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Contextualizing the Construction and Social Organization of the Commercial Male Sex Industry in London at the Beginning of the Twenty-first Century

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Feminist theories are concerned to analyse how women can transform society so that they are no longer subordinated, by understanding how patriarchal relations control and constrict them. (Abbott and Wallace, 1997: 284) Feminisms start from the position that women are oppressed within a society, which is patriarchal and socially constructed within knowledge which is malestream. This traditionally defines men such that they are rendered subordinate, within a social world constructed by men. Feminisms are engaged with making transparent patriarchal constructs, and illuminating the 'spaces' within which women-realities can become more visible. This paper presents research undertaken by two key services working with male sex workers in central London. The insights gained from this research are discussed, as they allow comparison between the traditionally subordinate position of women and the contextual experiences of the 'hidden' population of male sex industry workers. It demonstrates, that like women, for male sex workers, hegenomic and heterosexist constructs ensure that they also occupy a subordinated position within society.
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Keywords: CONTROL; ECONOMICS; MALE SEX INDUSTRY; OBJECTIFICATION; PATRIARCHY; SOCIAL CONSTRUCTION

Document Type: Original Article

Publication date: 01 September 2002

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