Indhold i specialet: Prostitution
- Kapitel 1: Indledning
- Kapitel 2: Begreber, definitioner og afgrænsninger
- Kapitel 3: Hvad er marginalisering?
- Kapitel 4: Hvad er stigmatisering?
- Kapitel 5: Hvad er social identitet?
- Kapitel 6: Hvem/hvad er prostitution?
- Kapitel 8: Prostitution i historisk perspektiv
- Kapitel 9: Hvordan stigmatiserer det danske samfund kvinder i prostitution i dag?
- Kapitel 10: Hvordan forholder kvinder i prostitution sig til samfundets stigmatisering?
- Kapitel 11: Opsamlende analyseafsnit
- Kapitel 12: Konklusion
- Kapitel 13: Litteratur
- Kapitel 14: English summary
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This thesis revolves around how Danish women in prostitution relate to society’s stigmatizing actions towards their field of work.
This is not a thesis about prostitution in general, but a thesis which focuses on the part of prostitution which is indoors and the women in the field are not neither trafficked women nor street prostitutes with drug problems. Focus is on indoor prostitution and primarily Danish women who chose this as a primary line of work.
The Danish society defines prostitution as being both a creator of and reason to social problems. But prostitution is not illegal in Denmark, although it is not accepted as a legal line of work in terms of work rights. Prostitutes do not have the same rights as other workers.
This affects the research in the field. Most research is paid for and ordered by the Danish social system, and the results are to be used for helping women in prostitution and last but not least, trying to reduce the magnitude of the defined social problem. This means, that the starting point for most research in prostitution is that it is a social problem which needs to be reduced as much as possible. It also means that it focuses on the deviant attributes of the prostitutes instead of what links them with the ordinary, mundane world which they also inhabit. This is what Scambler defines as a ‘paradox of attention’. This neglects a lot of complexity in the general field of prostitution and generalizes women working as prostitutes.
They have different strategies towards coping how society defines their field of work as problematic – they try to change the definition of their working field, try to create a more positive view upon their identities as prostitutes. They try to portrait themselves as happy in their line of work. On the other hand, they also distance themselves from their work and other groups within prostitution, and they often lead lives where they hide their identity as prostitutes.
This has different consequences and also illustrates two different kinds of strategies towards minimizing society’s stigma which is placed upon them as a consequence of their choice of work.
The different ways of guarding themselves against society’s stigma of their work falls into two different categories: the first is what can be defined as ‘classical resistance’: the women in prostitution try to redefine the stigmatizing attributes as positive attributes. The second category is where the women try to either distance themselves from the stigmatizing attributes or try to hide their identity as women in prostitution.
The first set of strategies is illustrating an explicit wish for change – but the foundation on which the resistance springs upon is the same foundation as the rest of the society – this makes change difficult. By resistance founded on an acceptance of society’s values, the resistance ends up being without any effect. As long as the values in society stay the same, so will the stigma of these women.
The second set of strategies has the same consequences. In these examples, the women silently accept the values which lie in society, and try to distance themselves from the stigmas by what Goffman defines as ‘passing’. They try to hide the attributes which lead to stigma.
Both strategies end up accepting society’s definition of prostitution as problematic, even though the first set of strategies actually tries to create a different mindset and values, regarding prostitution.