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I Heart Sex Workers: A Christian Response to People in the Sex Trade Paperback – March 15, 2013
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A few things you need to know about this book right away. It's not about sex trafficking or slavery, and it's not about victimization. It's not even about feminism or the "powerless" women who are taken advantage of by "powerful" pimps and johns. In fact, it would be a good idea to empty yourself of any notion you may have about the sex trade and how you think this book may approach the subject.
It's very likely that Scholl will demolish those notions anyway. She successfully pulls back the curtain and shows that the reality of sex work bears little to no resemblance to the illusion most people, especially Christians, have about it. Scholl examines the many factors --- some expected, some unexpected, some surprising --- that lead women into prostitution as well as the reasons why they stay. She also offers a thoughtful, and again surprising, analysis of why legalization will ultimately hurt sex workers while decriminalization may help many of them to make the decision to leave the lifestyle. The issues she discusses are the kinds of things that most people would never associate with sex work, and she occasionally writes about them in such detail that those who are squeamish about sex talk may consider a few sections to be uncomfortable to read.
Scholl's discussion of "harm reduction," which she describes as minimizing the harmful effects of (in this case) sex work, is brilliant.Read more ›
Scholl doesn't let sanctimonious moralism get in her way from any direction. She points out a variety of reasons why sex work might be the best choice for certain people, but she also points out the real harm that can come from engaging in sex work. Her concern is increasing the agency and minimizing the harm for every individual she works with. In some cases that might mean leaving sex work entirely, but in others it might mean just increasing the frequency of condom use, or helping an individual slowly take control of their drug usage. The book steers resolutely away from big-picture solutions toward direct harm-reduction in each circumstance.
This might all sound very pragmatic. If you're inclined to view that positively you'll say she's a realist. If you're inclined to see that as a negative you'll say she compromises her values, but I think you'd be wrong in both cases. The thread running through her book, exposed by her title, is that she deeply cares, emotionally and theologically. She is not merely being strategic, she is being Christlike - and I mean that in the most literal sense. In this work, she is like Christ.
One of the most useful aspects of this book is its straightforward simplicity.Read more ›
Please read this book!
Ms. Billie McIntire, M.A.
Sex Work Alliance and Network(ing) (SWAN) Colorado
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book is indispensable reading if you wish to understand harm reduction for sex workers from a liberal Christian’s perspective. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Ecualegacy
I like knowing how people on the front lines think about intractable issues. For example, if a doctor is one of the world's foremost cancer docs, what vitamins does she or he take... Read morePublished 20 months ago by Allegra Jordan