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Bound to be Free: The SM Experience 1st Edition

4.2 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 000-0826410472
ISBN-10: 0826410472
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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Of the vast array of human sexual behaviors and practices, sadomasochism (SM) is probably the least understood and, thus, the most feared among the general public. Moser and Madeson here provide perhaps the first intelligent, fully informed, fact-based discussion of what SM is, what it means to its practitioners, how it is practiced, and the structure of its subculture in contemporary American society. Moser, a practicing psychotherapist and counselor, provides the clinical approach taken in the first few chapters. Madeson, a 15-year participant in the SM subculture, provides the practical viewpoint taken in the remaining three quarters of the book. Together, they provide a perspective that is uniquely accurate, sensitive, and fair in its depiction and interpretation of erotic sadomasochism. Highly recommended for academic and special human sexuality collections; small and medium-size public libraries should consider if they have strong popular sex collections.?David R. Johnson, Fayetteville P.L., Ark.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"Perhaps the first intelligent, fully informed, fact-based discussion of what SM is ... a perspective that is uniquely accurate, sensitive, and fair in its description and interpretation of erotic sadomasochism."
- Library Journal

Of the vast array of human sexual behaviors and practices, sadomasochism (SM) is probably the least understood and, thus, the most feared among the general public. Moser and Madeson here provide perhaps the first intelligent, fully informed, fact-based discussion of what SM is, what it means to its practitioners, how it is practiced, and the structure of its subculture in contemporary American society. Moser, a practicing psychotherapist and counselor, provides the clinical approach taken in the first few chapters. Madeson, a 15-year participant in the SM subculture, provides the practical viewpoint taken in the remaining three quarters of the book. Together, they provide a perspective that is uniquely accurate, sensitive, and fair in its depiction and interpretation of erotic sadomasochism. Highly recommended for academic and special human sexuality collections; small and medium-size public libraries should consider if they have strong popular sex collections (David R. Johnson Library Journal)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 216 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic; 1 edition (September 1, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0826410472
  • ISBN-13: 978-0826410474
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,364,407 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on March 6, 2000
Format: Paperback
"Bound To Be Free" is an interesting mix of the professional and the personal. The first three chapters, written by noted sexologist Charles Moser, M.D., PhD, are a good overview of what is known in a scientific way about SM. (Actually, not much although the observation that about one person in ten is interested in SM is interesting.) The rest of the book is written by SM practitioner JJ Madeson.
The book contains good information about the multi-faceted nature and definition of SM, and a good essay on the nature of consent. There are also numerous and somewhat lengthy descriptions of SM play. In fact, there are so many that the book reads like soft porn in some areas. The book also contains numerous, lengthy excerpts from other SM books and even anti-SM books such as "Against Sadomasochism". In fact so much of the book is made up of excerpts from other books that this book almost started reading like a term paper. The book also contains commentary from various members of the SM Community.
The book covers that basics of SM play and techniques, including such matters as safe words, limits, and confidentiality, but reads somewhat flat in areas. However it does contain a long and good essay on why someone would enjoy pain.
The book also contains information on how to contact the SM community such as the Eulenspeigel society in New York City and the Janus Society in San Francisco. It could have used more internet resources though.
Other good books in this field include "Consensual Sadomasochism", "The Sexually Dominant Woman", "Screw the Roses Send Me The Thorns" and "SM 101".
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Format: Paperback
I first learned of this book when I was at a Barnes and Noble Booksellers browsing through the small collection of sex books and trying to hide myself inconspicuously from the passers-by. When I found this book, I sat down, started reading at a random page and didn't stop for another three chapters.
That's how well this book is written.
That said, the most important thing you need to know is that the book is co-authored by a sexologist (technically a psychologist, actually), and a long-time SM practitioner. The first part of the book is filled with history, reports of research studies, and other relatively dry medical information that some readers may find boring but which give the rest of the book deserved license to speak with its voice of wisdom and experience. (Then again, if you're reading this book in the first place, you probably want to learn all you can about S&M anyway. I did, so the academia lesson was much appreciated.) This first part was written mainly by the Docto. His efforts to be objective and accurate come through in his writing very successfully.
After this, the book is turned over to JJ Madeson, who spends some time speaking about herself before she ventures into discussions of others. This not only gives you an immediate sense of being able to relate to the writing but also gives you an incredibly personal sense of who S&M players really are.
The book is general, covering the more basic parts of the "who," "what," "where," "why" and "when" questions than any specific information on the "how." Throughout each section, interspersed within the text, are short quotes, stories, and experiences related by fellow S&M practitioners -- both those in the public scene and those who play with a boyfriend, a wife, or a play partner, etc, in private.
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Format: Paperback
Frankly, this is a book that every serious student of human nature needs to read. Most of what is "out there" is either from academicians who make the topic so dry that it is no fun to read, or from practitioners who are so involved that they either lose or scare us. Moser, the scientist and Madison, the practitioner, have combined to produce a book that is both fun and educational. The book lets us know just what it is that S&Mers do, why they do it and how they do it. Safety issues are emphasized. Finally we learn how S&M can be a very loving, alternative, life-style.
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Format: Paperback
This book is a both a clinical investigation of BDSM and an insider's view of how BDSM functions and serves those who engage in the practices. There are not "how-to" sections nor fiction in this book but observations of reallife BDSM that are attempted to be turned into "rules" about the subculture. Be careful, you are as likely to agree as to disagree with some of the conclusions reached but it will get you thinking. It is not, however, the best book to use if you are trying to introduce your partner to the scene -- it best serves those interested in a more clinical study of BDSM.
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Format: Paperback
Bound to be Free is an excellent source of information for those who are curious about the BDSM lifestyle. Written by Charles Moser, Ph.D, M.D. and JJ Madesen, a BDSM practitioner, this book combines clinical insights with practical experiences. A number of sources are quoted from, including "Urban Aboriginals," "Different Loving," "Screw The Roses, Send Me the Thorns," and even, in one instance, "Dear Abby." Demystifying and understanding, this is the book I'd buy my Mom if she found out about my lifestyle.
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