounted on a flexible strip of metal with a handle on the other hand)

Clamps (a lazy dominant's best friend) Putting them on, Taking them off, What to do after the clamp is on, Standing clamps, The bed of nails, Clamping the nipples (applying clamps to nipples, where should you place the nipple clamps), Clamping the genitals (clamping the male genitals, clamping the female genitals), Clamping other parts of the body,

Lubricants, Erotic 'Torture', Using your hands and mouth, Hot and cold play, Candle wax, menthol play, hair blower, ice cubes, Conventional sex toys (vibrator, ben wa balls), Other forms of sensation (abrasion play, semi-piercing,' play piercing', suction cups, electricty play, blade play), Masturbation games (hooker's trick number 1, brush strokes, pin in the skin, tap dancing, climbing the mountain, push here to start, flat top, 'show me how you like it', thumb enchanted evening, a hair-raising trick, fill her up, perineum punch, make a sanke, up and down 1, up and down 2, sexual feeling, do the twist, a moveable fist, open says me, a one a two and a three, trident, give him a wring, close but no cigar, ball pull, tes tickles, pin and win, before and after, milking it for all it's worth, jilting off, a warm wet touch

Humiliation (the most difficult SM related subject to understand and agree upon)

Dominant/Submissive Interactions
On being a dominant, On being a submissive (pushy bottoms, smart assed masochist-SAM, resistance, topping from below), Beginning and ending a session, Beginning a submissive training, The four basic duties of a submissive (to serve your needs, to obey your orders, to accept your domination, to please your desires), The collar (an instrument of ownership and control), Basic position training (keeping things in perspective, commands), Speech training (the submissive should usually speak only when directly spoken to or after being given permission to speak), Slave duties, Punishment,

SM Relationships
24/7 relationships (ethics, can inequality and intimacy co-exist?), Non-traditional partnerships

SM Organisations
(finding your local community, etiquette, when there is no local community, gender balance, social meetings, programs) Parties (deciding to put on a party, who will do what) More formal organisational structures

General Safety Considerations

Musing on safety, SM and risk, What about leaving marks, SM during pregnancy (emotional changes, sexual changes, important cautions), Common causes of SM disasters, First aid and CPR training, First aid supplies, Common SM emergencies (loss of emotional balance, freak outs, falls, fainting, what if the dominant faints, sudden loss of electrical power), Safety checklist
SM and Safer Sex
A Novice Woman's Quick Reference Guide to Erotically Dominating a Submissive Man
SM Sayings
Related Practices
(Age play, anal play, bisexuality, breath control, circumcision, cauretry, enemas, fetishism, Gay and lesbian resources, non-monogamous relationships, piercing, cutting and branding, prostitute support groups, tantric sex, transvestism, and transexuality
Finding Help with Problems
(Where and how to find local resources)
References and Resources

Sadomasochism - Powerful Pleasures

Peggy J. Kleinplatz, PhD. and Charles Moser, PhD, MD, editors. Harrington Park Press, 2006
(co-published simultaneously as Journal of Homosexuality, Volume 50, Numbers 2/3 2006)

Key Elements:
The essays in this book take a hard look at SM from a clinical research perspective and would interest anyone who would like to understand more about the topic from a researcher's point of view.

