The 120 Days of Sodom
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The 120 Days of Sodom

3.17 of 5 stars 3.17  ·  rating details  ·  3,504 ratings  ·  263 reviews
The 120 Days of Sodom by Marquis de Sade relates the story of four wealthy men who enslave 24 mostly teenaged victims and sexually torture them while listening to stories told by old prostitutes. The book was written while Sade was imprisoned in the Bastille and the manuscript was lost during the storming of the Bastille. Sade wrote that he "wept tears of blood" over the m...more
Paperback, 376 pages
Published March 26th 2009 by Wilder Publications (first published 1785)
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The Most Disturbing Book Ever Written
49th out of 1,329 books — 5,032 voters
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1st out of 31 books — 39 voters


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Paquita Maria Sanchez
Apr 12, 2013 Paquita Maria Sanchez rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Your Boss's Kid
Recommended to Paquita Maria by: AMAZON DOT COM!
Shelves: literature

You can buy this 2009 dramedy used from THE AMAZON for as low as $1.65! You may be saying "What a deal! But what is it all about?" Well, I'll tell you! LOL!

This is the story of a boy who works for a successful greeting card company. One day, his boss hires a new assistant named Sodom who, in typical MPDG fashion, has decided that she doesn't believe in love anymore, and that Frank Zappa's classic song Any Way the Wind Blows is her life philosophy, because she likes subversive Psychedelic Rock an...more
Katie
I have to say that when I say this book was an amazing read, I am attempting to indicate that I was amazed in the real sense of the word - I was astounded by the gravity of the text I was engulfed in; darkly enthralled by the sheer disgust I felt. I have never in my life been more horrified and strangely captivated by a book and although it was not a pleasure read I feel it was an important book to explore, although not one I would rush to read again.
David Acevedo
One of the things that I like most about good literature is its ability to break the confines of conventionalism. Literature, in that sense, is tantamount to being a libertine.

This novel takes the reader to the darkest of the darkest corners of possible, degrading, violent, scatological behaviour. And yet, the fact that it creates a certain fascination that will not allow the reader to halt his or her reading the text, is an achievement in itself.

The 120 Days of Sodom is a voyage of cruelty, t...more
Ian
Zelmire is an exceptionally beautiful name. It’s a shame I’d never be able to bestow it on my daughter for fear of her asking someday where I got the idea...
Anthony Gramuglia
I am not a prude. I am not the type of person who will hesitate from delving into works others might find dark. One of my favorite novels is the Exorcist, commonly regarded as one of the most terrifying books ever written. I have pictures on the push-pin board in front of me while I write this containing images from Silent Hill, Audition, and other really gruesome stuff...of course, next to that I have pictures from It's a Wonderful Life and Aladdin, but that's not the point! Point is, I have no...more
Neil
I must confess, even as a very avid consumer of literature, I have never before been compelled to actually write a book review – this one did.
This book explores the absolute depths of human corruption, and is the most depraved piece of text I have ever read. Unlike many of the reviewers here, I endured the whole, and reached the end – day 120.

This sordid 450 page tome is divided across four stages or ‘passions’ equating to the level of depravity the libertines are allowed to explore: one, simpl...more
Sofia Rodriguez
Aug 03, 2010 Sofia Rodriguez is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
I honestly don't know if I can finish this book. I was recommended this book after reading "American Psycho". I was looking for something that would feed my craving for a gore fest thriller. I don't know what this is. The first couple of pages left me questioning my sanity as to if I should finish it (a question that I thought would be a clear NO for someone who was mentally healthy). But I continued. I bought this book about a year ago and am still grappling with how gross and utterly dehumaniz...more
Jilleesa
Okay. Good lord. Where the hell do I start.

I hesitated before reading this book because I despise the concept of Libertinism and saw myself throwing my iphone across the room. I do like Sade's views on homosexuality and women's sexual freedom. But the rest of his work is just a clusterfuck of coprophagia, pedophilia, homocide, incest, sodomy, torture, sacriligion, disembowling, rape, orgies, spilled seed and horribleness.

With that being said, I read both 120 Days of Sodom and La Philosophie dans...more
Joe
This book taught me that I am still capable of being offended.

120 days of Sodom is the ultimate "boot-camp for the psyche" experience. Rating this monstrosity was extremely difficult for me because, although it was the most atrocious thing I've ever read in my life, it affected me significantly. It did not affect me in a satisfactory way, rather it affected me in the sense that I need to scrape my brain to rid myself of some of the imagery and ideas painted in this sacrilege. Ultimately, I decid...more
Caleb
this book is fucked up. it is profluent the way true crime is profluent. I would liken it to Butters' (South Park character Butters T. Stoch) "The Adventures of Scrotie McBoogerballs." Only it was written 240 years ago.

The only way to really accept this narrative is to think of the main characters, the 4 Lords of Sodom, as cartoon characters. Their primary attributes and motivations and countenances are very cartoonish. The most interesting parts in here were Dulcet's anecdotes.

