Sex Work | Philosophy Tube

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Lutnick and Cohan, “Criminalization, legalization or decriminalization of sex work” in Reproductive Health Matters 2009
Kollontai, Prostitution and Ways of Fighting It
Gentleman, “Laura Lee: ‘It’s now far more difficult to stay safe,” in The Guardian
MacKinnon and Dworkin, Points Against Postmodernism
Shane, “”Getting Away” with Hating It” in Tits and Sass
Cook-Martin, “The Future of Migration” in Public Books
Bindel, “Prostitution is Not a Job,” “Why Prostitution Should Never Be Legalised,” “My work as a prostitute led me to oppose decriminalisation.”
Mac & Smith, Revolting Prostitutes: The Fight For Sex Workers’ Rights (Verso, 2019)
Agustin, Sex at the Margins: Migration, Labour Markets, and the Rescue Industry (Zed Books, 2007)
Marte Mesna interviewing May-Len Skilbrei, “Mixed Signals in Nordic Prostitution Policy,” in Kilden
Skilbrei and Holmström, Prostitution Policy in the Nordic Region: Ambiguous Sympathies
O’Hara, “Why Carrying Condoms in NYC Might Get You Arrested,” in Vice
Tyler, “10 Myths About Prostitution, Trafficking, and the Nordic Model,” in Feminist Current
Murphy, “The Trouble with Choosing Your Choice” in Feminist Current
Mia Mulder, “Sweden: Heaven and Hell”
Sandel, What Money Can’t Buy: the Moral Limits of Markets (Penguin, 2012)
Nada DeCat, “The Racism of Decriminalisation” in Tits and Sass
PION, Shadow Report to the UN/CEDAW –
Red & Black Leeds, Sex, Work, and Sex Work
Red Umbrella Project, “NYPD Bans Use of Condoms as Evidence in Some Prostitution Arrests”
Ahmed, Strange Encounters”

Hemery, “Strippers Take Aim at Women’s Equality Party Over ‘Sting’ Operation,” in Tits and Sass
Quinlan, “Hundreds of Sex Workers and Allies Lobby to repeal New York’s ‘Walking While trans’ Ban,” in Think Progress
Testimony Generously Provided in Confidence from Sex Workers Around the World
Zahara Stardust, “Protecting Sex Worker Human Rights in Australia,” in International Bar Association

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43 thoughts on “Sex Work | Philosophy Tube

  1. This video has made me decide that the next time I notice someone working the street, I'm gonna ask if I can give them 5$ for a hug, and wish them well on their way.

  2. We could also just guarantee people a right to shelter, food, water, and healthcare so that people aren't forced into sex work when they don't want to be due to economic situations, then we could legalize it.

  3. I think that at the heart of the problem is something that was not talked about in this video: deep down many of us see sex work as some sort of cardinal sin, regardless of wider consequences for anyone. The "exploitation" and "patriarchy" angles are often just smokescreens to make this deeply ingrained distaste/disgust/phobia slighly more rational, while at its core it's a deeply religious/metaphysical thing that stems from our approach to sexuality as such. Unless we tackle that, there's no end to the stigma.

  4. wait, what's 400 pounds to CAD?


  5. and just can not think about sex as another job… I would try almost any job if given the proper training… but to have sex as a job… is almost as being asked to be cut for money, to let people feed me with anything they want for money, to let be kicked in the ass for money… it is just something that go against human nature, can not be compared to any other job even if almost all population all just work for money, there is a limit in how much we are being used for money by the system… still I guess is better to legalize and offer as much help as possible to sexual workers rather that whatever they have now

  6. I like to compare a "sex worker" to another jobs… a musician may perform a free concert to get funds for charity, a english teacher may teach for free in Syria, the baker may give you a free cupcake as a sample before sale it later, an illustrator will allow the exhibition of his illustrations for free to get expusure in a popular magazine, you may get a free SD card when buying your next smartphone… but… will ever a sex worker give his/her service for free?…. reality is not the pretty woman movie, relations between hookers/customer are not like the one of julio robert and richard gere… probabely given the right amount of economic resources or education any person in the world would choose to become a sex worker when opposed to other job, as much as it can be is something to help get quick money for humans beigns in some kind of trouble… or I´m wrong? maybe there is people outside who will give a free blow-job just to make future business…

  7. lets keep playing with imagination… your son/daugther is a 18 years old sex worker, it is suposed to be as any other job because… which difference there is between become a teacher or work in a factory with have sex with a 120kg random guy of 60years old who just happend to have enough money to pay the service because is a landlord or is retired… would you encourage your sons/daugther for that career just for the money?

  8. another vision… lets imagine again sex workers are totally legallized, you are over 60 years old and one day your 18 years old grandchild (femlae/male dont care) arrives to announce so happy that will quit to study for some time and have just signed to work as freelance sex worker… so them you can have a chat with your neighbours about how good he/she performance at anal sex… I´m sure that you (whoever read this lines) will please to listen it since it just another job, such a nice future… maybe is just my moral but I´m not really comfortable about such a future

  9. another thing… lets suppose sex workers are totally legallized, which persons will be more alike to become sex workers? the childrens of the landlord (that landlord he likes to talk about so much) or someone who lacks in education or economic resources that may have just moove from a far land and dont even have a family to get support? … again the rich class feeding on the poors…

  10. there are organizations of doctors who go to africa and give their services there to people who need it for free… but there is not a sex workers organization that go to africa and… give free blowjobs for free to people who need it… you can get a free shampoo sample, or a free foot massage at a spa hotel… but I dont think you would get a free blowjob with a sex worker in order to become her/his customer… that is a metaphor that we used between some very left-progressist and feminist group buddies to think that the prostitution was not something any woman would ever choose by their own free will, therefore should be vanished…

