In general, the depiction of sadism and masochism in fiction tends to be portrayed from the viewpoint of masochistic fantasy.

Table of contents
1 Novels
2 Mainstream films
3 External links


The Marquis de Sade's works, including Justine and Juliette are written from an extreme sadistic viewpoint.

Leopold von Sacher-Masoch's novel Venus in Furs (1870) is essentially one long masochistic fantasy, where the male principal character encourages his mistress to mistreat him.

The Story of O (1954) is another classic masochistic novel, this time written by a woman, Pauline Réage. In this novel, the female principal character is kept in a chateau and mistreated by a group of men.

L'Image (1956) is another classic sadomasochistic novel, written by another French woman, Catherine Robbe-Grillet, under the pseudonym Jean de Berg. It was made into a 1975 film, The Image, also known as The Punishment of Anne.

The writer Anne Rice has produced a number of examples of well-written sado-masochistic fiction, including Exit to Eden and Belinda as well as The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty and its sequels, Beauty's Punishment and Beauty's Release.

As of 2003, sado-masochistic themes are now common in mainstream erotic fiction, to the point of cliché.

More literary sado-masochistic fiction includes the works of authors such as

  • Laura Antoniou, including the Marketplace series of novels
  • Pat Califia's works including Macho Sluts

The novel Kushiel's Dart by Jacqueline Carey and its sequels belong both in the fantasy fiction and BDSM fiction genres.

To do: gay and lesbian sadomasochistic fiction

Specialist publishers of S/M fiction:

Mainstream films

Consensual BDSM is not generally depicted accurately or sympathetically in mainstream films, to say the least. However, film-makers often find some way to incorporate BDSM imagery into many films. The following films feature BDSM as a major plot point, not just as an exploitative add-on.

Sado-masochism is featured as a central plot element in the following mainstream drams films:

Art movies:

  • Exit to Eden
  • Preaching to the Perverted
  • Personal Services (starring Julie Walters)

  • Body of Evidence

External links