When people rea...more
Brittni
A word to those who put this on their to-read list: I'm fairly certain this version of the book is the watered down version. If you want to read the original, there's an e-book version floating around online. That's what I read.

Of course I didn't like it. This was the most disgusting book I've ever read, and I doubt there is any as vile out there in the world. For grammar and wording it would receive 5 stars; de Sade is certainly intelligent...the more to fear him.

The book is about four disgusti...more
Ashlee
Aug 07, 2012 Ashlee rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Anyone and everyone who isn't easily shocked (and a good deal of those who are).
I was pleasantly surprised.

For one, I wasn't nearly as disturbed and disgusted as I was expecting to be (although, to be fair, I had heard many things about how horrid it was. How anyone can be shocked when there's such a to-do about something, I don't know.)

For two, it is by far the most interesting book I have ever read. Everything about it was interesting: the narrator, the kinks and fetishes, the discussions that the characters had, the word choice, the fact that it's a rough draft (and even...more
Yomna hosny
Okay so I labored through the first 100 pages of this book and other than "eww" and "yawn" I don't understand how this is considered "literature" ?? It's not even that well written.

It takes a while to get used to the "jargon" (maybe it was just the translation?) and then you have to filter through all the inconsequential annoying details. Seriously, people have been describing their food since waaaay before instagram came around.

This probably makes me a horrible person but honestly.. all I coul...more
Kaitlin
Actually one of the most boring books I've ever read. Well, mostly read. I skimmed some of it. It was that bad. I can't fathom how a book so full of depictions of grotesque and degrading sexual abuse managed to be so dull. After the pushing through the initial revulsion of the premise (it IS repulsive), I found the rest repetitive and unimaginative. The assault scene in Blindness by Saramago, in a few pages and with a fraction of the violence, made me want to vomit. But this?

If you want to be p...more
Svenja
Repugnant. Disgusting. Shocking. Extreme. No-one can mix eroticism and horror like Sade, and here he is at his best. Definitely not for the faint of heart. So appalling you can't put it down.
Michelle
I found this to be an incredibly tedious read, for many reasons. First, really flat, static characters made it impossible for me to care about the tortures inflicted upon them. With 46 (I believe) prisoners, it was not easy to distinguish one from the other. The second reason is that, in the first section, each day detailed has pretty much the same structure. They make their rounds, then have coffee, followed by naps...(all of this interspersed with "frigging"). And the highlight of the day, als...more
Lisa
**Spoilers ahead**

I know, how could this book have spoilers? Well I'm listing most of what the books covers in case anyone is dying of curiosity to read it, and upon getting the gist will maybe decide it's not worth the time.

The book covers incest, pedophilia, shit (more than anything else, shit), vomit, piss, sodomy, rape, gang rape, whipping, bondage, forced orgasms, humiliation, prostitution, kidnapping, burning, dressing up like animals, bone breaking, bestiality, drugging/poisoning, sexual...more
Joe Thompson
It’s very hard to know where to start. Obviously this is not a book for the feint-hearted, and I would find it hard to recommend to anyone. However, there are important aspects to it, even if they do get somewhat lost in the increasingly repetitive violence and general unpleasantness.

There has been some really vitriolic criticism of this book, and I can understand why. But the novel is deeply allegorical, and it is important to see this book not just as a fictional story but as a social critique...more
Louize
On my first attempt to join our GR monthly group discussion, I read this book. Truth be told, I did not finish reading this. I went through half of it, or so, then gave up. That’s okay, go ahead, and call me a prude; but I cannot force myself to go on. This book is perverted to a ridiculous point I felt like I am being polluted from the inside; a moral vacuum of some sort. There are things that may stay with me for a long while, though.

It begins with 4 high-classed libertine males who are seekin...more
Ritz
Las ciento veinte jornadas de Sodoma o La escuela del libertinaje según mi apreciación no es más que un borrador de Justine o los infortunios de la virtud, publicada en 1791.

Es un libro por completo desagradable, no sólo por su contenido perverso, explícito, soez, escatológico, criminal y hasta asesino; sino por su escasa narrativa.

Muestra una absurda obsesión por los números que me refiere a las manías esquizofrénicas, digamos que en esta ocación hay más del loco que de cualquier otra cosa de...more
Šarlo
Aug 27, 2011 Šarlo rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: those in need of humanization
Sade's life-work is a systematic destruction of church-imposed values, symbol against symbol. His work holds no pretense / birthright to a sacred value (despite being historically and culturally invaluable), determined to act itself out objectively, purely, mathematically, like a law of nature, i.e. an instinctive, yet intelligent, utterly human revolt against opressive control. From one angle (that we would probably call terroristic by modern standards), it is the sort of self-negating material...more
Ronel
I thought long and hard what to say about this book. Firstly I have to start off with a few comments.