The State of Our Knowledge on SM. An overview of what is currently known about SM
Sadomasochism and the Social Sciences. A Review of the Sociological and Social Psychological Literature. the characteristics and the identity of the sadomasochistic subculture is briefly summarised
Differences and Similarities Between Gay and Straight Individual Involved in the Sadomasochistic Subculture. Focuses primarily on heterosexual and homosexual males and the sexual themes that were identified in the two groups
Sexual Spanking, the Self and the Construction of Deviance. Using interviews and observations of consensual heterosexual adults who are interested in sexual spanking, their sexual stories and stigma neutralisation techniques are summarised to show how their sexual stories are placed in a wider cultural context that helps those who practice spanking construct meaning, and build identities
24/7 SM Slavery. Using an on line questionnaire are described in this study of people who are living as 24/7 SM slaves
Mainstream Kink: The Politics of BDSM. Representation in U.S. Popular Media
Covers the way in which BDSM is viewed by the mainstream U.S. media, its representation is contrasted with the sexual norms of American culture
Understanding Sadomasochism: An Empirical Examination of Four Perspectives. Taking the findings of four different studies this article looks into what motivates 'Tops' and 'Bottoms' to participate in SM, contrasting the finds of the study and drawing the conclusion that expressions of power is the motivating factor behind the participation in SM and not giving and receiving pain
The Spanner Trials and the Changing Law on Sadomasochism in the U.K. Using the outcome of the Spanner Trials as a starting point to explore the issues of a consent and privacy as they relate to the practice of SM under British and European law. The difference is the perception of SM under the law when applied to gay men and heterosexual couples is also covered.
Negotiating Limits: The Legal Status of SM in the United States. The origin of SM and how it is treated by the American legal system
Discrimination of SM-Identified Individual. A summary of the discrimination, harassment and physical attacks that are suffered by individual identified as practicing SM
Sadomasochistic Interest as an Issue in a Child Custody Proceeding. How a mother's practice of SM affected her child custody battle, includes the cost that leading an alternative lifestyle can have in a child custody battle and what can happen when the DSM-IV is misused
The International Classification of Diseases of Fetishism and Sadomasochism
. How sexual deviation is psychiatrically diagnosed and how it appears in the ICD-10
SM International . SM in Brazil, Germany, Canada, Switzerland, Norway are written about including some contact details for groups in those countries
Psychotherapeutic Issues with 'Kinky' Clients: Clinical Problems, Yours and Theirs. From a BDSM affirmative point of view the author looks at the negative perspective of BDSM that some psychotherapist may have BDSM practices
Investigating Bias in Psychotherapy with BDSM Clients. The concerns of the BDSM practitioners who received psychological care are documented in an on line survey and the findings are evaluated
Learning from Extraordinary Lovers: Lessons from the Edge. What clinicians are able to learn from the individual who have sex lives that vary from normal heterosexual intercourse and the differences between their sex lives and normal heterosexual ones

Sadomasochism - Painful Perversion or Pleasurable Play

Bill Thompson. Cassell Publishers, 1994

Key Elements: Written by a criminologist this book shows the modern history and traces the beginning of modern sadomasochism.

Introduction - Spanner, The Non-Existent Crime
This chapter details the case that put the spotlight on sadomasochism, the law (at the time) and what the author hopes to achieve in the text.

Chapter One - Sadomasochism
In this chapter what is in the name of sadomasochism and the work of Richard von Krafft-Ebing (1840-1902) and the work of Iwan Bloch (1872-1922) and the impact that it had or did not have in defining sadomasochism.

Chapter Two - Psychobabble
This chapter further explores the theories of sadomasochism including Freud and drawing the line between sadomasochism and sadism, the origins of sadomasochism are covered in 'Where do sadomasochists come from'.

Chapter Three - Popular Fallacies and Fears
The chapter looks at modern images of violence that are not perceived as violent, Mary Whitehouse, and the Christian view of sadomasochism, psychotherapy theories, and feminist separatist, and what all these views have in common.

Chapter Four- Sense and Psychologists
The difference of opinions of psychiatrists and psychologists and others regarding sadomasochism.

Chapter Five- Defending the Indefensible
In the chapter the role of sociologist in defining sadomasochism, the first major German study into the matter, a study into the American sadomasochism scene, the link to role plays, learning the ropes, pain and the gay scene, leather bars, slaves and masters (a New York study), becoming a sadomasochist and the sociology of sadomasochism

Chapter Six- The Fantasy Factory
The chapter details intellectualizing sex and why we intellectualize sex, fantasy, common fantasies and their link to sadomasochism recorded in 'A taste for Pain' (1981), and the important role of fantasy in sadomasochism, including a brief history of sadomasochism and how it relates to fantasy in popular culture.

Chapter Seven-Criminalizing Sadomasochism
Much is covered in this chapter, the issue of assault (the three types of assault), the definition of consent, the defence against criminalization, the court of appeal judgment, the law lords judgment, the Attorney-Generals Reference, and how all of the above was linked to gays, Satanism, and sex rings.

Chapter Eight- Mastering Slavery

The chapter focuses on sadomasochism as a question of sport and as a question of sex, bondage, the policing of sadomasochism and the law commission that investigated sadomasochism

On The Safe Edge - A Manual for SM Play

Trevor Jacques with Dr.Dale, Michael Hamilton, and Sniffer. WholeSM Publishing Corporation, 1993

Key Elements:
A complete manual for all things related to SM, it references to a wide range of SM topics.

The books covers the following:

What is SM?
And a few things that it is not, it is not sexual masochism, it is not sexual sadism, and it is not a mental disorder
Coming Out Into SM. Why; the inside drive to do it, How; coming out to others and meeting others, Social- local, national, bars, networking, phone lines, Publications, Computer Bulletin Boards, Professional Dominants, etc.

