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The 120 Days of Sodom

The 120 Days of Sodom or the School of Freedoms (Les 120 journées de Sodome ou l'école du libertinage) is an early pornographic book written by the French author Marquis de Sade in 1785 while he was imprisoned in the Bastille.

A group of teenagers is enslaved in a castle by several older men, who perform various sexual perversions on them and eventually kill them, all while listening to stories told by old prostitutes. The book is hardly prose, but rather a list of 600 numbered perversities, five per day.

The original hand-written French manuscript was lost after the storming of the Bastille and turned up much later; the book was not published until 1935. It has since been translated into many languages, including English, Japanese, and German.

In 1975, Pier Paolo Pasolini turned the book into a movie, Salò o le 120 giornate di Sodoma (Salo, or The 120 Days of Sodom). The movie is set in a Nazi environment but can barely touch the perversities listed in the book.

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