- Paperback: 160 pages
- Publisher: Harper Perennial (19 Jan. 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0007300468
- ISBN-13: 978-0007300464
- Product Dimensions: 11.4 x 1.3 x 17.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank:
Venus in Furs (Harper Perennial Forbidden Classics) Paperback – 19 Jan 2009
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A classic literary exploration of sexual dominance and submission, this 1870 novel helped introduce the term "masochism" into the language of psychiatry. Author Leopold von Sacher-Masoch drew on his own experiences in the creation of this timeless psychodrama, the chronicle of a nobleman's slavish obsession with a voluptuous, whip-wielding beauty. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
About the Author
Leopold Von Sacher-Masoch was an Austrian writer of fiction and short stories, who inspired the clinical category of ‘masochism’. His complex sexual fantasies, involving the love of pain and submission, ignited a once secretive pursuit into that of a recognised fetish. His masterpiece inspired a famous song of the same name by The Velvet Underground, and continues to be referred to as a defining work within the realm of erotic literature.
Top Customer Reviews
However what really gripped me concerning this novella was the writing style, which I found both honest and lyrical. There is a real grasp of the English language there, turning something of which I have little to no knowledge into something entrancing to read about, simply by use of words, flowing into one another, painting an intricate, excruciatingly detailed picture.
Overall I'd say this is far more satisfying a read than Chatterley, and well worth your time, whether interested in the world of Sadomasochism or not. For the prose alone I can recommend. Sacher-Masoch could have taught E.L James a lesson or two in the art of ink and pen, that's for sure.
"Venus in Furs" is about a man who is obsessed with having his new mistress treat him like a slave. In particular, he wants her to become his ideal "venus in furs" and begs her to don furs and wield a whip against him. His desire to be treated as such is tested when she convinces him to sign an agreement to be her slave. The story is well-written, and one becomes drawn into the misery experienced by the man as his mistress becomes progressively more cruel.
The letters between Sacher- Masoch and Mataja show Sacher-Masoch's inability at times to separate his fiction from his real life. Sacher-Masoch speaks of his married life and encourages Mataja in her writing, but his
professional encouragement is shot through with requests to meet Mataja so that he can be whipped by her while she is wearing fur.
Although there are certainly more graphically erotic examples present in current fiction, this book is a must read for those wanting to know why Sacher-Masoch's writings inspired Krafft-Ebing to create the term "masochism."
"Love knows no virtue, no profit; it loves and forgives and suffers everything, because it must. It is not our judgment that leads us; it is neither the advantages nor the faults which we discover that make us abandon ourselves or that repel us.
It is a sweet, soft, enigmatic power that drives us on. We cease to think, to feel, to will; we let ourselves be carried away by it, and ask not whither."
Utterly beautifully put. The main character Severin (heavily influenced from the authors own life) can become annoying with his devotion at time, but I look upon him with the eyes of a Mistress and not as someone that feels his plight. I also recommend listening to "Venus in Furs" by The Velvet Underground, also Dave Navarro does a great cover version.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I'm halfway through and it is a very different book from the norm so far. Almost all dialogue, it is a fascinating and riveting read. Read morePublished 17 months ago by ron the dog
I love the flowery language and drama of this book. Enjoyable and still classic
I recommend this book for 50 shades of grey fans with a classical bent