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Chapter 12 Prostitution, Pornography, & the Sex Trade

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1 Chapter 12 Prostitution, Pornography, & the Sex Trade
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2 Myth or Fact? Pornography tends to be popular in communities where there is much hostility toward women. Prostitution is one of the categories of crime in which women far outnumber men as perpetrators. Fact Myth

3 Variety in Human Sexuality
A Cross Cultural View Sexual attitudes and behavior vary from culture to culture. There is also variety in sexual behavior within the same culture. Sexual Standards in the U.S. Today people are more divided than in the past over premarital sexuality. Sexual behavior is very sensitive and therefore information about it is not always easy to get.

4 What accounts for the changes in sexual behavior?

5 Prostitution Prostitution
sexual activity in exchange for money or goods, in which the primary motivation for the prostitute is neither sexual nor affectional. Categories of prostitutes range from streetwalkers to call girls to male prostitutes. Precise numbers on the incidence of prostitution are impossible to obtain.

6 Arguments For Legalizing Prostitution
Those that favor legalizing prostitution argue that it is a “victimless crime” and that what goes on between consenting adults in private should not be a matter for law enforcement. Problems related to illegal prostitution include the spread of sexually transmitted diseases, and prostitution falling under the control of organized crime.


8 Arguments Against Legalizing Prostitution
Critics of legalization argue that legalizing prostitution does not stop the health and crime problems associated with prostitution but simply pushes it into illegal trade. Other critics argue that legalized prostitution does create victims: the prostitutes themselves.

9 Who Becomes a Prostitute?
An important step in becoming a prostitute is knowing others who are involved in the trade. The majority of female prostitutes are between 17 and 24 years of age who often have had early and frequent promiscuous sexual experiences. Male prostitutes tend to come from either a peer-delinquent subculture or the gay subculture. Leaving prostitution can be difficult.

10 Pornography Pornography describes “sexually ‘explicit’ writings, still or motion pictures and similar products designed to be sexually arousing.” Tremendous controversy surrounds what is and what is not pornographic and what, if anything, should be censored. Debates also exist as to whether there is a link between pornographic materials and violence.

11 Pornography & the Law Material must meet 3 conditions established by the U.S. Supreme Court case Miller v. California (1973) to be considered obscene. 1. The average person applying community standards considers the material as a whole to appeal to prurient interests. 2. The material depicts sexual conduct, specifically defined by state or federal law, in a patently offensive way. 3. The work lacks serious artistic, literary, political or scientific value.

12 The Functionalist Perspective
Deviant behaviors, such as prostitution and pornography, continue to exist because they perform important functions for society, such as establishing the acceptable morality for society providing for a wider array of sexual outlets and services in a society that places restrictions on what is acceptable sexual conduct

13 The Conflict Perspective
The sex trade is closely related to issues of social inequality and the exercise of power. At one level the sex trade represents gender inequality in a patriarchal society. At another level the sex trade relates to poverty and economic inequality.

14 The Interactionist Perspective
Sexual deviance has to do with varying definitions of reality and with the impact of labeling and stigmatization on self-concept and self-worth. The result is a competition of “moral entrepreneurs” with each trying to impose its definition of what is moral on society as a whole.

15 Future Prospects Social policy regarding many forms of sexual behavior remains highly controversial. Disapproval of various forms of sexual behavior tends to be greater when force is involved, or when one partner is not an adult. Research fails to show that prostitution and pornography, in and of themselves, are detrimental to society. Problems arise from the hostile reactions that some groups have toward these forms of sexual expression.

16 Future Prospects

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