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“A certain evolution”: a phenomenological study of 24/7 BDSM and negotiating consent.

Cascalheira, C. J., Thomson, A. and Wignall, L., 2021. “A certain evolution”: a phenomenological study of 24/7 BDSM and negotiating consent. Psychology and Sexuality, 13 (3), 628-639.

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DOI: 10.1080/19419899.2021.1901771


BDSM as a full-time lifestyle is stigmatized and underexamined as a phenomenon. Previous studies have investigated 24/7 sadomasochism (SM), 24/7 dominance and submission (D/s), or total power exchange (TPE), yet 24/7 BDSM remains under researched. Using a social constructionist and sexual diversity framework, we used insider knowledge to recruit four participants: a female slave/masochist, a male sadist, a female submissive, and a male dominant/protector. Interpretative phenomenological analysis revealed four superordinate and 10 subordinate themes: routes toward the fundamentals (i.e., sexually explicit resources, kink-related experiences), full-on lifestyle (i.e., self-in-role, flexible rules, shades of play, polyamory), dynamic consent (i.e., honesty, contextual communication), and practicalities (i.e., challenges, benefits). Our findings suggested that 24/7 BDSM is a socially constructed, consensual, full-time adherence to kink-related roles and behaviors untethered to time-limited scenes, woven into other life domains, and operating as an umbrella term to encompass other perpetual power dynamics. The themes contribute to the debate of kink as a sexual identity or serious leisure. We concluded that the centrality of self-in-role coupled with leisure features support 24/7 BDSM as an erotic lifestyle. Implications for sexual diversity, sex education, clinical guidelines, and social justice are discussed.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:BDSM ; Kink ; Qualitative ; IPA ; Sexual identity ; Serious leisure
Group:Faculty of Science & Technology
ID Code:35246
Deposited By: Symplectic RT2
Deposited On:08 Mar 2021 10:01
Last Modified:25 Jan 2023 11:50


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