Sadism and Masochism: The Psychology of Hatred and Cruelty - Vol. 2

By Wilhelm Stekel; Louise Brink | Go to book overview

XIII
CASE HISTORIES

All of man's power is won through conflict with himself and victory over himself.

FICHTE.

One fact appears again and again in all the rich material which I have been able thus far to bring forward; all paraphilias originate in a suppression of our natural dispositions. From the powerful restraint of the homosexual component arise many deviations and aberrations of the sexual life. The infantile forms the necessary accompaniment of this. I have indeed made the effort to prove how easily as a result of a too strong fixation upon the family a reversal of all sexual values may take place. The natural becomes sinful, kindness turns to hatred, the highest falls to the depths, and the lowest is exalted. Our need for love and hate vents itself upon our children. Thus we move in a closed circle and every new generation receives from the old the tendency to parapathy. Sexuality enters into the strangest combinations; it seeks confederates even in the enemy's camp.

I have hitherto spoken of masochistic men. Now I will describe the counterpart to the masochistic man -- the sadistic woman.

Case Number 27. Mrs. N. L., a beautiful slender woman, twenty-eight years of age, with sharply chiseled features, put herself into my care because of a difficulty which had brought her into the severest conflicts. She is the wife of a high aristocrat and lives a great part of the year upon an estate in the neighborhood of a small town. There she leads a blameless life at the side of her husband, and no one who visits her or knows her at home would suspect to what fearful passions she has yielded. She can stand it at home and with her husband, who idolizes her and grants her every wish, six months at the most, then she has to go

-60-

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