Bondage, Dominance/Submission, Sadism/Masochism (BDSM)

The acronym BDSM stands for bondage, dominance/submission (DS), and sadism/masochism (SM). It is an umbrella term for a variety of practices in a sexual context that involve intense stimulations of body and mind. It is a community term that has replaced the older term sadomasochism (SM) for at least two reasons.

First, BDSM introduces a broader range of practices than the emphasis on sensation or pain in SM alone. The boundaries of the term BDSM remain fuzzy, though, as it remains contested whether fetishes (such as leather, rubber, worshipping of certain body parts) and other related practices (e.g., nonmainstream practices such as fisting and urination) that are widespread in BDSM communities are considered BDSM proper or not (see the entry on Kink).

Second, the term sadomasochism is ...

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