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Weille, K.H. (2002). The Psychodynamics of Consensual Sadomasochistic and Dominant-Submissive Sexual Games. Studies in Gender and Sexuality, 3(2):131-160.

(2002). Studies in Gender and Sexuality, 3(2):131-160

The Psychodynamics of Consensual Sadomasochistic and Dominant-Submissive Sexual Games

Katharine-Lee H. Weille, ACSW

The author examines a case from a qualitative research study exploring repetition-compulsion and repair in consensual sadomasochistic/dominant-submissive (SMDS) sexual play. The study attempts to bridge the epistemological divide between clinically derived psychoanalytic theories about perversion and nonclinical research on consensual SMDS subcultures. The case addresses research questions about the presence of, and possibilities for, working through childhood developmental conflicts in consensual SMDS (as theoretically differentiated from its nonconsensual counterparts).

This study, along with those theories that uproot classical notions of sexuality and the “oedipal divide,” lends support for the view that the diversity of lived and practiced sexualities defies facile categorization and that, if categorization is to be attempted, it must take into account individual meanings and relational/larger social contexts.

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