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It is with the physician who created psychoanalysis Sigmund Freud, from the development of a general psychopathological theory, however, that the delimitation of what would be normal sexuality occurs. From it, it was also possible to classify the perversions in terms of their varieties and origins. As the researcher highlights, Freud considered the sexual object – the partner of the opposite sex – and the objective of sexual intercourse – the introduction of the erect penis into the vagina – as ejaculation. Practices that varied the object and/or objective would become perversions. From this perspective, the practices encompassed by BDSM, then, would be seen as perversion, given that they are fixated on provisional sexual goals.

If during the 19th century the main scientific formulations on sexuality occurred in Europe, in the second chapter, “Scientific discourse on sex in the 20th century”, Zilli focuses on the post-war period, when studies on the subject with the greatest impact occurring in the USA. In this period, issues related to sexualities that deviate from the heterosexual reproductive norm lose the spotlight, and the greatest concern is concentrated on the dysfunctions of everyday sexuality, opposed to the theme of their disorder or deviation.

As the studies of Foucault, during the 19th-century scientific interest, of a medical-psychiatric nature, deprived marital sex by paying attention to marginalized sexualities. For the next century, however, the main feature of the studies is that they deal with relatively conventional sexual activity. The exotic leaves the scene and, with it, clinical studies also disappear. The specific character becomes the white and heterosexual man, investigated through questionnaires, interviews, and statistical representations.

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