The Mind
Fantasy and Reality - Imagination and creativity
Fantasy - With whom do we want to play, what forms could play take, where do we like to play, when would we like to play, how do we play, why do we do it
Reality - The main parts of the real world that can play a part in modifying a fantasy, safety respect and consideration for others, you can't always have all you want, fantasy may be more than reality can handle, punishment reality can mean facing truths about oneself
Creativity - Create a scenario and then work on how to enact it
Roles - Dominant and submissive, sadistic and masochistic, aggressive and passive, top and bottom-who is which, acting out a role for a scene, living a role (the degree and extent of role plays), role reversal (playing the other role)
Responsibilities and other duties - consent (understanding the importance of informed consent)
Responsibilities (who for which, negotiation-making sure that anything that may affect the current scene
is well understood by your partner, who is in charge, top and bottom should establish the scene before hand, bottom must signal wishes to go further, tops must recognise problem)
Trust - (an important ingredient in creating a scene that works)
Panic - (hyperventilation, anticipating panic)
Spiritual and Ritual

The Body
Anatomy - (what takes place beneath the skin) contains illustrations of the male and female body-the difference between the sexes, erogenous zone, percussion, bondage, insertional activities, cock and ball play, electrotorture, physiology, endorphins, threshold of pain.
Play (the mechanics of play)-topics related to SM play, cue (aural cue, visual cue, tactile cue, oral cue, nasal cue), stimulation (aural stimulation, visual stimulation, tactile stimulation, oral stimulation, olfactory stimulation) ramping up and down

Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Cleanliness and Disinfection - Condoms, dental dams, latex gloves, cleaning of toys, cleaning of people, cleaning the ass for play
Mind Altering Substances - alcohol, amphetamines, barbiturates, cannabis, cocaine and crack, hallucinogens, options, volatile nitrites, volatile solvents
Emotions and the Psyche
First Aid
Reasons and Uses for Pain
Stop the Scene
Incidents -fainting, diabetes reaction
Accidents - bleeding, dislocated joints, fractures, and concussion, damaged ligaments, burns (first degree, second degree, third degree)
First Aid Kit for the Play Room
Safety Considerations-silent alarm, medical conditions

Auto bondage, collars, genital bondage, handcuffs, shackles and other mental bondage, hoods, gags, blindfolds, gasmasks, leather, Mummification, rope
Insertional Practices-
Fisting, long-term scenes oral sex, percussion play, aerosolization of blood, scat, water sports and raunch, suspension and inversion, miscellaneous considerations
Equipment- toys (blood letting toys, bondage toys), Genital bondage equipment, chastity belts, cockrings and straps, covers, cages and sheaths, head bondage toys, hospital restraints, mental restraints, mummification, rope toys, cock and ball toys, electrical toys, current devices, voltage devices, insertional toys, catheters and sounds, scat and watersport equipment, suspension and inversion toys, bondage suits, inversion boots, mailbags, slings, suspension, harness, temperature toys, branding, cigarettes, cigars, matches, flaming heat, hot wax, ice, tiger balm, ben gay and other skin stimulants, tit toys, vaginal toys, whips, paddles, rods and other percussive toys and safety items for the playroom
Etiquette (codes of behaviour)-
Honesty, scene is failing, bar etiquette, bedroom etiquette, playroom etiquette

Further Reading and Viewing
Appendix A: Safer sex and drug policies
Appendix B: Group SM courtesy
Appendix C: SM questionnaires
Appendix D: The $35 Toybag
Appendix E: Hanky colour codes
Appendix F: Contact and terms and abbreviations

The New Topping Book

Dossie Easton and Janet W. Hardy. Greenery Press, 2003

Key Elements: The entire text takes a proactive positive approach to the exploration of being a 'Top' and developing comfortably in the role of 'Top'. It also contains a resource guide

Chapter One- Hello Again!

Covers the love of Tops, Why the book was written , How the authors view BDSM, (Bondage and sadomasochism), Defining BDSM and how do you know that you are a Top ,

Chapter Two- What Is It About Topping, Anyway?
Details the struggle of power in society, Building your hearth, Asks the question of whether or not all power is the same, 'What's in it for you' (empathy, creativity, bigness, nurturing, bullying, control, competence and self knowledge), 'What about Bottoms', How Tops and Bottoms interrelate, (Their interdependence), 'Whose fantasy' (the role of fantasy), Symbolism and structure' (their role in fantasy),

Chapter Three-What Do Tops Do?
Finding your Top persona' (the various roles that you can play and do you always have to have a role), Where are the boundaries?, The use of safe words?, When you're itching to go further-when you have a clear picture of what turns you on want to go further, If you're doing it, it's real' (the contradiction and paradox in S/M and reflecting on the ways in which symbolic powerlessness can empower and symbolic cruelty can sensitize)

Interlude 1- A sensation scene at a party played by Janet and a female friend'.

