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Producing the Acceptable Sex Worker considers how sex work is produced in news media narratives, a site where much of the general public draws its understanding of the industry in the absence of lived interaction with it. Taking New Zealand as a case study, this book considers an emerging discourse of acceptability for some sex workers, primarily those who do low-volume indoor work. Their acceptability is established in comparison with other kinds of sex workers, resulting in a redistribution but not a reduction of stigma. The conditions attached to acceptability reflect persistent anxieties aboutsex work: workers who are acceptable must give the impression that the sexual labour of the job is enjoyable and virtually indistinguishable from their personal life, eliding the work involved. Unacceptable workers have existing marginalisations magnified by their association with the industry, with migrant sex workers produced as devious or exploited, and transgender women's involvement with the industry used to deny them the right to public space. The conditions attached to acceptability reveal how neoliberal discourses of choice, desire, authenticity, and personal responsibility inform the formation of sex work in the public eye.

About the Author

Gwyn Easterbrook-Smith is a researcher, lecturer and commentator currently based in Wellington, New Zealand. They have most recently taught at Massey University. They were awarded a PhD in Media Studies from the Victoria University of Wellington in 2018. Their research deals primarily with media representations of the sex industry, with a particular interest in how these operate under New Zealand's legal model of decriminalisation.

Product Details
ISBN: 9781538165140
ISBN-10: 1538165147
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
Publication Date: February 25th, 2022
Pages: 212
Language: English