Agalmatophilia

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Agalmatophilia (from the Greek agalma 'statue', and -philia φιλία = love) is a paraphilia involving sexual attraction to a statue, doll, mannequin or other similar figurative object. The attraction may include a desire for actual sexual contact with the object, a fantasy of having sexual (or non-sexual) encounters with an animate or inanimate instance of the preferred object, the act of watching encounters between such objects, or sexual pleasure gained from thoughts of being transformed or transforming another into the preferred object. Agalmatophilia may also encompass Pygmalionism (from the myth of Pygmalion), which denotes love for an object of one's own creation.[1]

Clinical study[edit]

Agalmatophilia became a subject of clinical study with the publication of Richard von Krafft-Ebing's Psychopathia Sexualis. Krafft-Ebing recorded an 1877 case of a gardener falling in love with a statue of the Venus de Milo and being discovered attempting coitus with it.[2]

Fantasy, transformation, role-play[edit]

An important fantasy for some individuals is being transformed into the preferred object (such as a statue) and experiencing an associated state of immobility or paralysis. Such fantasies may be extended to role-playing, and the self-coined term used by fetishists who enjoy being transformed into what appears to be a "rubber doll" or "latex doll".

In the arts[edit]

Sexualised life-size dolls have extensively featured in the work of famous art photographers such as Hans Bellmer, Bernard Faucon, Helmut Newton, Morton Bartlett, Katan Amano, Kishin Shinoyama, and Ryoichi Yoshida.

Agalmatophilia features prominently in Luis Buñuel's L'Âge d'Or (the female protagonist sucks a statue's toe) and in Tarsem Singh's 2000 thriller movie The Cell. The movie centers on a serial killer named Carl Stargher (played by Vincent D'Onofrio) who drowns his victims (all young women) and then bleaches their bodies so they resemble dolls. He then masturbates while hanging himself above them. Later on in the movie there is a scene taking place inside his mind in which a psychiatrist finds a collection of grotesque, doll-like, corpse-like women inside display cases depicting scenes, while attached to crude machinery that jerks them about in sadomasochistic sexual poses; this is how the killer perceives his victims.

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Ellis, 1927.
  2. ^ Kick, 2005.

References[edit]

  • Alexandre, Elisabeth. (2005). Des poupées et des hommes. Enquête sur l'amour artificiel (Dolls and Men - Investigation into Artificial Love). La Musardine. ISBN 2-84271-252-8.
  • Dorfman, Elena. (2005). Still Lovers. Channel Photographics. ISBN 0-9766708-1-X.
  • Ellis, Havelock. (1927). Studies in the Psychology of Sex. "Volume V: Erotic Symbolism; The Mechanism of Detumescence; The Psychic State in Pregnancy". ISBN 1-4375-0927-4.
  • Gross, Kenneth. (1992). The Dream of the Moving Statue. Cornell University Press. ISBN 0-8014-2702-9.
  • Kick, Russ. (2005). Everything You Know about Sex Is Wrong. The Disinformation Company. ISBN 1-932857-17-6.
  • Krafft-Ebing, Richard von. (1906). Psychopathia Sexualis, With Special Reference to the Antipathic Sexual Instinct: A Medico-Forensic Study. ISBN 1-55970-425-X.
  • Plumb, Suzie. (Editor). (2005). Guys and Dolls: Art, Science, Fashion and relationships. Royal Pavilion, Art Gallery & Museums. ISBN 0-948723-57-2.
  • Scobie A, Taylor J. (January 1975). Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences: Vol 11, Issue 1: "Agalmatophilia, the statue syndrome." Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
  • Simmons, Laurence. (2006). Freud's Italian Journey. Rodopi. ISBN 90-420-2011-3.
  • Wenk, Silke. (1989). "Pygmalions Wahlverwandtschaften. Die Rekonstruktion des Schöpfermythos im nachfaschistischen Deutschland" IN: Konstruktionen von Männlichkeit und Weiblichkeit in Kunst und Kunstgeschichte. Berlin.
  • White M J. (November 1978). Journal of Sex Research; Vol. 14 Issue 4: "The Statue Syndrome: Perversion? Fantasy? Anecdote?".

External links[edit]