The Karezza Method
J. William Lloyd
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Pages (PDF): 68
Publication Date: 1931
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The Karezza Method is a beautiful, inspiring manual about the practice of Karezza (controlled intercourse) by J. William Lloyd. Thoughtfully written and based on actual experience, it brims with practical information. Karezza is a gentle, affectionate form of intercourse in which orgasm is not the goal, and ideally does not occur in either partner while making love. Karezza gained its name from Alice Bunker Stockham, MD at the end of the nineteenth century. She based the name on the Italian word carezza, meaning "caress."
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Karezza is controlled non-seminal intercourse. The word Karezza (pronounced Ka-ret-za) is from the Italian and means a caress. Alice B. Stockham, M.D., was the first one who applied it as the distinctive name of the art and method of sexual relations without orgasmal conclusion. But the art and method itself was discovered in 1844 by John Humphrey Noyes, the founder of the Oneida Community, by experiences and experiments in his own marital life. He called it Male Continence. Afterwards George N. Miller, a member of the Community, gave it the name of Zugassent's Discovery in a work of fiction, The Strike of a Sex. There are objections to both these names. Zugassent was not a real person, therefore did not discover it. It was Noyes' Discovery, in fact. Continence, as Dr. Stockham points out, has come to mean abstinence from all intercourse. The Oneida Communists do not appear to have opposed the female orgasm, therefore it was well enough for them to name it Male Continence, but Dr. Stockham and I agree that in the highest form and best expression of the art neither man nor, woman has or desires to have the orgasm, therefore it is no more male than female continence. And a single-word name is always more convenient than a compound. For which reasons I have accepted Dr. Stockham's musical term, which is besides, beautifully suggestive and descriptive. Another writer on this art (I first heard of it through him; he deriving it from Noyes) was Albert Chavannes, who in a little book on it, called it Magnetation, a name which I coined for him. It is perhaps not a bad name; but I now think Karezza better.
Noyes' honor to the discovery has been disputed. Others, it is asserted, discovered it before him or independently since. It is necessary to contest this. Various Europeans and Asiatics probably discovered America before Columbus, but he first made it known and helpful to the world at large, therefore the honor is rightfully his. Exactly so with Noyes - he first made Karezza available to mankind in general.
His little work, Male Continence, is a model of good argument on the matter; but I believe Karezza, by Dr. Stockham, is the only book now in print which treats of it. Several other small works have appeared, but mostly they treat of the subject in such poetic and transcendental terms that the seeker after practical instruction is left still seeking. All writers, too, have tacitly assumed that the woman could do as she pleased in the matter and that success or failure all depended on the man. I regard this as a fundamental error and the cause of most disappointments. Considerations such as these have mainly decided me to write this little work. At this time of agitation on birth control, also, it appears timely. And beyond all looms the extraordinary, one might say unaccountable ignorance of it, not only of ordinary sexual students, but of practically all physicians and even the greatest sexual specialists and teachers. Actually the general public knows more about it than its educators. Thus Forel, in his Sexual Question, never mentions it at all, therefore presumably never heard of it. Bloch, in his professedly exhaustive work, The Sexual Life of Our Times, though he once mentions Dr. Stockham on another matter, has only one ambiguous paragraph in the whole book that can possibly refer to Karezza (apparently some imperfect form of it), disapproving of it on theory only, evidently, without the slightest personal knowledge, or even observation. Havelock Ellis, in the Psychology of Sex, is more instructed and favorable, but appears to have derived his knowledge almost entirely from the Oneida Communists; not at all at first hand. And the general ignorance, indifference, or aversion, even to any experiment, among men, is simply amazing. Most men say at once that it is impossible, most physicians that it is injurious, though with no kind of real knowledge. Most women, on the other hand, who have had any experience of it, eulogize it in unmeasured terms, as the very salvation of their sexual life, the very art and poetry of love, which indeed it is, but, as most men will not attempt it, most women are necessarily kept in ignorance of its inestimable benefits to their sex.
The first objection that is certain to meet one who would recommend Karezza is that it is "unnatural." Noyes confronts this objection very ably, and it is indeed absurd, when you came to think of it, to hear men who drink alcohol, smoke, use tea and coffee, take milk, though adults, eat cooked food, live in heated houses, wear clothes, write books, shave their faces, use machinery, and do a thousand and one things which the natural man, the true aborigine, knew nothing of, condemn a mere act of moderation and self-control in pleasure as "unnatural."
They do not stop to think that if their appeal is to original or animal nature, then they must never have intercourse with the female at all, except when she invites it, is in a certain condition, at certain seasons of the year, and for procreation only. For all intercourse as a love act is clearly "unnatural" in their use of the term. How would they relish that?
These same men will recommend and have their women use douches, drugs, and all sorts of mechanical means to nullify the natural consequences of their act, with never a lisp of protest at the unnaturalness of it all.
As a matter of fact, Karezza is absolutely natural. It employs Nature only and from first to last. To check any act which prudence suggests, or experience has shown, likely to have undesired consequences, is something constantly done throughout all Nature, even among the lowest animals. Karezza is such a check. It is simply prudence and skill in the sexual realm, changing its form and direction of activity in such wise that the desired pleasure may be more fully realized and the undesired results avoided. Nothing more.
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