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Justine, Philosophy in the Bedroom, and Other Writings
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Justine, Philosophy in the Bedroom, and Other Writings

3.73  ·  Rating details ·  3,074 ratings  ·  145 reviews
No other writer has so scandalized proper society as the Marquis de Sade, but despite the deliberate destruction of over three-quarters of his work, Sade remains a major figure in the history of ideas. His influence on some of the greatest minds of the last century—from Baudelaire and Swinburne to Nietzsche, Dostoyevsky and Kafka—is indisputable. This volume contains Philo ...more
Paperback, 784 pages
Published January 11th 1994 by Grove Press (first published 1791)
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Community Reviews

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Rating details
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Dec 10, 2007 rated it it was ok
*yawn* I don't own this book anymore. It found a good home on a church pew.
Harry Miktarian
Jan 10, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
what a sick bastard...I couldn't put it down.
Don Rea
Jun 01, 2007 rated it liked it
/Justine/ is little more than a prurient joyride unless you've read Rousseau. That is, it's a direct rebuttal of Rouseeau's notions of the noble savage and the social contract. De Sade presents man's unfettered urges as being driven by the pleasure of the moment, regardless of the cost to others. You either happen to be in a position to impose your desires, or you are the object of the desires of others, or both. The savage is not noble in any sense that we might recognize; he is merely a bundle ...more
Sep 07, 2010 rated it it was amazing
As one of the introductory authors mentioned "that those who read know of Sade, but very few ever actually read Sade." I was this person until I finally read this book. My one complaint is that prior to this I had never read Sade, so reading the introduction was a bit daunting. I didn't fully understand their references, those from his literature or historical. So if this is actually your first book of Sade's, or any of the others from this publisher, skip the introduction and read it at the end ...more
Sep 05, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anne rice fans
The Marquis De Sade is definitely a required taste. Not many can sit and read his vulgar words, but I could enjoy them daily. Justine is one of his greatest works, and this book comes with many other little haunting tales to keep you on the edge of your seat.
Mar 26, 2007 added it
Shelves: readin2007
This is weird, but at times I wondered if de sade was an early feminist. His athiestic tirades were dead on, but his rants on women's inferiority were so ridiculous that I wondered if he were "pulling a Jonathan Swift." Folks who have read 120 days of Sadom say not, but I still wonder. I did enjoy it for the philosophy, assinine and not so much, and the kinkiness was not that extreme, except the bleeding one. I loved how he killed her off at the end and by the end he was calling her feeble becau ...more
Nov 18, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: french
This was a difficult book to read. The biographical information and his correspondence are interesting, but this fiction of his is ridiculous. I've racked my brain trying to vindicate the time I've wasted; trying to lend allegorical weight to Sade's philosophy. If the dispensable horrors in Philosophy in the Bedroom and Justine are meant to be satire or reverse psychology, Sade is absolutely awful at it. Perhaps he's like that introvert at a dinner party who carries a joke too far. But once you ...more
May 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Ummmm, what can I say about a book that De Sade has written? If you know about this Libertine Man than you know how his books are going to be. It took me a long time to find these books in the US due to them being banned for a while but I did acquire them, Juliette and Justine, what a wild insatiable appetite this unusual man, or beast as some have called him, had. I truly can not tell you which book was better because they in the shallow sense were the same but in the in depth sense they were a ...more
January Carroll
Nov 20, 2008 rated it did not like it
What a load of dribbling moronic crap! No really, why would a man in prison for more than 40 years equate sex with death and pain and a pathological fear, loathing and desire to subjugate women? Please! The fact that people worship him as a genius is pathetic. I read this book originally as research for something I thought I wanted to write at the time to "rescue" the Justine character.
I changed my mind after I read this ludicrous, infantile treatise. No redeeming qualities, but you have to giv
Jul 28, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sade is nothing if not a challenge. Not because of the predictable outraged sentiments of moral squeamishness or censorious prudery; rather, to those who cannot be scandalized by the mere content of fiction and find pornographic one-upmanship tedious, Sade is a bore. His prolix monomania exemplifies—perhaps even instantiates—what modernists would later call épater les bourgeoisie… ad nauseum. The pattern is brutally mind-numbing: an eloquent encomium to murder, incest, atheism, theft, sodomy, mi ...more
Kathy Stone
Jan 27, 2012 rated it did not like it
I did not like this book. I found it very hard to read because of the sexually explicit content. I personally could never be a libertine because the whole idea of sodomy just disgusts me. Bisexual orgies I find extremely revolting and so this book took much longer to read than I had anticipated. The ripping open of a person's anus is just one act that I find completely reprehensible. The sexual acts are supposed to bring a husband and wife together. These passions are expected to be bridled so t ...more
Nathan "N.R." Gaddis
Nov 01, 2014 marked it as to-read
Recommended to Nathan "N.R." by: Mala
I wrote my dissertation on this. Before it got popular.

