Women who buy sex: Converging Sexualities?

Kingston, Sarah orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-9226-1915, Hammond, Natalie and Redman, Scarlett (2020) Women who buy sex: Converging Sexualities? Routledge, London. ISBN 9781138699175

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Official URL: https://www.routledge.com/Women-Who-Buy-Sex-Conver...


Drawing on empirical data from women who pay for sexual services and those who provide services to women, this ground-breaking study is the first of its kind in the UK, detailing the experiences of women who pay for sex in an explicit, direct, prearranged way.

Unlike previous research on clients, which has predominantly focused on men who buy sex or women who engage in romance tourism in places such as the Caribbean, this innovative research offers new and original insights into the demand side of commercial sex. Too often, it is assumed that only men pay for sex from women or other men. Women are assumed to be service providers and are unimaginable as clients. This book therefore offers a radical departure from existing scholarship on commercial sex. In addition, the book examines the experiences of couples who pay for commercial sex, a client group that has received scant investigation. The book explores women’s reasons for their engagement in commercial sex services, their backgrounds and characteristics, their strategies for remaining safe and managing potential risks, as well as their sexual health strategies. The nature of sexual service bookings with women clients is also examined, exploring the types of services women seek, the places where bookings occur and the fess they pay. Finally, the experiences of men, women and trans sex workers who provide sexual services to women are examined.

By drawing on our unique data and comparing it to the literature on men clients, we present our theory ‘Converging Sexualities’. We argue that commercial sex is a site of behavioural convergence and that women clients are behaving in ways that could be described as masculine or feminine. Our study therefore offers new ways to understand sexuality. This book will be of interest to researchers in the field of sexuality, sex work and women’s behaviour.

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