1. No, I did not finish the book.
2. No, I do not advocate sensorship
3. Yes, some books should come with warning labels.

Usually I will not comment about a book without finishing it. But I simply could not finish this one. The graphic disgusting images of violence and sadism will forever linger in my thoughts.

I always, mistakenly, thought that the reason why his books were banned was because of me...more
Emily May
Well, what's to like? The part where a grown man (view spoiler)
Andrew
Jun 02, 2011 Andrew rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommended to Andrew by: A dear friend
This is definitely a book about depravity. It is also definitely literature and a historical document. This is a book that illustrates an extreme, but nevertheless realistic view that arises in a world not governed by law and where power is arrived at by birth or nepotism. In an age that is increasingly fascinated by aristocracy with the marriages in the English and Danish Royal families, for example, and the rise and potential return of the Romanov family in the name of nationalism, books like...more
Joana
Does it really matter what do I think after reading this book?
I dont think so. Well I must say that I saw the movie first, with my 12 years old, I hide myself and stole the dvd from my uncle and I saw it.It said on the cover "120 journees du sodome by Pier Pasolini". So far this is the most normal thing in the world... if the dvd that I stole was not the most frightning/twisted experience that I could ever had to explore sexuality, perversion, desire and madness,etc, on my youth/life.
I saw the a...more
André Nogueira
Recebi este livro no passado Natal, fruto da minha súbita paixão por Sade e pela sua Justine. Por causa dele, Sade foi condenado à mais infame categoria que um Ser pode recolher. Injustamente.

Esta obra, escrita enquanto Sade se encontrava recluso na Prisão da Bastilha, foi terminada em 37 dias, e para tal, utilizou um rolo contínuo de papel com 12 metros de comprimento. A letra: minúscula. O trabalho físico, imagina-se, terá sido magnânime. O resultado também se pode considerar grandioso, visto...more
Connor Marie-Rose
Personally, I'm one of the people who says this is de Sade's masterpiece. Though, trust me, I know why most functioning people haven't read it. It is, absolutely disgusting, deplorable, and sickening. It nearly made me physically sick. So why read it?
Well first of all I wish to stress that Marquis de Sade was a very good writer, and a very smart man. So if it's his reputation that's keeping you from his books, don't let it stop you.
I'd also like to explain why this novel is relevant. Firstly...more
Dorian Neerdael
Plongeon dans le stupre et la fornication (comme dirait Brassens) pimenté d'un mépris pour les conventions sociales et les règles morales. Ce récit où 4 maîtres s'enferment dans un château reculé pour abuser de jeunes filles et de petits garçons (de vieilles, de servantes, de cuisinière,... également) fait une place d'honneur aux vices, dans un délicieux et terrifiants crescendo de violence.

A noter que les 4 maîtres ne sont pas, bizarrement, a-moraux mais im-moraux. La motivation de leurs mauvai...more
Nick Mather
Having read this book, in its entirety, is probably what will get me sent to hell. This is the only book I have ever read which made me reconsider my stance on censorship. It is definitely not for the faint at heart. It begins with sexual perversions that go beyond what most of us would even consider as titilating. It ends with descriptions of what is nothing short of sadistic torture. So where's the merit? I would say that resides in form, not content, as well as historical curiosity. De Sade w...more
Micheal Grin
In a way, I think that everyone who thinks they've read everything or would read anything needs to read this. I had to order this book just to get my hands on it but when you're trying to read off the top 10 most disturbing or graphic books in history, it's a must.

Not only is the story nothing but a long orgy of sexual deviance and violence, but the Marquis spares no details to acts.

I do not recommend this book to everyone. I recommend it only to those who seek to find the true depths of pervers...more
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Donatien Alphonse François, Marquis de Sade was a French aristocrat, revolutionary politician, philosopher, and writer famous for his libertine sexuality and lifestyle. His works include novels, short stories, plays, dialogues, and political tracts; in his lifetime some were published under his own name, while others appeared anonymously and Sade denied being their author. He is best known for his...more
More about Marquis de Sade...
Justine Justine, Philosophy in the Bedroom, and Other Writings Juliette The 120 Days of Sodom and Other Writings Philosophy in the Boudoir or, The Immoral Mentors

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“If it is the dirty element that gives pleasure to the act of lust, then the dirtier it is, the more pleasurable it is bound to be.” 56 likes
“Oh, there are plenty of people," the Duc used to observe, "who never misbehave save when passion spurs them to ill; later, the fire gone out of them, their now calm spirit peacefully returns to the path of virtue and, thus passing their life going from strife to error and from error to remorse, they end their days in such a way there is no telling just what roles they have enacted on earth. Such persons," he would continue, "must surely be miserable: forever drifting, continually undecided, their entire life is spent detesting in the morning what they did the evening before. Certain to repent of the pleasures they taste, they take their delight in quaking, in such sort they become at once virtuous in crime and criminal in virtue.” 13 likes
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