Venus In Furs
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Venus In Furs

3.66 of 5 stars 3.66  ·  rating details  ·  4,387 ratings  ·  328 reviews
First published in 1870, this novella has since become the best-known of Sacher-Masoch's works. This Austrian author imagined an epic series entitled the 'Legacy of Cain,' and "Venus in Furs" has become the most famous of the first volume. The nested narrative begins with a nameless narrator who dreams of speaking to the goddess Venus about love as she wears furs. When he...more
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Published January 1st 2010 by Neeland Media LLC (first published 1870)
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Paquita Maria Sanchez
Umm, okay...

The first portion of this book is wonderful. The forced lasciviousness of the female protagonist, the pathetic attempts at seeming like a banshee, a Siren, all draped in furs and spouting some bullshit about Paganism. I have met this girl before, and this boy, I have watched their pitiful dance of apathy, their ham-handed fears of monotony and monogamy, the (in my opinion) bullshit notion that caring in the romantic sense for one chosen and well-suited person with whom you specifical...more
Elizabeth
"To be the slave of a woman, a beautiful woman, whom I love, whom I worship - !"
"And who mistreats you for it," Wanda broke in, laughing.
"Yes, who ties me up and whips me, who kicks me when she belong to another man."


If submission and bondage is your thing, then you will probably like this book. In a nutshell, Severin likes women. Severin likes women who are filthy rich. Severin likes women who are filthy rich and treat him like shit. Wanda is that woman. That is pretty much what Venus in Furs i...more
Alex
Apr 01, 2013 Alex rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who wear fancy gloves to Renaissance Faires
"You interest me. Most men are very commonplace, without verve or poetry. In you there is a certain depth and capacity for enthusiasm and a deep seriousness, which delight me. I might learn to love you." (20)

This line really jumped out at me, because it's just what I imagine a lot of nerds imagine some lady will say to them some day. And they'll be like yeah! I have a depth and capacity for enthusiasm! I was just waiting for someone to notice! I bet nerds really like this book, which was written...more
Greg
How I caused irreparable harm to our entire country because of a relationship gone sour with the author of Anti-Oedipus"

Confession time. I didn't really read this book, but I'm going to rate it anyway. I did read the Deleuze book Cruelty, which is him writing about Venus in Furs, and then the book itself. I remember really liking the Deleuze part, but at that point in my life I was so in love with Deleuze that he could have written anything and I would have ejaculated all over it. It was a bad t...more
Sunday
This book is a hike up Giggle Mountain, with a Joan Crawford-esque heroine in yummy furs. It's hard to dislike a book with so much kink and melodrama.

This book is the height of fun sex stuff and strange, twisted relationships. It's a pure exploration of "feels and fantasy." It fits nicely beside other books I place beside it, such as "The Story of the Eye," "The Sheik," and maybe a little bit of "Madame Bovary." I disagree with many reviewers who believe that this text has impacted society, and...more
Meredith
Haven't reviewed on goodreads in a while, but was googling this work's translation dates and came across the negative reviews here. Thought I should contribute my defence.

What Makes Venus in Furs a groundbreaking and thoroughly enjoyable work?

1)Literary tradition

The finely-rendered frame structure follows the German novella tradition's strong, almost proscriptive, tradition of narrative framing (think Goethe, Storm, Hoffmann). Accordingly, it created a sensation among early readers by presenting...more
Jessica
Dec 13, 2007 Jessica rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: kids who are just getting into the velvet underground
If I remember correctly, this book was stupid. It also seems to have contributed to a lot of ridiculous behavior, and has led indirectly to many horrendous cultural products such as "people taking their silly sex hang-ups waaaaay too seriously," "fetish nights," "vinyl outfits," and "that irritating kid in your freshman dorm who walked around with a leash around his neck."

BUT, on the PLUS side, having read it made me feel way more knowledgeable about the VU song on the banana album, which I gues...more
Tia Katrina Canlas
The vocabulary in this book mirrored its repetitive plot. It was as if Leopold Von Sacher-Masoch's translator was assigned to use the words "dilettante", "suprasensual", and "ermine" as many times as humanly possible in the course of 100 pages-- to lazily tell a story about a man who wants to be his lover's slave. Wanda's character tortures her readers more than she does Severin by boring us to tears.

