Sadism

   A sadist has come to be thought of as one who delights in cruelty. In psychology, however, sadism is the association of sexual gratification with the infliction of pain on others. The word was derived from the name of Count Donatien Alphonse Frangois de Sade (1740-1814). The Count de Sade (he preferred to be called Marquis) came from a prominent French family and received, beginning at age fourteen,,the expected military training for a person of such standing. The marquis, however, found that such service interfered with his life of pleasure, and so he gave up the military.
   His pleasure, which consisted in deviant sexual satisfaction, was expensive, and so a marriage was arranged with Renee Pelagie de Montreuil, the daughter of a wealthy man. Despite the marriage, de Sade continued to have affairs with other women, mostly prostitutes, enjoying a form of sexual perversion that he pursued for the rest of his life. His favorite romantic pastime, his great, uncontrollable urge, was to abuse sexually and even torture his partner. For such activity, de Sade was arrested and imprisoned, but once released, he would continue to seek gratification of his deep-seated desires, and would be arrested again. He was even sentenced to death in 1772 in absentia for committing "an unnatural offense." (The Marquis had fled the country to avoid further imprisonment.) After three years, he decided to return, and he was arrested and imprisoned for the next thirteen years. He escaped the guillotine during the Revolution, While confined in the Bastille, de Sade decided to write, in novel form, about his sexual compulsion to torture his partner (Justine, Philosophic dans le boudoir, les crimes de I' amour, and others). He completed his writing, but with a change of scenery — in the Charenton Lunatic Asylum. De Sade was eventually discharged, but was rearrested seven years later as an incorrigible, and spent the rest of his days at Charenton, from 1803 to 1814.
   The marquis realized that he was subject to mental aberrations and contended that no treatment could cure him. He wrote: "As for my vices — unrestrainable rages — an extreme tendency in everything to lose control of myself, a disordered imagination in sexual matters such as had never been known in this world, an atheist to the point of fanaticism — in two words, there I am, and so once again kill me or take me like that, because I shall never change." His last written words were, "The ground over my grave should be sprinkled with acorns so that all traces of my grave shall disappear so that, as I hope, this reminder of my existence may be wiped from the memory of mankind." So long as the name-word sadism exists, however, de Sade's memory will be kept alive.

Dictionary of eponyms. . 2013.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • sadism — SADÍSM s.n. Tendinţă anormală spre cruzime, plăcere bolnăvicioasă de a vedea pe cineva suferind sau de a pricinui suferinţe: cruzime extremă. ♦ spec. Perversiune sexuală manifestată prin plăcerea de a provoca partenerului suferinţe fizice. – Din… …   Dicționar Român

  • Sadism — is the derivation of pleasure as a result of inflicting pain, or watching pain inflicted, on others. Aspects of it include:*Sadomasochism *Sadism and masochism as medical terms *Sadistic personality disorder;See also *Marquis de Sade, an… …   Wikipedia

  • sadism — (n.) love of cruelty, 1888, from Fr. sadisme, from Count Donatien A.F. de Sade (1740 1815). Not a marquis, though usually now called one, he was notorious for cruel sexual practices he described in his novels …   Etymology dictionary

  • sadism — ► NOUN ▪ the tendency to derive sexual gratification or general pleasure from inflicting pain, suffering, or humiliation on others. DERIVATIVES sadist noun sadistic adjective sadistically adverb. ORIGIN French sadisme, from the name of the French …   English terms dictionary

  • sadism — [sā′diz΄əm, sad′iz΄əm] n. [Fr, after SADE Marquis de] 1. the getting of sexual pleasure from dominating, mistreating, or hurting one s partner 2. the getting of pleasure from inflicting physical or psychological pain on another or others: Cf.… …   English World dictionary

  • Sadism —    Just as with its mirror image masochism, sadism has come to have three meanings: (1) the voluntary infliction of suffering; (2) in psychoanalysis, a compulsive kind of personality characterized by regression to the anal sadistic phase of… …   Historical dictionary of Psychiatry

  • sadism — sadist, n., adj. sadistic /seuh dis tik, say , sa /, adj. sadistically, adv. /say diz euhm, sad iz /, n. 1. Psychiatry. sexual gratification gained through causing pain or degradation to others. Cf. masochism. 2. any enjoyment in being cruel …   Universalium

  • sadism — n. to display sadism * * * to display sadism …   Combinatory dictionary

  • sadism — [[t]se͟ɪdɪzəm[/t]] N UNCOUNT Sadism is a type of behaviour in which a person obtains pleasure from hurting other people and making them suffer physically or mentally. Psychoanalysts tend to regard both sadism and masochism as arising from… …   English dictionary

  • sadism — A form of perversion, often sexual in nature, in which a person finds pleasure in inflicting abuse and maltreatment. Cf.:masochism. [Marquis de Sade, 1740–1814, confessedly addicted to the practice] * * * sa·dism sā .diz əm, sad .iz n a sexual… …   Medical dictionary


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