Devotees of corporal punishment form a sort of self-selected subculture within the already specialized world of sadomasochistic sexuality. Indeed, many “spankers” reject the application of sadomasochistic nomenclature (as opposed to the application of birches or nettles) to themselves and their tastes. There has always been a whiff of snobbery to the CP milieu, which partakes heavily of the symbolism of upper-class, single-sex education. Unashamedly Anglophile, CP culture reflects an appreciation of the erotic uses of hypocrisy.
The Female Disciplinary Manual, whose authorship is attributed collectively to The Standing Committee on Female Education, purports to be an official document from some future society in which corporal punishment is routinely employed in education, in the workplace and at home. It details, as only obsessional narratives can, all the different implements that may properly be employed for this purpose, ranging from slippers to straps, and all the ritualistic scoldings and expressions of penitence that should properly be expected from disciplinarians and their charges. Even the correct diameters of canes to be wielded for differing offenders and offenses are inventoried. In all these proceedings, the element of sexual arousal, while never fully denied, is regarded as an unintended and suspect consequence of punitive necessity.
Most American CP enthusiasts—and they are legion, both male and female—are products of co-ed public schools where physical punishment is foreplay to litigation. Perhaps the charm of these small volumes lies in their staunch refusal to analyze the desires they are meant to inflame. CP culture is built around shame, the most effective antidote to guilt. IL
Publisher: Wild Fire Club
Hardback: 112 pages