In 1996, while promoting the movie Striptease, Demi Moore spoke to Barbara Walters about stripping. Spewing a string of Pagliaisms and self-help-inspired explanations, Moore cheerily spoke about the self-empowerment strippers experience in their work, as opposed to the supposed degradation. It's sort of become par for the course these days for participants in non-mainstream sexual practices, however you define the term, to have their justifications accepted, or at least listened to, by the public at large. While some would say this is an indication of a more tolerant society, Eurydice, the mononymical author of Satyricon USA, doesn't see things so simply. For her, repression—the result of everything from lingering Calvinism to political correctness—helps produce sexual subcultures as far afield as bloodsport lesbians, lecherous priests, and subjects of alien sexual experiments. For her book, she worked her way into these and other groups, at least long enough to cast a few skeptical glances and write a few choice words about each. And while it's sort of refreshing to have a guide who refuses to treat each scene at face value, over the course of Satyricon USA, Eurydice doesn't meet a sexual practice she doesn't in some way disapprove of. A perceptive look at sex in the military and a creepy examination of L.A. necrophiliacs are both effective for different reasons, but elsewhere she seems to have an agenda that makes her not only a subjective observer, but a downright inappropriate one. Of cutting and bloodletting, she writes, "Intellectually, it is no more harmful in my estimation than a daily dose of 90210… What I do find disquieting is that its scars are advertisements for the invisible scars of an increasingly violent and hollow society." Eurydice's swift judgement and willingness to resort to cliches of decadence are truly disquieting. As an outsider, she seems to believe that she can understand her subjects better than they can understand themselves. That's more or less the journalist's task, but her seeming disappointment every time she feels she's unraveled the codes of a subculture—and her equally strong belief that this gives her the right to condescend and correct—weakens her observations. Her reduction of the problem of a sex offender living in a halfway house for sex addicts to a mere matter of faulty thinking borders on comedy. Eurydice does a fine job of making the "frontiers" she explores seem like interesting places, but she also makes them seem like places best described by someone other than a sexual know-it-all who seems determined to impose her own ill-defined ideal of sexual well-being on a world that doesn't want it.