In an effort to understand paraphilia, pornography, and ethical and legal issues in the work of Twenty-Two Faces author Judy Byington, we propose new terminology.

Child Sexual Abuse Narraphilia

Child Sexual Abuse Narrative Paraphilia —more commonly called CSA Narraphilia (CSAN) — refers to the act of deriving pleasure from authoring or hearing or reading or sharing narratives of child sexual abuse.

CSA Narraphilia may take may take as many forms as Child Sexual Abuse itself. CSA Mythomania (CSAM) is a form of CSA Narraphilia which refers to the act of deriving pleasure specifically from creating—i.e. authoring—fictional narratives of child sexual abuse, and presenting them as factual. [1]

We would argue that among the abuses are those perpetrated by the psychologists / authors who benefit from genre — and whose abuses are all-too real in spite of genre of ritual abuse itself being largely a fraud.
In authoring and telling fictional narratives of sexual abuse—stories that are known to the author or teller to be false, more often we see not a paraphilia as the motivation behind the storytelling, but a calculated use of the story’s emotional and legal “impact” to effect a desired change/outcome. That is, the fictional story creates a change in “real life” -- such as sending a real person to a real prison. [2]

Other motives for crafting and sharing fictional narratives of child sexual abuse include, of course, reaping the financial rewards of catering to the child-porn audience while publishing a "purely" textual, and thus ostensibly legal, form of child porn. (The books' presentation as nonfiction may also help to relieve the shame of the reader.) [3]

Ritual Abuse Paraphilia

Ritual Abuse Mythomania (RAM) is a more specific diagnosis under the general heading of CSA Mythomania. In cases of RAM, the experience of pleasure on the part of the author or storyteller is frequently -- but not always -- religious or sexual in nature, or both; but the "genre" of ritual abuse narratives is, by definition, one that details alleged "perversions" of religious and sexual acts.

It is also important to note that some paraphilias -- and not only among Ritual Abuse paraphilias -- may include a predilection for aversion itself. For example, the case study of "Michael," the "widely respected Christian Progressive" who would "ordinarily" find feces undesirable and a topic "not appropriate for dinner conversation," but in the context of anal sex was highly aroused by the smell of his wife's anus, and would also frequently masturbate to the fantasy of his wife engaging in post-anal fellatio with his (or another man's) "soiled" penis (Butler, 2013).

Although desires and fantasies such as above may be victimless, we see, in cases of abuse-based aversion paraphilia, different concerns arise. For example, the 2013 case of Lisa Biron, the "anti-gay activist" and "Christian attorney" associated with the anti-gay litigation group, Alliance Defending Freedom, who was found guilty on eight charges related to child pornography and child sexual assault on a female child, including
sexual exploitation of children and possession of child pornography, stemming from "taking a 14-year-old girl to Canada to make a child porn film,... sexually exploiting the girl in making videos of her with another man, and making a cellphone video of herself engaged in sexual activity with the girl."
Present civil and criminal law would also seem to suggest that authors of ritual child sexual abuse pornography, however popular, are tip-toeing through some very tender tulips, penning texts that may be generously described as “barely legal” today….
Ritual-abuse pornography, paraphilia, and mythomania date from time immemorial, though are traditionally linked with Judeo-Christian religion and the prosecution and punishment of persons for alleged sexual and religious "perversions." Interestingly, while doubt lingers to this day to the efficacy of witchcraft -- to say nothing of how many persons tried as witches were indeed witches or confessed as much only under torture -- there is no doubt as to the effectiveness of personal, social, and legal campaigns to eradicate such "diabolical perversion."[4]

No longer the province of learned men and priests alone (scribbling fiery diatribes in Latin for the benefit of other learned men and, occasionally, the accused), nor even necessarily a clandestine activity, such as "traditional" child porn, Ritual Abuse Pornography is now widely available, from Amazon to JStor to Walmart.

The present tenor and style is frequently attributed to the 1980 best-selling "true story" Michelle Remembers, which in fact coined the term "Satanic Ritual Abuse," co-authored by psychologist Lawrence Pazder and his patient, alleged Satanic Ritual Abuse "survivor" Michelle Smith, whom Pazder would go on to marry. The two would later cement their fame by acting as consultants for the prosecution in what would become not only the first high-profile trial for Satanic Ritual Abuse in the US, but the longest and most expensive trial in American history at that time, commonly known as the McMartin Preschool trial, which then effectively launched the term Satanic Ritual Abuse out of the circle of the literate alone, and into the Primetime crowd.

Ritual abuse pornography today is spread across multiple genres, all marketed as “nonfiction,” including memoirs, biographies, biographical novels (such as Twenty-Two Faces) and alleged studies penned by any number of professed experts on the subject.

Recent purported psychology texts on the topics of (satanic-) ritual abuse and "mind control" include the 2011 anthology Ritual Abuse and Mind Control, aptly subtitled "The Manipulation of Attachment Needs" (Karnac Books; Orit Badouk Epstein and Joseph and Rachel Wingfield Schwartz, eds.) as well as the 26-contributor anthology of "psychological, forensic, social, and political considerations" of  ritual abuse and mind control, Ritual Abuse in the 21st Century (Robert D. Reed Publishers, 2008; Pamela and Randy Noblitt, eds.).

All genres of child abuse pornography have in common their detailed narration or discussion of “unspeakable” abuses of children: details which may also be read variously as rape porn, torture porn, murder porn, religious porn, and, of course, “traditional” child porn.

