Why Are People Into That?: A Cultural Investigation of Kink (Hardcover)

Why Are People Into That?: A Cultural Investigation of Kink By Tina Horn Cover Image
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From a #1 Apple podcast host, Lambda Literary fellow, and dominatrix comes a sex-positive, judgment-free cultural deep-dive into the world of kink.

When celebrated BDSM educator Tina Horn first launched Why Are People Into That?!, publications from Vice to Buzzfeed heralded it as one of the best sex podcasts around. Each episode centered around a different fetish or fantasy, thoughtfully examining why, exactly, different strokes work for different folks. From sex workers and scientists to artists and activists, Tina’s wide range of guests helped educate fascinated listeners across the world on the wide spectrum of humanity’s appetites. With her listeners growing more and more insatiable, she soon realized that the only way to address the titular question with all the depth and nuance it deserved was to turn that idea into a book.

From spanking, strap-ons, and sluts, to taboos involving cake, chains, and cannibalism, WHY ARE PEOPLE INTO THAT? explores the universal drives that shape even the most specific erotic tastes, and the cultural context that molds and is molded by the way we conceptualize pleasure, gender, fantasy, and power. With buoyant prose, Tina invites us to reconsider everything we thought we knew about sexuality. How, for example, should we think about "consensual nonconsent" in a post-#MeToo era? How does cross-dressing fit in with our evolving cultural understanding of gender performance and identity? And what do foot fetishists, fisters, and FinDoms have in common?

Blending insightful cultural criticism, investigative journalism, and spicy anecdotes from Tina’s 15+ years of hard-earned expertise in the sex industry and beyond, WHY ARE PEOPLE INTO THAT? is a philosophical-but-fun exploration of the prismatic spectrum of human desire and the expansive possibilities of pleasure. For fans of adrienne maree brown and Emily Nagoski, this raunchy and rousing book is perfect for anyone who is interested not only in the intricacies of what we desire, but in how desire itself really works.

About the Author

Tina Horn hosts and produces the long-running fetish podcast Why Are People Into That?! and was the host and co-writer of the Wondery podcast limited series, Operator. She is the creator of the sci-fi sex rebel comic book series SfSx (Safe Sex) and has contributed to numerous anthologies including We Too: Essays on Sex Work and Survival, which she also co-edited. Horn is the winner of two Feminist Porn Awards, an AVN-nominated director, and holds an MFA in Creative Nonfiction Writing from Sarah Lawrence. Originally from Northern California, Horn spent a decade in NYC before re-settling in Los Angeles with her wife and dog.

Praise For…

 “Tina Horn is that rare writer on sex: a super-sharp observer and a daring thinker who is as curious, warm, and uncompromising in approaching her subject as she is about why it matters. What I love and admire so much about Tina’s work is how she makes desire bigger.”—MELISSA GIRA GRANT, author of Playing the Whore: The Work of Sex Work and staff writer at The New Republic

“Tina Horn is the king, queen, and court jester of skintellectuals. No one can undress taboos and demystify desire like she can.”—KRISTEN J. SOLLÉE, author of Witches, Sluts, Feminists

“Finally, a book about sex that is actually sexy. Full of curiosity, profound knowledge, a command of craft, and—yes—eros, Tina Horn isn’t here to explain, she is here to explore. Horn’s prose is that of a sexy teacher but only in the kinky way. Why Are People Into That? isn’t a textbook; it’s a choose your own adventure of erotic delights. In a way, every reader will hold in their hands a different book, exactly the one they, and only they, need.”—JOSEPH OSMUNDSON, author of Virology, a National Book Critics Circle Award finalist in nonfiction

“Tina Horn is the Carl Sagan of a sexual cosmos, absorbing carnal knowledge and disseminating it to the masses with narration that leaves us marveling at the glory that is human sexuality.”—JIZ LEE, adult performer and editor of Coming Out Like a Porn Star

"There are more Sex Things in heaven and earth than are dreamt of in our philosophy, and in these culture-clashy times most of them are pretty fraught. So you need to read Tina Horn's book if you have ever ventured onto the internet and shrieked over what you found there (or went there on purpose desperately looking to learn if you were alone or had a community or maybe a sex worker waiting to greet you for an afternoon of bliss and discovery. This book will help you understand how truly indispensable sex work is). But y'all are going to come for the pervy reading and stay for Horn's delightful voice and deep thinking about all the doors opened by our erotic and kinky impulses, because make no mistake, besides a mix of memoir and street sexology, this IS a work of philosophy. You might close the book, as I did, with a new fetish or two... mine is Horn's incredible brain."—CAROL QUEEN, PhD, The Leather Daddy & the Femme and Real Live Nude Girl: Chronicles of Sex-Positive Culture

"Featuring sharp analysis and a solid dose of humor... Horn generously interjects aspects of her own kink identity into every chapter, offering anecdotes, intimate stories, erotic musings, and truths about her early beginnings in the sex industry and, later, as a sadomasochistic sex worker... Horn delivers refreshing opinions on gender, identity, and the need for a new societal code of sexual ethics based on imagination, curiosity, and communication... Each [kink] benefits from pages of intriguing, judgment-free inspection, and the author approaches all her material with the authenticity and cultural analysis only a true aficionado of sexual exploration like Horn could deliver. Perfect for kink enthusiasts, the 'pervert-curious,' and fans of Horn’s titular sexuality podcast, the book respectfully isolates a heady collection of fetishes that, for many, represent sexual freedom in all its kaleidoscopic wonder. A probing, sex-positive report on the origins and values of fetishes."


"Readers will appreciate Horn’s graceful synthesis of cultural analysis and scientific fact, as well as her ability to broach taboo topics in nonjudgmental terms—sexual taste, she writes, is 'no different from a preference for spicy or sweet food.' Curious readers will glean plenty."—Publishers Weekly

“An inspiration and an invitation to embrace the glorious kaleidoscope of human sexuality.”—Booklist

"[S]uperbly enjoyable... Humor and seriousness share pages harmoniously. Most importantly, I left feeling like I detached a few harmful preconceived notions I didn’t even know were there. That’s the real joy of this book: It’ll challenge some of your problematic notions no matter how confident you are in your sex positivity... My understanding of kinkiness is better having read the book."—Autostraddle

Product Details
ISBN: 9780306832567
ISBN-10: 0306832569
Publisher: Hachette Books
Publication Date: June 4th, 2024
Pages: 320
Language: English