The Routledge International Handbook of Sex Industry Research unites 45 contributions from researchers, sex workers, activists, and practitioners who live and work in 28 countries throughout the world.

Focusing tightly on the contemporary state of sex industry research through eight carefully selected themes, this volume sets a clear agenda for future research, activism, and policymaking. Approaching the topic from a multidisciplinary perspective on an expanding field frequently divided by political and ideological conflicts, the handbook clearly establishes the parameters of the field while also showcasing the most vibrant contemporary empirical and theoretical work.

Unprecedented in its global scope, the Routledge International Handbook of Sex Industry Research will appeal to students, researchers, and policy makers interested in fields such as sociology of gender and sexuality; crime, justice, and the sex industry; sociology of work and professions; and sexual politics.

chapter 1|10 pages


BySusan Dewey, Isabel Crowhurst, Chimaraoke Izugbara

chapter 2|16 pages

Sex industry research

Key theories, methods, and challenges
BySusan Dewey, Isabel Crowhurst, Chimaraoke Izugbara

part I|76 pages

The research enterprise

chapter 3|4 pages

The research enterprise

An introduction
BySusan Dewey, Isabel Crowhurst, Chimaraoke Izugbara

chapter 4|9 pages

Selective vision

How disciplinary frames, funding streams, and social policy shape research on sex work
ByDavid S. Bimbi, Juline A. Koken

chapter 5|13 pages

Redesigning the study of sex work

A case for intersectionality and reflexivity
BySamantha Majic, Carisa R. Showden

chapter 6|13 pages

First-person singular(s)

Teasing out multiple meanings in sex work autobiographies
ByTreena Orchard

chapter 7|12 pages

“Sisters of the night” 1

Ethical and practical challenges in researching prostitution among minors in Ghana
ByGeorgina Yaa Oduro, Samuel Otoo, Aikins Amoako Asiama

chapter 8|10 pages

An action research project with sex worker peer educators in Lisbon, Portugal

Collaboration as a key issue for empowerment
ByAlexandra Oliveira

part II|76 pages

Socio-legal practices

chapter 10|4 pages

Socio-legal practices

An introduction
BySusan Dewey, Isabel Crowhurst, Chimaraoke Izugbara

chapter 11|13 pages

Understanding prostitution policy

The challenges to regulating prostitution and how to harness them
ByHendrik Wagenaar

chapter 12|16 pages

Red-light districts in three Belgian cities

ByRonald Weitzer

chapter 14|7 pages

Sex work and the socio-legal space in Nigeria

An update
ByMfon Umoren Ekpootu

chapter 15|12 pages

“Bridge over troubled water”

What sex workers face while embarking on new paths and what helps them leave prostitution in Germany
ByTzvetina Arsova Netzelmann, Elfriede Steffan, Barbara Kavemann

chapter 16|12 pages

Exploring resilience among female sex workers in Johannesburg

ByLawrence Lekau Mamabolo, Khonzi Mbatha

part III|84 pages

Global knowledge flows

chapter 17|5 pages

Global knowledge flows

An introduction
BySusan Dewey, Isabel Crowhurst, Chimaraoke Izugbara

chapter 18|12 pages

Globally circulating discourses on the sex industry

A focus on three world regions
BySusan Dewey, Isabel Crowhurst, Chimaraoke Izugbara

chapter 19|13 pages

Sex trafficking as desaparición [disappearance]

Vernacularised human rights discourses in the Argentine anti-trafficking campaign
ByCecilia Varela

chapter 20|11 pages

Beyond dichotomies

Exploring responses to tackling the sex industry in Nepal
ByShovita Dhakal Adhikari

chapter 21|8 pages

“Something about us for us”

Exploring ways of making research with sex workers in South Africa
ByGreta Schuler, Elsa Oliveira

chapter 22|12 pages

We need to talk about youth prostitution

A story about the demise of youth prostitution in England and Wales
ByJo Phoenix

chapter 23|8 pages

The garotos from Brazil

Xenophobia and the sex trafficking of men
ByGregory Mitchell

chapter 24|13 pages

Re-assembling the feminist war machine

State, feminisms and sex workers in Russia
ByAlexander Kondakov, Daniil Zhaivoronok

part IV|63 pages

Families and intimate relationships

chapter 25|4 pages

Families and intimate relationships

An introduction
BySusan Dewey, Isabel Crowhurst, Chimaraoke Izugbara

chapter 26|14 pages

Understanding the strengths, challenges, and strategies of navigating work life and personal life among sex workers

ByMoshoula Capous-Desyllas, Denice Palacios, Patricia Rivas, Jessica Hernandez

chapter 27|10 pages

From clients to “friends” or “lovers”

Latin American sex workers coping with the economic crisis in Spain
ByAdriana Piscitelli

chapter 28|11 pages

Money talks?

