Dr. J. Rutgers, How to Attain and Practice the Ideal Sex Life. (Das Sexualeben in seiner bioligischen Bedeutung) (Translation 1940) (Written before 1924)
As a how to book, I would have to say that this book fails pretty miserably. It contains much information, some of it ... interesting. But it has very little in the way of practical advice. In fact, arguably nothing in the way of practical advice. It is the ... interesting parts that bring it to my attention.
His views on masturbation are fairly typical for the age. He feels that nocturnal emission is better for you since "during sleep, the sexual excitement does not easily attain the excessive degree which frequently occurs during the daytime. The antagonistic resistence is not so powerful, and above all the manifold complications of our consciousness are almost entirely absent. Everything occurs so gently that sleep is not disturbed at all; at most one experiences agreeable dreams. A little congestion can scarcely be avoided in this congestive function, but everything takes place in the best way possible. With masturbation, the voluntary touching of one's own body in solitude, however, the opposite is the case. For then one is awake; the brain and spinal cord are stimulated and irritated to the highest degree; there is no peaceful rest, no mutual warmth, none of the intoxication of love. One performs this delicate biological function roughly, and becomes so accustomed to crude means, that later in marriage, one scarcely feels any satisfaction from the gentler physiological procedures. p 139.
However, he admits that it can be harmless, and becomes grave "only ... when one is the slave of the habit, just as with alcohol; for one can never tell beforehand how much one may be predisposed to them. ... From the very beginning we should be on our guard." p. 140 But also notes that, despite the fact that "the cell production in the testicles is almost unlimited," the "central nervous system ... soon feels the strain and becomes debilitated." p 284, note 1. And, he posits the existence of "melancholic masturbation, a cryptogamic blossom of the lonely soul, as the picture of the blighted dreams of a defective love life." p. 289.
He also feels that marital sex really is the only appropriate sex, and that "those couples who have anticipated things during their engagement, are still worse off. They were no doubt in the right mood at that time, unusually so in fact, but then their happiness was spoiled, because they were so anxious, so nervous, so afaid of being discovered, and also rather worried over possible consequences. None of these things tended to increase their pleasure, but rather thoroughly to destroy all the more intimate enjoyment; and yet for this, they had run so many risks.
Oddly enough, given this, he also feels that "the objections that may be raised against our modern marriage system as it is at present organized, are numerous and serious. In many respects it is a worn-out and defective institution, originating in abduction of the desired woman, and based on the crudest form of property owning, as if both wife and children were mere goods and chattels of the husband." p. 293. His replacement is not clear, but he states that "we begin already to meet with unsanctified unions that are as honestly intentioned as official marriage and often felt to be far more ideal.
And the changes he would apparently tolerate would be radical changes indeed. For example, he says: "Bigamy would, however be a better term for our marriage, because there are always two persons in every marriage. Here again we have a stupid state of things, that this rule is made and fixed by the law and any deviation from it is punishable. We are not very idealistic at all, if we believe in the boundless character of our sympathy, if three persons may not be allowed to conclude a marriage bond together, when all three earnestly desire it. One would think that should not matter to the legislator." P. 294.
And he is extremely tolerant of homosexuality. While apparently accepting recent "findings" that homosexuality could be altered by a testicle transplant from a heterosexual man, he notes that "the majority of homosexual individuals will probably hesitate to have it performed on them. They are not unahppy on account of their peculiarity, but rather on account of our prejudices. It is we who are diseased and in need of cure." . 42-43. And also "Meanwhile public opinion, mingled with fanatacism, considers that homosexual inclinations are terribly immoral, whereas we see every day before our eyes what an endless amount of immorality and misery are caused by heterosexuality. Although inferior and depraved persons sometimes commit homosexual acts with seduction, prostitution, violence, etc., unfortunately these shocking things come forth out of the realms of darkness still oftener in the heterosexual sphere; and the climax of cruelty and horror, lust-murder, has so far as I am aware, been observed as exclusively of heterosexual origin." P. 142. Concluding "Who knows if the time will not also come one day when the highest class of people wil be amibsexual, feeling affection for both sexes alike, according to the afreement and harmony of their characters, and not always considering the difference of sex as the cardinal point, When they will not be in love with the sex, but will feel attracted by personal human sympathy. Only then such highly gifted people would have the right to dispose us ordinary heterosexual mortals as they would the homosexuals, on account or our limitations." P. 265.
