Sex Workers Unite: A History of the Movement from Stonewall to SlutWalk

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Beacon Press, Jan 7, 2014 - Social Science - 272 pages
A provocative history that reveals how sex workers have been at the vanguard of social justice movements for the past fifty years while building a movement of their own that challenges our ideas about labor, sexuality, feminism, and freedom
Fifty countries treat sex work as a legitimate job, and it has been legalized (with restrictions) in eleven others. The United States is one of the few industrialized nations that continues to criminalize prostitution and, as Melinda Chateauvert reveals, these laws have put sex workers at risk. Documenting five decades of sex-worker activism, Sex Workers Unite puts prostitutes, hustlers, call girls, strippers, and porn stars in the center of civil rights struggles. Although their presence has largely been ignored, sex workers have here been recast as key activists in struggles for gay liberation, women’s rights, reproductive justice, union organizing, and prison abolition. By foregrounding labor, Chateauvert reframes sex work as work and argues that sex-worker rights are ultimately human rights.

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User Review  - EmScape - LibraryThing

A very well-researched and detailed history of the campaign many have engaged in over the years to decriminalize, destigmatize and legitimize the sex industry. Great strides have been made, but the ... Read full review

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User Review  - pjasion - LibraryThing

As soon as you mention the word – SEX - judgments, biases, predispositions, close mindedness, aversion and even total disgust still rear their ugly head. Take all of that and then write a book about ... Read full review



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About the author (2014)

Activist Melinda Chateauvert has been involved in many grassroots campaigns to change policies and attitudes about gender and antiviolence, sex and sexuality, race and rights. She is undergraduate studies director in the African American Studies Department at the University of Maryland at College Park, where she teaches courses on political movement organizing, the civil rights movement, and gender and sexuality.

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