Chapter Four- Rights and Responsibilities
(Your rights and responsibilities as a Top)

Chapter Five- 'How Do You Learn to Do This Stuff'

(Giving you permission to be ignorant and learn) , Do it yourself' (basic rules and helpful hints)

Interlude 2- A scene at a party by our friend Bill and a stranger

Chapter Six- 'Soaring Higher'

Getting the technique out of the way, learning and progressing, Staying open (paying attention to what is happening in your own body and heart, paying attention to muscle tension, paying attention to breathing, paying attention to posture and movement), Intuition and where to find it- the ability to now something without knowing it

Chapter Seven- BDSM Ethnics

How to be safe and healthy while at play violating and betraying, Consent, Respecting and blaming, Hearing feedback , Respecting persons

Chapter Eight- 'On Your Mark-Get Set.'

Communication skills for Tops, Getting the information that you need, I messages (the importance of using I statements), Needy Bottoms (ways of handling situations with them), Black holes (unresponsive Bottoms), Activities that require special consent (things that may require special consent), Sex (the kinds of sexual behavior that are o.k.), Marks (temporary marks, bruises, or welts), Pains (an acquired taste), Humiliation (what kind he loves or hates), Phobias and turn-offs (psychological phobias, images, or associations), High-risk play (forms of play that have a much higher risk of injury), Limits of scene space (agreeing the limits and gaining consent to go further), Emotional limits (special consent for anything that may evoke strong emotional conflict), Limits for tops (knowing your own limits), Making room for your own needs (where sex and physical stimulation fit in)

Interlude 3- A role-play scene played by 'Alaska' a novice top friend

Chapter Nine- Go!

What do you do first?, Getting yourself turned on, Impulse topping, Keeping it going, Taking control, Asking for directions, How to be supportive, Checking in, Calibrating your bottom, Bottomless Pitts (how to handle Bottoms who never seem to get enough), Closure, Winding down

Chapter Ten: 'And if It Doesn't Go The Way You Planned'
(How to handle physical mishaps, emergencies, and aftershocks)

Chapter Eleven: 'Toys for Tops'-A Basic Toy Selection
Rope, restraints, blindfolds, collar, clamps, candles, soft flogger, slapper, or jacket bat, sex toys, safer sex, supplies, emergency supplies; More advanced toys, helplessness toys, toys for hitting, toys for poking, toys that heat or cool, toys that zap, toys for turning on and getting off, toys for role playing; Toys for the road, Maintaining toys, Some final thoughts on toys

Interlude 4- A first time topping scene played by a Bottom and her friends

Chapter Twelve-'Finding Others'
Common mistakes, Virtual communities, Munches, Leather bars, Support groups, The kink communities and people of color, O.k. but where are all the bottoms, It pays to advertise, To cruise or not to cruise , Introducing BDSM into existing relationship, Choosing the right Bottom, Responsibilities, Ability to give as well as take, Discretion, Self control, Supportiveness

Chapter Thirteen-'Special Cases'
Novices (BDSM virgins), Professional domination, Public play (playing in public)

Chapter Fourteen-'Full Time D/S' (the 24/7's)

Fluidity (an approach to moving in and out of dominant or submissive mind sets), Activities and behaviors (includes what's in it for the submissive), Contracts and symbols , The duration of the contract, Symbols (collars, rings), Obligations (services provided by the submissive and services provided by the dominant), Ways to communicate (creative ways to accomplish communication), Agreements about sex and play with others (activities that may or may not take place outside the relationship), Disagreements (how will they be handled)

Chapter Fifteen-'Shadow Play: Dark side S/M'
What is it (scenes that delve into deep psychological territory)?, Playing in the shadow, Playing with cultural trauma (what is the attraction from the Bottom if you choose a script, what is the attraction from the Top if you choose to a script), How do you do it (aftercare, public play, healing), Deep emotional safety (setting and keeping to limits), How do you do it (beginning, middle, and ending), What about therapy (does the Top become the therapist in deep psychological play), Shadows and rebirth (finding acceptance for emotions and behaviors that would be unacceptable outside the BDSM scene)

Chapter Sixteen-'S/M Spirituality: From the Top'
Shadow and spirit, S/M ritual as a spiritual path, Edge path (whenever things start to feel risky), Roles in ritual (training yourself and developing your own spiritual practice), Ritual practice (doing ritual successfully), Planning and negotiating , Power and manifestation ,

Chapter Seventeen-'The Light That Shines In The Darkness'
(the darkness of BDSM that leads to light)

The New Bottoming Book

Dossie Easton and Janet W. Hardy. Greenery Press, 2001

Key Elements: The entire text takes a proactive approach to the exploration of being a ‘Bottom' and developing comfortably in the role of ‘Bottom'. It also contains a resource guide.