  11. You start to lose me when you argue that sex work is perfectly analogous to acting and it is therefore acceptable labour. My first hang up was comparing sex work, in all its diverse forms to acting a pre-written script where the behaviours of the actors are pre-designated, and touching someone suddenly, sexually would be off the script and therefore no longer part of the contract established through the script. You might say that some sex workers have clearly defined scripts, like strippers for example whom most of the time have no touch policies at the club, but this is by no means true of all sex work. When does a porn script where the director starts to ‘improvise’ become non-consensual, what about when actors are brought in and then instructed to do something wildly different to what they were told they would be doing (hugely commonplace in the porn industry). I’m gonna keep watching but this is where I struggle with the left book whip on sex and porn generally

  12. My fundamental issue with how the establishment views sex workers is how an entire global marketing industry can use sex as one of its most powerful tools to sell products and make money, and that is completely okay to the point of consumers worshiping those products using sex to sell themselves, but an individual monetizing their own sexuality is suddenly such a moral problem. We are still in this global delusion that sex is not a consistent part of all of our lives. Someone might claim that sex work is dangerous and unclean, but turn around that weekend and have sex with whoever they want at any time, sometimes after the exchange of things of value like food, drinks, or whatever. In that particular instance, the only difference between a casual date and a sex work transaction is a guarantee. In that way, we are surrounded by sex work all the time that seems to be just fine. All decriminalization would do here is make the exchange safer and more efficient.

  13. I wonder if the money that sex workers living in Nordic System countries make is taxed. Because it'd mean that the state is profiting from someone's sex work. And that'd make state the pimp.

  14. Guess at the beginning for the card trick at the beginning (guess made at 1:09, after several rewatches of the stuff before that but no watches of anything after) is that the footage is just in reverse.

  15. Funnily enough, the theory that "If there is money changing hands, then you can not consent" has the same flaw as Marx's theory of exploitation of the working classes, in that it completely ignores the fact, that trade can only occur, if all participants consent.

  16. Ah, the P question. I think we're spending wayy too much thought into this question when the reality is a lot more simple.
    Prostitution is "Bad" because normal humans have this thing calls "Jealousy". We also gendered animals, we reproduce through sex. Being able to identify who you produce offspring with is important to us. Women who choose to make a living by letting men simulate reproduction with them, are chastised because the women who chose not to, are threatened by the fact that the men they want to copulate with would rather spend time with prostitutes (pretty much the same reason why there are women who feel threatened by sex dolls or sex doll brothels). Men who look down on sex workers are because they do not see these women as someone to mate with, just to vent out their bestial sides.

    Prostitution is an accursed job & people who choose this life are cursed to be shunned by the very people who pays for them.

  17. Kollontai's quote about superiority in the trading of money is interesting. Maybe this is the same reason Karen keeps coming to complain about you at work?

  18. In reference to 8:13, I don't know if anyone will read this but hopefully it will meet a few eyes. In England and Wales "Summary only" offences are NOT offences that do not need to be proven in court. A summary only offence is one that is considered less severe and is only triable in a local magistrates court (as opposed to Crown Court where all the robes, barristers and juries live). The offences that are discussed in this video still need to be proved beyond reasonable doubt (in theory) in order for a conviction to be made and upheld.

  19. The point about disability benefits really hits home. The fact that people are expected to live off of disability benefits here in Ontario Canada is fucking absurd. The most money you can get is actually below the poverty line.

  20. the omnipresence of sex is a problem. "sex work" a part of it. all these strangers attaching me with their sexuality- just think of all the TVseries during the past 30-20 years where everyone is f+ everyone- no reallife friendship takes this…. normalize psychological and emotional disorder and make business of it….

  21. For those of you communists let me explain how money works.

    Work for money is not coercive. Money by definition is just an exchange of labor. If you wanted you could forego all money and go live in the woods alone.

    Thing is, you are shit at it. You can’t hunt. You can’t build a shelter. You can’t create a heating system. And so on.

    But you’re good enough at doing this shitty job. So you do that to earn money to pay people to hunt for you, to build your house and to get heating, etc.

    That is why you are under “wage slavery”. Cuz you have no skill that the people that are good at stuff can want, and you suck so much that you would not survive alone, so you must slave away to at least survive since if it came to nature, you would be naturally selected out.

  22. I don't find myself against sex work but I have some issues with the idea of commoditizing sex in general. As automation increases my concern is more it's just one more issue we have to tackle in this so-called gig economy rather than enacting laws that divide new revenue toward shareholders and not employees. We can see this with the legalization of marijuana across the United States. That being said I'm probably wrong and don't want to see people go to jail for any of this crap.

  23. I actually have desires to integrate a character of sex worker background into one of my hobby writing series (…fanfiction), so this video was actually quite helpful for me to understand the field better. I'd like to say I have an average grasp on sex work due to more anecdotal/personal sources I've come across in my life, but more research never hurts.

    On that note, if anyone in the comments sees this and can provide healthy sources of sex worker information, please send them my way so I can look into it.

  24. I know you mentioned it at the start, that you couldn't speak to enough people to cover all angles, but I really would like if you spoken to someone like Rachel Moran on her experience in the sex industry. She puts across a lot of harsh and difficult things very clearly. I also do find you likening kissing actors on stage to being penetrated by a stranger really very flippant.

  25. Imagine if can't profit from someone else's labour (ie pimping) was illegal regardless if it was sex work labour or any labour.

  26. I’m in New Zealand and I’m a person of colour, so damn…. how am I going to prostitute myself?! I wonder if I can pass as an islander~

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