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Psychopathia Sexualis

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Psychopathia Sexualis (Psychopathy of Sex), by Richard Freiherr von Krafft-Ebing, is one of the first texts about sexual pathology. First published in 1886 in German with the subtitle "with Special Reference to the Antipathic Sexual Instinct: A Medico-Forensic Study", the book details a wide range of paraphilias, with a special emphasis on male homosexuality (the "antipathic instinct" of the subtitle). Krafft-Ebing also coined the terms sadism and masochism in the book. The Psychopathia Sexualis is notable for being one of the earliest works on homosexuality. Krafft-Ebing combined Karl Ulrichs' Urning theory with Bénédict Morel's theory of disease and concluded that most homosexuals have a mental illness caused by degenerate heredity. The book was controversial at the time, arousing the anger of the church in particular. The book had a considerable influence on continental European forensic psychiatry in the first part of the 20th century. It is regarded as the bible of psychopathology.In 2006, an independent film based on the book was made in Atlanta.
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original title: Psychopathia sexualis
date of publication: 1886
genre: essay

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