Chapter One-Introducing Ourselves

-Who we are -The scope of the book -Defining terms -Some shared assumptions -Is it really BDSM (Bondage, Discipline, Domination, & Submission, and Sadism and Masochism) -Kinky ethics -Who are you (So you want to be a bottom?) (So you want to be a top?)

Part One-Skills
Chapter Two- What Kind of Player Are You Anyway? -What do you want from bottoming? -The ‘full power bottom' -Are you really powerless? -Do you really have no choice? -Are you really passive? -Do you really have no limits? -Bridging the gap between fantasy and reality -How real is the role -Thinking with your head and your gonads -Writing new roles

Chapter Three-Staying Safe and Happy

-Know thyself (includes an exercise of self inventory of BDSM activities that you want to try, those you do not want to try and those that you may try) -Negotiating for bigger better scenes (can you negotiate in role) -Keeping it consensual (safewords, check ins, can you change your mind)

Chapter Four-The Bridge to Reality

-Where are you starting from -About the net (including chatrooms, news groups, bulletin boards, private mailing lists) -What's the same and what's different (linking internet fantasy to reality)

Chapter Five-Connecting
-Ads and such -First time meetings -Do it yourself (build your own top) -Join the community and make friends -Choosing tops

Chapter Six- Getting What You Want and Lots of It
-Where is your power? -What's in it for you (goals, rewards and self questioning)

Part Two-Scenes

Chapter Seven-Rewards
-Getting in the flow (learning to be part of the BDSM scene) -Catharsis (letting it all out) -Spiritual states (from practising BDSM) -Getting bigger, getting smaller (a meeting of minds between tops and bottoms) -Submissive states (the two distinct modes of submissive consciousness) -Fighting back-the resistance scene -Forbidden thrills- for people who don't want things nice and clean punishment -Archetypes (the role that are played in SM) -Sensations: the range of sensations experienced during SM

Chapter Eight- Getting Ready

(Grooming yourself, physically and mentally)

Chapter Nine-Ending the Scene and Afterwards
(When the game is over)

Chapter Ten-Playing: Scripts, Scenes and Roles
-Bondage -Bondage safety -Collaborative bondage -Sensory deprivation -Dominance and submission -Giving service (power exchange through providing service) -Discipline, rewards and punishment -Contracts -Pain (the good kind) -Whips -Body modification (piercing, cutting, tattooing, branding, scarification, etc. -Costumery and drag -Worship and fetishes -Authority scenes Regression play for big kids -Gender play -Beasties (animal play) -Inanimate objects -Rough and tough (resistance scene, captivity, kidnap, rape) -Humiliation and verbal abuse -Playing with cultural trauma -Some notes on pubic play

Chapter Eleven-SM and Spirituality
-Sex is spiritual -Sacred space -Kundalini and the chakras -Conscious ritual, here and elsewhere -Communion, transcendence and transformation

Resource Guide

If you wish to purchase any of the books listed on the left, please consider doing so through our Amazon Associates store. Book purchases made through our store give us a percentage of profits and help continue to support this website.

Web Resources

BDSM - Basic wikipedia explanation.

Fetlife  - Free Social Network for the BDSM & fetish community (it's been described as a 'Kinky Facebook')

Keeping it Kinky - Dedicated to the education and implication of safe BDSM

Leather and Roses - General information about kink and BDSM

Dom Sub Friends - General BDSM links.

NLA Columbus - General BDSM guide.

Xeromag - BDSM safety.

Developing Cultural Competence with people in BDSM Relationships - A 2 hour lecture from Dossie Easton a psychotherapist and author of many BDSM texts.

Dom/Sub Explanation - A short video on what people get from being a Dom/me and/or sub.

Guide to Choosing a Kink Aware Therapist - PDF.

Study on Psychotherapist Experience with Patients Who Practice Sadomasochism - PDF.

Lecture on BDSM & Sexual Pleasure by Dominic Davies - Video

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Guidelines for people attending events


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