Thursday, December 12, 2013

A First-Person Perspective on Life in a Brothel

There's a Cato Unbound series on prostitution here. Folks have been sending me links to some of the pieces, particularly the ones that make exploitation arguments. I've been putting off commenting on it partly because the conversation has yet to conclude and partly because Maggie McNeill has already done a smashing job responding to many of the curious a priori claims of exploitation in the upstream pieces. Mostly though it's because I don't really have any practical knowledge of sex work whatsoever. I'm not all that shabby with the econometric analysis of survey data, but I've never opened up a .dta file that had "Prostitute_YN" as one of the dummy variables. Making solid empirical claims is not something I'm prepared to do.

So imagine my surprise to find today's lead Cracked article was on the very subject, and written by an actual former prostitute.


Or if you can't, here's the EE-relevant quote:
Anyone who thinks legal prostitution is a clear case of men exploiting women hasn't watched a 60-year-old investment banker offer $40,000 for a weekend of back-rubs and cuddling. And anyone who thinks what I just described is easy hasn't ever faked a romantic weekend with someone they barely know. Exploitation is a two-way street.
How about that?

How about that, indeed?

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Do you have suggestions on where we could find more examples of this phenomenon?