The phenomenon of masochism shows us that men can be drawn to the experiencing of suffering or submission. There is no doubt that suffering, submission, or suicide is the antithesis of positive aims of living. Yet these aims can be subjectively experienced as gratifying and attractive. This attraction to what is harmful in life is the phenomenon which more than any other deserves the name of a pathological perversion. ― (1941a: Escape from Freedom, New York (Farrar and Rinehart) 1941, p. 265.)

Sadism is understood as aiming at unrestricted power over another person more or less mixed with destructiveness; masochism as aiming at dissolving oneself in an overwhelmingly strong power and participating in its strength and glory. Both the sadistic and the masochistic trends are caused by the inability of the isolated individual to stand alone and his need for a symbiotic relationship that overcomes this aloneness. ― (1941a: Escape from Freedom, New York (Farrar and Rinehart) 1941, p. 221.)