Wednesday, 4 March 2009

Some articles on commercial sexual exploitation

Reading the cranky feminist post got me thinking about the debates around commercial sexual exploitation vs sex work between feminists. Here are a few articles which have served to partly inform my perpective on the issues. Hope they are of interest to others too.

"The technological innovations and unregulated use of the Internet have created a global medium for men’s sexual exploitation and abuse of women and children. The sex industry has aggressively adopted every new information technology to increase men’s sexual access to women and children. A mutually beneficial relationship exists between the Internet and sex industries. New technologies enable pimps to market women and children in prostitution or related activities, such as online strip shows, sex shows, and commercial voyeurism. The global communications forums have increased the visibility and exposure of women and children being exploited and abused, while conversely, increasing the privacy and communication of the men who exploit and abuse them. These forums normalize men’s exploitative and abuse behaviors. Violence and humiliation are eroticized. The combined experience of using new information technologies, finding a supportive community on the Internet, and having a sexual experience is positively reinforcing and empowering to perpetrators..." Read more here:

"Women experience some form of violence every day of their lives, from sexual assault and casual sexual harassment on the street, to violence at the hands of a partner or colleague, coercion and outdated gender stereotypes at work.Historically, policymakers believe that solutions to this culture of inequality and gender violence can be found by treating these issues separately, and moneyhas been put into initiatives to try and tackle domestic violence, educate children about healthy relationships and improve rape conviction rates. However, this inability to perceive incidents of violence against women as being linked points on a continuous spectrum of violence is damaging women’s lives. Wherever lapdance and strip clubs appear, women’s quality of life deteriorates as a result, with increased reports of rape (Eden, 2003) and increased fear of travelling as a result. (TfL, 2004).." read more here:

"Trafficking and the sex industry are linked in significant ways, especially in the fact that women are trafficked for sexual exploitation into existing sex industries. Trafficking occurs within as well as across national borders, as recognised by the UN CTOC Trafficking Protocol. Women’s inequality with men underpins trafficking, with vulnerability to recruitment and entrapment
linked to the gendered impacts of conflict, economic transition and poverty, coupled with their life experiences (child sexual abuse, domestic violence, poor status).. read more here:

'Men create the demand; women are the supply' read more here:

"..More strip clubs and fewer regulations, along with an apparent total lack of enforcement of the existing ones, means more women potentially being exploited. And, yes, I don’t want to walk past strip clubs or be harassed by their customers, but I’m not the one having to decide whether or not I should give that blow job in order to secure the week’s rent. It’s these women who should be the focus of any campaign to regulate lap dancing, not the privileged nimbys among us..." Debate on the f word blog, read more here:

"..Definition of the sex industry: activities which legally or illegally market and/or sell sexual
services/products in organised form and which make profits from sexual exploitation of people - children, women and men... This exploitation includes organised prostitution,for example escort services, call girls,operation of brothels, street prostitution, internet prostitution, massage
parlours, strip clubs, telephone sex, marriage bureaus, sex tourism, pornography, and sex fairs." extract from European Parliament draft on the consequences of the sex industry in europe. Read more here:

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