The Bedtrick

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You go to bed with someone you think you know, and you wake up to discover it was someone else.

The surprise bedmate could be another man or another woman, or a man instead of a woman, or a woman instead of a man, or a god, or a snake, your mother or father. No, it’s not a hangover. You, my friend, have experienced what’s known as the Bedtrick. Bedtricks are rife in literature and art, from mythology to movies. Think Leah and Rachel in the Bible, films such as “Some Like It Hot” or “The Crying Game.”

Tales of the Bedtrick can be found in almost every culture, says scholar Wendy Doniger. She’s written the definitive book on bedtricks, lifting the covers on what they have to say about whom we sleep with and how that defines who we are.
(Hosted by Jacki Lyden)


Wendy Doniger, author, “The Bedtrick,” Mircea Eliade professor of the history of religions, University of Chicago Divinity School.