Humiliation is seemingly one of the more visible activities in leathersex (aka BSDM) play. It is a subset of D&S role-play. It is also a form of play which often sparks negative comment from outside observers.

Seemingly trivial (and perhaps canonical) forms of humiliation - e.g. "On your knees you miserable WORM!" - have achieved cliche status. A well known leather educator and practitioner, Midori* has suggested that humiliation can be (mis)used to attack the core values of the bottom or submissive In which case on-target humiliation could do real damage.

Midori also suggests that humiliation can be targeted to get right in amongst the key places where the bottom has fears or esteem issues (s)he wishes to work on. Often on surviving such a confrontation in a loving and consensual context, the effect may be a freedom from something that once was a blockage.

Both practitioners and critics observe that humiliation play is a place fraught with hazards. It is a controversial subject within the leather scene - with good reason - and an arena for powerful exchange.

* Midori discusses her art at