All entries tagged 'feminism'

Monday, January the 28th, 2008

Through a sequence of events that aren’t particularly significant in themselves, I’ve been pondering the following question: Is a feminist stance in favour of prostitution feasible?

Some reading-up on the matter has unearthed what appears to be a fairly contentious debate (see, e.g., [1]).

In summary, “radical feminists have tended to see prostitution as the ‘absolute embodiment of male patriarchal privilege’ and have called for its outright rejection,” while “pro-sex feminists, often drawing on the writing of sex-workers themselves, see prostitution as a form of erotic labour whose conditions require scrutiny, but which is not inherently incompatible with a feminist stance.”

While I form my own opinions on the matter, I thought it’d be interesting to open-up this topic for discussion.

Suppose the woman enters the profession of her own free will, and is comfortable in separating her private life from her work. Suppose she retains sovereignty in conducting her sexual interactions. Suppose she deems it a viable form of employment—preferable to the low-paid and unsatisfying jobs she’s otherwise found herself in the past.

How far would you need to push such conditionals to become in favour? Or would you stay staunchly against regardless?

[1] “‘Tis Pity She’s a Whore,” Dee Amy-Chinn, Feminist Media Studies 6 (2): pp. 175–190.

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