Let’s Talk About….Sex Work?

by Brittany Robinson

My interest in this topic stems from a class I took during my senior year of college called Sexual Revolutions. My professor was an amazing woman who challenged us to look at sex work as a product of our culture, not just something we can condemn or advocate under the idea that this form of work (which Ronald Weitzer in Sex for Sale says includes stripping, prostitution, peep-shows, phone sex operators, etc (1)) just emerged without our consent or awareness of it.  From this, I thought “What about sex work within my culture?”  I am an African-American woman from the South, and I have always heard women in my community treat sex as a “secret,” so when some of them learned I was taking a class that examined sex work, they wanted to know one thing: why I would feel comfortable as a Black woman discussing sex work when we have a history of sexual exploitation.  Because of their inquiries and my own, I came to formulate the argument presented below. Continue reading