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La Crimson Femme

Welcome to my dungeon ~ book reviews, musings and education relating to erotica, graphic sex and more. I love gentle pain mixed with rough pleasure.

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The History & Arts of the Dominatrix

The History & Arts of the Dominatrix - Anne O. Nomis The subject of a Dominatrix is whispered in circles among silly titters or hushed lustful sighs. When the word Dominatrix is mentioned, an image of a fierce woman in a corset, leather and high heels wielding a whip is most common. The question is, where did the dominatrix originate? Is this a relatively new phenomenon or have they been throughout history? Are there famous dominatrix throughout history? What are signs of a good dominatrix and how does one become a dominatrix? Anne O Nomis dives into the underground world of sexual deviance to find the elusive dominatrix. She searches through archives and museums for references to ancient women of power. In a beautifully leather bound book, she shares her research in five easy chapters.

This book is lovingly created. It's rare a dead tree book catches my attention. This one is a collector's edition hardcover with heavy pages and colourful art. The cover is tastefully gold embossed with discrete designs. I can't remember the last time I owned a hardcover which came with its own ribbon bookmark. The book feels good in my hands. It's elegant and classy, as is the photo of the author on the back of the book.

The preface starts off with the trials and tribulations in bringing this book into print. It is an interesting read and makes me appreciate the book more. The first chapter covers ancient dominatrix as it relates to goddesses and priestess initiates. Ms. Nomis does a good job of condensing the information in forty odd pages. With an unlimited budget and an ability to speak many language, Ms. Nomis could create several volumes on ancient dominatrix across multiple cultures. Her focus is only on the ancient western world with the Middle East commonly referred to the Fertile Crescent area. Her insights into the possible downfall of strong women archetypes make sense and popular theory among those in women studies fields. It is no surprise the difficulty in finding details on women in the past, especially in patriarchal societies. Still, even in the Eastern cultures, there are some women both myth and real who stand out. I'd like to suggest a few Chinese women in ancient China who qualify as a dominatrix: Yang Guifei, Qin Liangyu, Princess Pingyang and Ng Mui.

The second chapter moves into the seventeenth to nineteenth centuries in western Europe through strict governesses and flagellation houses. This is a more familiar area. Based on my own personal experiences and research, I would agree Ms. Nomis is spot on with this chapter. Whilst the focus is on men being dominated by these strict women, I'd like to propose to expand this to female submissives. This is another piece I found missing in the book. It only really deals with femdom in a heterosexual manner. There is little about F/f domination. Still, it's probably best Ms. Nomis keeps the focus on F/m or the book would be rather lengthy.

The third and fourth chapters depict more famous dominatrix in the past fifty odd years. It's horrifying to learn in the USA, people were convicted of private lewdness. It is educational to learn about how the US Postal Service provided assistance into persecuting and harassing people. Ms. Nomis does a good job of showing how society changed in the past fifty years. The last chapter depicts seven "realms" of the dominatrix art form. Honestly, this chapter fizzled the book out for me. It didn't capture my attention perhaps because the categorizations didn't mean much to me. For some, it may help them understand better how a dominatrix interacts with a male submissive. For those who are in the lifestyle, this is the basics and can be skimmed through. For those who are new to the BDSM lifestyle, it may be more beneficial.

There is another item I learned which is noteworthy. The training of dominatrix is interesting and a bit disappointing. Ms. Nomis highlights what she witnesses in Australia. These professional houses are showcased in a way which portrays catty backstabbing women. Not the best and unfortunately too accurate in many places, even outside of the lifestyle. Fortunately, my message to budding dominatrixes - not all places train in such poor ways. From a business sense, I can see many flaws in how the training is designed as shown in this book. From a personal experience, I've just completed a yearlong mentorship for dominants and I can attest there is training which includes benevolent dominants in a supportive environment.

Overall, this book is well put together, focused and easy to read. It's the first of its kind and I can only hope Ms. Nomis will continue her research and write more about Dominatrixes. Recommended for kinksters interested in learning more about the elusive female dominant.

*provided by BDSM Book Reviews