Both the authors and the subject(s) of ritual abuse pornography are frequently anonymous, or pseudonymous—for their protection, the reader is made to understand—specifically, protection from global satanic cults that have infiltrated all levels of media and government.

Frequently the authors are private therapists with numerous, even hundreds, of clients who believe they are victims of ritual abuse and mind control. While such numbers may seem shocking to the casual reader, it must be understood that ritual abuse therapists frequently boast that they have treated these high numbers of survivors, perhaps believing it affirms the reality of their "expertise" in repressed memories of satanic ritual abuse and mind control, etc., just as the clients who've come to believe they are "survivors," may point to the the numbers of others who believe the same. [5]

These ritual abuse "survivors" are also encouraged to attend any number of national and international Ritual Abuse Conferences throughout the year (see Byington's website, Child Abuse Recovery), where they can “share their healing journey” on the “often decades-long road to recovery” with a supportive “family” of fellow survivors, “spiritual healers,” and various other allies in the helping professions, including the authors and psychologists and licensed social workers whose legendary books and private residential treatment facilities have created and shaped the contemporary landscape of Ritual Abuse.

The creators of this website argue that the creation of pornographic fiction-marketed-as-nonfiction may be usefully examined as issues of “mental health” (whether as paraphilia or as psychopathy), along with ethics violations and civil and penal crimes (defamation, exploitation, fraud, etc.), given that the books’ and studies’ and therapists’ subjects and clients, as well as many readers among the target audience, are frequently mentally ill (over 1200 recently self-identified in an online "study" as victims of ritual abuse or mind control or both) or victims of actual abuse (be it battery or sexual assault).

We would argue that among the abuses are those perpetrated by the psychologists / authors who benefit from genre—and whose abuses are all-too real, in spite of genre of ritual abuse itself being largely a fraud.

Present civil and criminal law would also seem to suggest that authors of ritual child sexual abuse pornography, however popular, are tip-toeing through some very tender tulips, penning texts that may be generously described as “barely legal” today, especially when the narratives involve the stories/lives of real clients and patients, and when victims’ rights, and particularly those of children — in the court of public opinion, if not in every backwoods courtroom — will trump any claim to First Amendment protection.



[1] Versus the child molester who “authors” his and the victim's true story by means of the physical body. Also, by contrast to CSA Mythomania, in cases of actual abuse the narrative is ordinarily not told for pleasure—and in fact frequently creates strong negative emotions in the storyteller (to say nothing of the reader or hearer of the story). Furthermore, whatever “pleasure” might have been hoped for, at perpetrator’s sentencing, many actual victims report feeling little or no sense of "closure," let alone "pleasure."

[2] In cases of child sexual assault, such fictions may result in prison sentences measured not in years but in decades or, not infrequently, centuries. It's also important to note, that for the author or teller with criminal intent (or intent "merely" to win a child-custody dispute), the storyteller's pleasure is derived from the effect of the story rather than from its telling—which is to say, the author or teller does not derive pleasure from the telling, beyond the pleasure of anticipating the desired effect of gaining custody and/or sending a someone away.

[3] Lest readers mistakenly believe the authors of the present text are for censoring pornography (by which we mean fictional pornography in the traditional sense, rather than fictions presented as nonfiction). As Carl-Michael Edenborg points out, in his brilliant Parapornographic Manifesto (Action Books, 2013),
One of the most provocative aspects of the radical feminist antipornography movement is that its discourses do not always make a distinction between signified and signifier. In the early 1990s, a wall in Stockholm bore the graffiti "Porn is murder." This is an example of how the difference between image and object can be removed. The drawing of a child who is being raped is seen as an abuse of real children; the massacred, ketchup-covered rubber doll in the splatter film Snuff actually is a murdered woman; the victims in Sade's literary fantasies are abused and dead, and therefore these texts are a genuine cause of further rape and murder and ultimately to the destruction of all women. 
The authors of the present text heartily concur with Edenborg's analysis of the pitfalls of failing to distinguish between the signifier and the signified. In cases where the film or visual art -- or text (whether Nabokov's famed Lolita or Urs Allemann's blistering Babyfucker (Les Figues Press, 2010) -- is presented as art or erotica or unabashed porn, we see no difficulties. But in the case of sexual abuse narratives, where "real people" are in fact the signified -- such as Jenny Hill, the very real mentally ill woman at the heart of Judy Byington's fraudulent novel -- things become far more murky indeed.

[4] The numbers stagger the mind: the Jews, the Christians, the Witches, the Muslims, et al, reshaped in allegedly more civilized times as the Communist Purge, the Internment of the "Japs," etc; while today's most popular terms appear to be "insurgents" and "radicals" under the larger category of alleged "terrorists." The general reader interested in the topic of witch-hunting would do well to begin with John Demos' The Enemy Within and Norman Cohn's Europe's Inner Demons. Readers interested in reader more about ritual abuse should begin with Debbie Nathan's definitive text, Satan's Silence: Ritual Abuse and the Making of a Modern American Witchhunt, as well as The Satanism Scare (Richardson, Best, and Bromley, eds.) and Jeffrey Victor's Satanic Panic.

[5] cf. Jeanne Adams, Thomas Michael Ball, Bennett Braun, Neil Brick, Orit Badouk Epstein, Lori Galperin, Wanda Karriker, Martin Katchen, Ellen Lacter, Karl Douglas Lehman, Kee MacFarlane, Pamela and Randy Noblitt, Carl Raschke, Jean M. Riseman, Carol Rutz, Colin A. Ross, Daniel Ryder, Joseph and Rachel Wingfield Schwartz, Mark Schwartz, David Shurter, Valerie Sinason, et al