He takes a very dim view of sexual abstinence, saying that it "may really lead to the most serious neuroses and to complete insanity." P 302. Of sexually abstinent women, he says "At first their ailment only manifests itself in a certain amount of psychic depression; the patient feels herself our of sorts, weary, listless, takes no interest in her work and loses all her energy. There is no organic lesion to be found; thefunctional disorders are all little complaints that are not ordinarily so severely felt. When one gradually wins her confidence, one learns that life is cold and devoid of charm. She takes no interest in anything. Poor souls: they often betray their longing for a little affection by petting an animal, or raising plants or flowers or they develop a tremendous liking for a clergyman or dotor; for the richer their spiritual life, the more do they feel the need of affection." P. 300. And of men, he says "Further, it is well worth while enquiring whether retention of secretions in the genital tract may not occasion auto=-intoxication, just as it does in the urinary system and in the intestinal canal, unless the secretory functions are sufficiently stimulated by regularly repeated sexual intercourse." P. 306. He is perfectly willing for people to go childless however, unlike many of his time. He says: "Many readers may possibly think that if abstinence from sexual intercourse is fraught with serious danger, a voluntary or involuntary abstinence from child-bearing must have a very prejudicial effect on the maternal organism, for it has always been looked upon as the 'raison d'etre' of the sexual life. Experience, however, does not bear out this view. On the contrary, the somatic and physical damage and dangers of pregnancy and motherhood unfortunately weigh far too heavily in the balance." P. 306 "In conclusion I must mention how great an effect protracted sexual abstinence may have on the intellectual and moral sensibilitiese of some sufferers, inevitably driving them to despair and profound melancholy, not infrequently also unhinging their minds." P. 304
Much of the rest is not easily categorized, yet too good to skip altogether:
"Even if the descent of the testicles was originally a pathological process, it must be admitted that this migration of both testicles to the exterior of the body is to be consedered as a wholly important event in the history of evolution. Thus, these organs at once became far more accessible than previously to external and voluntary stimulation. This intensifies the make secual life very considerably and brings it more completely into the realm of conscieousness. The increased vulnerability and the possibilities of subsequent hernia which inevitably accompanied this change would certainly count little against the gigantic advantage. This is shown most clearly by the fact that in the survival of the fittest the descended testis has gained the victory, and that the higher orders with their increased sexuality have reached a higher stage of development." P. 30
And in speaking of the development of the fetus. "The offspring is now no longer known as the embryo but as the foetus and lives as a parasite on the maternal circulation until its birth, Thereafter it has an indipendant existence, feeds on other organisms, and grows, at first swiftly, but with gradually decreasing energy until puberty." P.32.
"In the same way as relief is always experienced after the voiding of pus, so sexual desire is relived every time the reproductive cells are cast forth. A certain analogy between the two cannot be denied. P. 45.
"The erection produced so soon after birth in all boys, and the permanent uncovering of the glans, whereby it is to a far greater extent exposed to touch, friction and stimulus, together with a frugal and domesticated life, must have contributed very largely to the great increase and wide distribution of the Jews. P. 74.
"How do the rounded curves of our body originate? They are thus rounded because we develop in the rounded interior of the womb ..." P. 124.
"From the flowers it is now generally known what an important part insects play in fertilization. But the parasites of the human skin play an equally important part. With our asexual or antisexual training, what would become of our sexuality if we did not learn from our earliest youth, especially through occasional insect bites, to relieve local irritation by rubbing, and if we did not notice as we grow older that certain portions of the body are particularly sensitive to this sort of massage, and that the genitalia are especially differentiated for this purpose? Te proper development of these specially appropriate organs depends on this practice. For I have often found that persons specially sensitive to insect stings or bites, are sexually most sensitive and vice versa." P. 158.