Secrecy and money management in the family affective bonds of women who perform sex commerce in Argentina
BySantiago Morcillo

chapter 29|12 pages

The presence and absence of sex workers’ mothering

ByMarlene Spanger

chapter 30|9 pages

Bridging tourism and prostitution through intimacy

Gay men’s sex tourism in Bangkok
ByYo-Hsin Yang

part V|62 pages


chapter 31|4 pages


An introduction
BySusan Dewey, Isabel Crowhurst, Chimaraoke Izugbara

chapter 32|11 pages

Men in brothels

(Homo)sexuality in Rio de Janeiro’s commercial sexual venues
ByThaddeus Blanchette, Ana Paula da Silva

chapter 33|10 pages

The characteristics and motivations of women who buy sex in Australia

ByHilary Caldwell, John de Wit

chapter 34|14 pages

The “john”

Our new folk devil
ByJerald L. Mosley

chapter 35|13 pages

Men, culture, modernity, and sex work in southeastern Nigeria

ByValentine C. Ezeh, Joy I. Ugwu, Festus E. Ngwu

part VI|62 pages

Third parties

chapter 37|4 pages

Third parties

An introduction
BySusan Dewey, Isabel Crowhurst, Chimaraoke Izugbara

chapter 38|12 pages

Multiplicity and demonic alliances

An anthropological approach to the problem of third parties in prostitution
ByJosé Miguel Nieto Olivar

chapter 39|13 pages

Reflecting on labour exploitation in the sex industry

ByAgata Dziuban, Luca Stevenson

chapter 40|13 pages

Protection through repression?

Theorising everyday police interactions with sex workers in Geneva
ByMira Fey

chapter 41|12 pages

Sex trading in neighbourhood context

Facilitation, violence, and the spectrum of young women’s exploitation
ByLauren Martin

chapter 42|6 pages

Supporting female survivors of sex trafficking in Russia

Ethical challenges and dilemmas faced by a counselling psychologist
ByIrina Churakova

part VII|78 pages

Cultural representations

chapter 43|4 pages

Cultural representations

An introduction
BySusan Dewey, Isabel Crowhurst, Chimaraoke Izugbara

chapter 44|7 pages

Pleasures of the flesh

The image of the prostitute in African literature
ByCaroline Sambai, Peter Simatei

chapter 45|15 pages

Shifting gazes and challenging discourses about sex work and mega-events in Brazil

ByLaura Murray, Ana Paula da Silva, Angela Donini, Cristiane Oliveira

chapter 46|8 pages

Fictions of selling sex

New literatures of queer sex work
ByPatrick Preston

chapter 47|10 pages

State and cross-border sex trade in colonial and post-colonial Nigeria

ByOluwakemi Abiodun Adesina

chapter 48|10 pages

“Down on whores”

Considering representations of Jack the Ripper’s victims
ByMay-Len Skilbrei, Per Jørgen Ystehede

chapter 49|11 pages

Public encounters with whorephobia

Making sense of hostility toward sex worker advocates
ByElena Jeffreys

chapter 50|11 pages

Two women, two murders

Stigmatized media representations of violence against sex workers
ByRachel Lennon, Pranee Liamputtong

part VIII|71 pages


chapter 51|4 pages


An introduction
BySusan Dewey, Isabel Crowhurst, Chimaraoke Izugbara

chapter 52|11 pages

Technology-mediated sex work

Fluidity, networking and regulation in the UK
ByRosie Campbell, Yigit Aydin, Stewart Cunningham, Rebecca Hamer, Kathleen Hill, Camille Melissa, Jane Pitcher, Jane Scoular, Teela Sanders, Matt Valentine-Chase

chapter 53|12 pages

Justice-oriented ecologies

A framework for designing technologies with sex work support services
ByAngelika Strohmayer, Mary Laing, Rob Comber

chapter 54|13 pages

Selling sexual services in the digital age

Flexible work opportunities for the self-employed entrepreneur or precarious unregulated labour?
ByHelen Rand

chapter 55|8 pages

Mobile phone technology

Opportunities and perils for female sex workers in India
BySubadra Panchanadeswaran, Ardra Manasi, Natalie Brooks-Wilson, Shubha Chacko, Michael Brazda, Santushi Kuruppu

chapter 56|7 pages

The ordinary nature of fantasy

Language, gender and sexuality in phone sex work
ByGiulia Selmi

chapter 57|14 pages

“I need $5 million” 1

What sex workers making media tell you that no one else can
ByP.J. Starr, Sonyka Francis