When Sacher-Masoch did finally catch my attention for once, I was left disappointed, filling in...more
Evan
I wanted to write an in-depth review, quoting favorite passages from the book, but for now let's just say that this was the right read for me at the right time. I was expecting it to be titillating and dirty but instead encountered something rather lovely: a concentrated tale of obsession and longing and risky role playing that turns a woman emulating a simple ancient Grecian hedonism into a enthusiastic wielder of capricious physical and mental cruelty -- rendered to the sadomasochistic male lo...more
hypothermya
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Christina
This book is great, short as it is. And I was hankering to try another book on the topic of female domination after reading "Permanent Obscurity" by Richard Perez, which I truly enjoyed. "Venus in Furs" starts out a little stiffly but ups the ante as Severin gets himself into more trouble than he bargained for. Yeah, my word of caution to all you would-be male slaves out there: Be careful what you wish for! If your dream is be debased, be prepared when it happens! Come to think of it, it reads l...more
Shamus McCarty
So I finally picked this back up and I remembered why I stopped reading it. This guy is just such a PUSSY! Nothing against Leopold, (or pussy, one of the most powerful things on Earth) he wrote a pretty progressive book for his time. But JeeeZeus!

Anyways, I doubt my 1 star will hurt the ratings of this masterpiece. And I really do respect it as a masterpiece, due to the era in which it was written. But the Mona Lisa is also a masterpiece that’s not very impressive 600 years later.
Rachel
This book is a fascinating, if a bit unsettling, exploration of the more aberrant relationships that can exist between the sexes. I've always been somewhat surprised that so few people seem to have read it; they may have heard of it, or know vague details as to the plot, which is still infamous even by today's standards, but it does tend to get overlooked as one of the great books of its time period. Personally, I'd recommend it highly, if for no other reason than to experience the subversive lo...more
Kelly
I really liked this book. I guess because masochism is something hard for me to grasp and understand, it made it all the more intriguing to read about, especially when it was written so long ago.
Ben
If you've ever had doubts about the inherent transgressive qualities of fiction, Dr. Leopold von Sacher-Masoch's philosophical treatise disguised as an erotic novella is sure to dispell them. Forever memoralized by the word coined from the author's name, "masochist," you don't have to loath yourself to love Venus in Furs. I found the prose--even in translation--simply stunning. Further, it is amazing that with such a simple premise, Sacher-Masoch continues to reinvent the story, spicing the tale...more
kaelan
I often find that I will initially be enthralled by a new book; but, as I read on, my attention will begin to flag, and my interest wane. Venus in Furs, however, was different. Yes, I was hooked from the very first pages. And yes, I began to get—not ‘bored,’ per se, but apprehensive about halfway through. Apprehensive, as in: maybe this isn’t really as good as I thought; maybe my expectations were too high....

But upon reaching the conclusion of the novel—an ending which, I must admit, I did not...more
Suvi
A guy glanced at me suspiciously at the uni cafeteria when he saw what I was reading. I had an extremely hard time keeping a straight face :P

Krhm, anyway, I pretty much loved this. Well... As in I am not into kinkyness but I liked the flickering dream atmosphere where art had an important role. The beginning especially was gorgeous and the themes of savageness, dreaming, love, cruelty and wearing fur were very interesting. I just wish Severin had more guts to actually take everything he got from...more
Jaybird Rex
Reading through the other reviews it looks like many folks just blow this off as dullish Victorian erotica (maybe better than De Sade, maybe not), and not altogether deep. I have to disagree, mainly because I think sex is only one facet of what's going on here. Venus in Furs deals with THE fundamental dilemmas we humans face in being something between angels and bloodthirsty apes. The dream at the beginning of the book is a beautiful start to a bold work -- not bold in that it's racy or kinky, b...more
Rebecca
What larks. Got all political at the end, apparently us women are tyrannous in love on account of social oppression.

*threatens theory with whip* ;)

Bogdan
публикация романа захер-мазоха «венера в мехах» в 1869 году стала событием, изменившим как образ литературного произведения (ведь концепция интимности такого рода не была представлена в литературе), так и концепцию субъекта, поскольку в нем приоткрываются такие глубины скрытых страстей, которые дотоле могли считаться разве что «безумными» и «болезненными», оставаясь таковыми еще долгое время, ведь даже в конце позапрошлого века в работе крафт-эббинга «сексуальная патология», называясь мазохизмом...more
Juushika
Severin von Kusiemski is a European nobleman who has always fantasized about and found pleasure in pain and submission, a condition that he terms suprasensuality. In his memoir he recounts an affair with Wanda von Dunajew, a woman of voluptuous, cruel sexuality. He asks to become her slave and submits to increasingly degrading treatment—until Wanda meet a man to whom she wishes to submit. A classic text, Venus in Furs has a writing style that may not appeal to all readers: the narratives delves...more
Luisa
Io non credo che il tema principale di questo libro sia l'amore.
Non lo dico perché tutta la violenza presente mi porta a dire che "tutto può essere tranne che amore", ma perché ritengo veramente che il tema nascosto sia la valutazione della donna e la sua importanza nella società. Insomma è più un libro di denuncia sociale che erotico. O comunque, io preferisco pensarla così. Proprio nell'ultima pagina c'è scritto "Ma la morale?" "Che la donna, a tutt'oggi, quale la natura l'ha creata e nei suo...more
Marina
Потрясающая книга!
Я впервые думала о том, что 1,5 часа до работы это слишком мало.
Повествование затягивает, не вызывает отвращения и даже наоборот - становится жутко любопытно - почему, зачем и чем все это кончится?