Little known fact : Lacan got his Kant avec Sade thesis from that dissertation. Irc, it was a footnote buried somewhere in a discussion of Hegel's thesis about absolute recoil in relation to the transition into the philosophy of nature. Really just a very minor point that the Charlatan de Lacan turned into something that Zizek found sexy.
Melissa Jackson
Aug 09, 2012 rated it liked it
Not as horrific as I thought it would be, vastly more horrific than I ever dreamed. I need to wash out my brain and simultaneously re-evaluate some things. (The fact that Sade was a politician as well as a sex trafficker, rapist and thug adds a whole other ironic element to this fiasco of an erotic treatise.)
May 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Erudit porn at it's best. A god of human sexual perversion.
Jan 12, 2013 rated it liked it

As Maurice Blanchot points out in his excellent essay in Part One of this book, de Sade is the one author that people have heard about, but few have read. After I graduated with a BA in Literature, I put de Sade on my TBR since I had not been exposed to his work. But the more I heard about the man, the less I was inclined to read him. Finally, in 2005, I settled on The 120 Days of Sodom and Other Writings to be my first de Sade (I was fascinated by the scarcity and cost of the movie "Salo;" sinc
Erik Graff
May 06, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: students of sado-masochism
Recommended to Erik by: no one
Shelves: literature
Dad obtained this book in paperback right after Grove Press put it out in '65. For a while it sat in the bookshelf in the living room, then it disappeared into the parental bedroom where, of course, I quickly rediscovered it. Being about thirteen at the time, I found Philosophy in the Bedroom to be stimulating in its earlier parts, but its conclusion and its companion book, Justine, were off-putting.

Later, after I'd entered high school, I actually sat down and read the introduction to the volume
Tom Nittoli
Nov 19, 2012 rated it liked it
Let me preface that three stars is my default rating for anything I don't feel qualified to accurately assess. Although I've read a handful of literature spawning from the eighteenth century, I've in fact read no pornographic tales of lecherous old men, debauchery, and pious charlatans masquerading as important figures with a hankering for despotism, rape, and .....

The two essays in the beginning are very helpful for context and explanatory notes. They work almost like a narrator setting the ti
Feb 01, 2013 rated it it was ok
The problem with all of the Marquis de Sade's work is that it's one-handed reading mixed in with endless pages of "philosophy" (actually, more like "thought diarrhea").

Le Marquis was neither a great writer (in French or in translation) nor a great thinker. He did compile a lot of ideas that I may never have run into otherwise (coprophagia being one example, "foutre" in the passe simple another).

I read the Marquis in my late teens. What I recall are variations of gratuitous rape, anal sex, copr
John Christy
Apr 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Sade's spittle and bile for polite society is never on better display than here. As he probably would have predicted, we've become worse and more hypocritical than ever before. Progress is a myth; we like to pretend we've become transgressive, but in fact we've only turned sex and violence into cartoons - in fact we're scandalized more than ever by the real. This is particularly true among the progressives, leftists, and liberal priests who like to walk around and prattle about liberty while bei ...more
Jul 25, 2015 rated it really liked it
This book makes me wonder why now we are so shock for this practices, but we keep doing them in silence and as taboo? I read this book again recently, and its just weird to read it and think how people think of 50 shades of gray being "too much".
I love it, the way its written, the crude of the moments and the descriptions leaving just a very vague empty space, but most of all I want to know and I keep reading it, and I feel anger, as a woman, I do feel angry, but the writer had me in the net, a
Apr 07, 2013 rated it did not like it
You should definitely read it, if only for the fact that de Sade is a classic as far as erotica goes. But were it not that the book would end up as trash faster than you can say "God, why? why!?"
Characters are flat, plot is ridiculus and supposedly erotic scenes vary from boring to just plainly laughable.
Rosa Ramôa
Nov 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
"...e que nada nem ninguém é mais importante do que nós próprios. E não devemos negar-nos nenhum prazer, nenhuma experiência, nenhuma satisfação, desculpando-nos com a moral, a religião ou os costumes"...

(Marquês de Sade)
Jun 18, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: did-not-finish
Fascinating, and impossible to read.
Jun 09, 2011 rated it did not like it
Jan 12, 2011 rated it liked it
Something that one reads once and then again. Makes one think of what is moral, what boundaries should or should not be tested.

Scary to some, thrilling to others.
Robert Sheppard

The word "libertine' entered the English language not as a sexual term but as a by-product of the wars of religion between Protestants and Catholics in Sixteenth Century Europe, being
Nov 30, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I thought I'd read stuff in fanfic, but this blew everything out of the water.
Sep 19, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, sexology
If you’ve also never read Sade before, then this is the omnibus for you. Yes, it’s very dense, but it contains all the major works and enough criticism to understand his philosophy within its historical context.

The front matter includes two essays, one critical and one biographical. The critical essay is especially helpful because it explains that Sade was writing in opposition to Rousseau whose idea of Natural Man Sade had to negate. A chronology follows these essays then seven letters, notes
Nick Crawford
Something fascinating, essential to any engaged in ethics. But to be read with a neutral eye. Take my 3 stars to be an impassive non-rating. A must read and must run away from.

I write leaving 100 pages in Justine herself as well as scandalously leaving my beloved Blanchot's essay like a favorite treat to malinger unread for another day. There's an infectious urge one gets to turn the next page with Sade, but pushing too far does alter one's temperament, and it's time for me to swim in warmer wat
Sylvester Kuo
This volume consisted of three de Sade works: Philosophy of the Bedroom, Eugenie de Franval and Justine, or Good Conduct Well Chastised. It has contains a few of the letters de Sade wrote while imprisoned and a short tale on Atheism.

Philosophy of the Bedroom was my favourite in this volume, it is essentially written in the form of a play. Madame de Saint-Ange and Le Chevalier de Mirval are a pair of libertine sibling trying to educate a 15-year-old girl Eugine into becoming a libertine. Along c
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Philosophy of the Libertine 2 19 Jul 27, 2014 04:12PM  
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Donatien Alphonse François, Marquis de Sade (1740-1814) 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 kn
“The man who alters his way of thinking to suit others is a fool.” 91 likes
“Destruction, hence, like creation, is one of Nature's mandates.” 41 likes
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