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Children in the Global Sex Trade

ISBN: 978-0-7456-2928-5
224 pages
March 2005, Polity
Children in the Global Sex Trade (0745629288) cover image
This compelling new book explores the complexities of the global child sex industry, but without falling into cliché and melodrama. Julia O'Connell Davidson draws attention to the multitude of ways in which children become implicated in the sex trade, and the devastating global political and economic inequalities that underpin their involvement. She sensitively unpicks the relationship between different aspects of the sexual exploitation of children, including trafficking, prostitution and pornography, at the same time challenging popular conceptions of childhood and sexuality.

This thought-provoking book will be of interest to general readers, and to students taking a range of courses, such as gender studies and childhood studies, and courses on sexuality and globalisation.

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Acknowledgements.

Introduction.

1. Beyond Contract? Dualist Legacies, Late-Modern Anxieties and the Sanctity of the Child.

Modernity, Contract and the Public/Private Binary.

The Pursuit of Equality and Late-Modern Anxieties.

The Sanctity of the Child.

Connections Imperilled.

The Impossibility of Children in the Sex Trade.

2. Prostitutes, Children, and Slaves.

The Anomaly of Prostitution.

International Debates on Prostitution: Division and Consensus.

The Child as Object.

The Variability of Prostitution.

Slavery and Freedom.

Unfree Prostitution in Context.

3. On Child Prostitutes as Objects, Victims and Subjects.

Poverty Plus?.

Factoring in Other Forms of Oppression.

Children as Agents.

Boundary Troubles Revisited.

Victims of Childhood?.

4. Child Migration and 'Trafficking'.

What is 'Trafficking'?.

The Politics of 'Trafficking': Part 1.

The Politics of 'Trafficking': Part 2.

'Trafficking' Defined?.

Voluntary/Forced and Adult/Child Dualisms Revisited.

Continuums and Impermanence in Prostitution.

Global Subjects.

Between Grief and Nothing.

5. 'Paedophilia', Pornography and Prostitution.

Paedophilia and Sexual Politics.

The Child, the Paedophile, and Subject-Object Troubles.

Consuming Desire: the Case of Child Pornography.

Paedophilia and Commercially Produced Pornography.

Paedophiles and Prostitution.

Beyond Paedophilia.

6. Children in Mainstream Prostitution: the Problem of Demand.

Who Buys Sex?.

Why Consume Commercial Sexual Services?.

Choosing Children.

Demand for Embodied Labour.

Policy Implications.

7. Child Sex Tourism.

'Paedophiles who Travel Abroad' and Campaigns Against Them.

Blurring the Boundary.

Travel, Sex and Inequality.

The Scene and the Obscene.

Saying 'No to Child Sex Tourism!'.

8. Beyond Binaries.

Redemption Songs.

Re-imagining the Subject and the Social Bond.

Notes.

References.

Index.

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Julia O’Connell Davidson isProfessor of Sociology at the University of Nottingham
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  • Powerful account of the many and varied ways in which children become involved in the sex trade, and the global political and economic inequalities that underpin children's involvement.
  • Skilfully tackles difficult questions about phenomena such as child prostitution, child pornography, and sex trafficking.
  • The book represents an original and compelling contribution to a complex subject by a leading author.
  • Likely to attract interest inside and outside academia, and have strong appeal to scholars and upper-undergraduate students taking courses in the sociology of childhood, sexuality, gender studies, globalisation, social work and social policy.
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"O'Connell Davidson moves us beyond the horror and outrage of children in the global children in the global sex trade to ask some more fundamental questions about children's relationsips with adults. Challenging popular conceptions of sex abuse and victimisation, this brave, intelligent and thought-provoking book demands our attention and concern."
Allison James, University of Sheffield

"This is a brave and powerful book, sizzling with brilliant insights and analysis. Avoiding easy moral and criticisms and challenging feminist views that rigidly separate children and adults, sex and work, O'Connell Davidson offers an original re-examination of the empirical, political and moral meaning of a global sex trade industry. Children in the Global Sex Trade is a must-read for scholars, activists, sex workers and policy-makers."
Steven Seidman, State University of New York at Albany
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