Chus Martinez On CandaulismPosted: February 16, 2013
Candaulism is a sexual practice or fantasy in which a man exposes his female partner, or images of her, to other people for their voyeuristic pleasure. Such a practice is widely regarded as a breach of trust implicitly placed by the female in her sex partner.
The term may also be applied to the practice of undressing or otherwise exposing a female partner to others, or urging or forcing a female partner to engage in sexual relations with a third person, such as during a swinging activity. There have also been reports of a woman’s partner urging or forcing her into prostitution or pornography, such as in the case of Karen Lancaume and others. Similarly, the term may also be applied to the posting of personal images of a female partner on the Internet or to urging or forcing a female partner to wear clothing which reveals her physical attractiveness to others, such as by wearing very brief clothing, such as a microskirt, tight-fitting or see-through clothing or a low-cut top.
The term is derived from ancient King Candaules who plotted to let his servant Gyges of Lydia to see his wife naked without her knowledge or consent. After discovering Gyges watching her naked, the Queen ordered him to choose between killing himself and killing her husband in order to make good his voyeuristic transgression.
The first identified use of the term is by Richard von Krafft-Ebing in in his book: Psychopathia sexualis: Eine klinisch-forensische Studie (Stuttgart: Enke 1886). It has been hypothesized that the candaulist completely identifies with his partner’s body, and deep in his mind believes he is exposing himself.
The case of Richard Worsley, 7th Baronet of Appuldurcombe against George Bissett for “criminal conversation”, that is adultery with Lady Worsley, revealed an incident in which Sir Richard had assisted Bissett to spy on Lady Worsley taking a bath.
The notorious American FBI agent caught spying for the Soviet Union (later, Russia), Robert Hanssen, took explicit photographs of his wife and sent them to a friend. Later Hanssen invited his friend to clandestinely observe him having sex with his wife during his occasional visits to the Hanssen household.
Initially, his friend watched through a window from outside the house. Later, Hanssen appropriated video equipment from the FBI to set up closed-circuit television to allow his friend to watch from his guest bedroom. Hanssen also posted sexually explicit stories on the Internet crafted to allow readers who knew the Hanssens to identify them, also without his wife’s knowledge.