Да, мне нравятся книги о больных людях. Они обладают какой-то волшебной притягательностью мира, о котором я ничего не знаю.
DC
This book is not exactly pornographic in nature, but I could say that it may be classified as erotica. It also has a dash of intellect, although I felt as if the entire BDSM thing was brushed off as a deviance in the end.

Because yes, this is a book about bondage / discipline / dominance / submission / sadism / masochism.

This book was written by (what I'd imagine to be) a smart man, using a rather intellectual way of writing. Sure, it's about a rather known-to-be-deviant subject, but he does it...more
Lene
Dec 16, 2010 Lene rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone: you might learn something about your own motivations.
Shelves: disturbing, genius
This book was 132 densely packed pages of human neuroses. I found several of the passages ringing uncomfortably true/familiar as I read them. I have known couples who played similar, if less extreme, games with each other but seldom with as much honesty as was portrayed here; Masochism indeed! The are bits of the vividly painted characters of Wanda and Severin in each of us; the capacity to surrender to and be ruled over by obsessive love is outweighed only by the latent (or not so latent) poten...more
Michelle
Anyone who knows me, knows I enjoy a healthy measure of smut in my reading. One glance at my bookshelves containing volumes of the Marquis de Sade’s work will confirms this. Having wanted to read Venus in Furs for a few years I decided now, as a quick read it would be perfect. How wrong I was. For its time (1870) I can imagine why this book was possibly deemed as shocking and deeply immoral however, I found it uncomfortable yet well written.

The story is framed around Severin, a young Galician no...more
Dayes Mohammed
يوجد شيء ٌ من الخساسة في العلاقة بين الرجل و المرأة ، خصوصا ً في علاقة الحب ، هناك شيء ٌ من الإذلال ، دائما ً ما أقول أن الحب لا يكتمل إلا بالتخلي عن فكرتي التملّك و الكرامة ، لكن عزيزي سيفرين ليس إلى هذا الحد ، ربما تكون واندا جميلة ، جميلة جدا ً لكن لا أظن إلى هذه الدرجة .

كتعريف مختصر جدا ً بمازوخ ، هو أحد أهم كتّاب اليوتوبيا في القرن التاسع عشر ، في أوروربا.

الرواية تستحق القراءة ، مستوى القذارة البشرية فيها أقل بكثير مما هو متداول ، مازوخ يطرح حالة نفسية متطورة هي سيفرين ، المصاب بأزمة الإعجا...more
Becky
Venus in furs is essentially a short story told as a warning against allowing yourself to become the slave of beauty. Severin, the chief protagonist, dreams of being dominated by a goddess in furs, but finds that the actual experience cures him of these desires. The central premise is that one can choose to either be the hammer or the anvil within a relationship. Neither of these situations are seen as being desirable. The novel itself contains a very modern final note, the disparity in relation...more
Fernanda
Bello más no excepcional. Parece ser que muchos esperaban una clase de novela erótica-pornográfica-sensualona, pero se vieron decepcionados al ver que sólo es un bello trozo de literatura (un tanto sensual) que simplemente muestra una relación enfermiza entre una hermosa mujer que juega un papel de cruel ante un hombre que básicamente le suplicó que lo maltratara como a los peores.

La historia comienza con un interesante sueño de alguien ajeno a la historia, fue una conversación entre este hombre...more
Panoramaisland
I would like to love this book, but I do not.

Taken as a list of ingredients, the book is right up my alley:
-Landmark document in the history of kink, the book which led Krafft-Ebing to term erotic pleasure derived from pain "masochism"
-Divulgement of the author's treasured fantasies, hashed out with nearly fannish enthusiasm
-Classic exploration of sadomasochism, submission and control
-Indulges in uniform fetishism and service submission, favorites of mine, as well as the titular heavy furs
-Set i...more
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77556
Austrian writer and journalist, who gained renown for his romantic stories of Galician life. The term masochism is derived from his name.

During his lifetime, Sacher-Masoch was well known as a man of letters, a utopian thinker who espoused socialist and humanist ideals in his fiction and non-fiction. Most of his works remain untranslated into English. The novel Venus in Furs is his only book common...more
More about Leopold von Sacher-Masoch...
Venus in Furs and Selected Stories Σκληροί έρωτες Master Masochist: Tales of a Sadistic Mistress Love: The Legacy of Cain Don Juan Von Kolomea: Galizische Geschichten

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“You have corrupted my imagination and inflamed my blood...” 153 likes
“Love knows no virtue, no merit; it loves and forgives and tolerates everything because it must. We are not guided by reason...” 52 likes
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