Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: May 18, 2009 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412971935 | Print ISBN: 9781412966702 | Online ISBN: 9781412971935| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Sex has, because of various social, cultural, and religious influences, most often been defined as an act best hidden in the private space of the bedroom behind closed curtains and often undertaken in the dark. Within this context, if sex must take place, the most acceptable type is focused on procreation and is, as such, heterosexual. Yet sex for pleasure or fun, inside or outside of relationships of every type of sexuality that has nothing, at least directly, to do with procreation, is a widespread and long-lived reality. This pleasurable sex may be defined as sex play and it encompasses penetrative sex, foreplay, and non-penetrative sex between people and by individuals. As sex play includes all aspects of sex that extend beyond the act of procreation, it is not restricted to heterosexual couplings. Sex play may be undertaken as a source of pleasure, self-enlightenment, relaxation, an aid toward pregnancy, or ...