Can Prostitutes Marry? Thai Attitudes Toward Female Sex Workers

Publication Abstract

Peracca, Sara B., John E. Knodel, and Chanpen Saengtienchai. 1998. "Can Prostitutes Marry? Thai Attitudes Toward Female Sex Workers." Social Science and Medicine, 47(2): 255-267.

This study explores popular attitudes towards female sex workers in Thailand by examining the general public's perceptions of a prostitute's ability to marry based on focus group data. The tentative conclusion emerging from our findings that the general public believes sex workers can marry is that a relative lack of severe or lasting social stigma is an important part of a Thai context that facilitates recruitment into prostitution and permits it to persist on a widespread scale. We interpret this conclusion in terms of the broader value system in Thai society. Although our findings are implicitly comparative in nature, a lack of comparable information from other countries on how those who provide commercial sex are viewed by the general population prevents a more definitive conclusion. There is an obvious need for research on this topic as well as on how sex workers view themselves, and how this translates into actual behavior.

Dataset(s): focus group transcripts from the project 'The influence of primary female partners and male peers on male extramarital sexual behavior in Thailand'.

Keywords:
aids

Also Issued As:
Peracca, Sara B., John E. Knodel, and Chanpen Saengtienchai. 1997. "Can Prostitutes Marry? Thai Attitudes Toward Female Sex Workers." PSC Research Report No. 97-389. 4 1997. Abstract.

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