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Cosmopolitan Sex WorkersWomen and Migration in a Global City$
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Christine B.N. Chin

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199890910

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199890910.001.0001

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“What Is Wrong with Being a ‘Miss’?”

“What Is Wrong with Being a ‘Miss’?”

Transnational Migrant Women and Sex Work in the Twenty-First Century

(p.84) Chapter 4 “What Is Wrong with Being a ‘Miss’?”
Cosmopolitan Sex Workers

Christine B. N. Chin

Oxford University Press

Chapter Four begins with a brief history of prostitution in KL and Malaysian women’s gradual displacement by transnational migrant women sex workers. This is followed by analysis of women from different nationalities, why and how they migrate for sex work, and their views of a largely stigmatized and illegal economic activity. An overwhelming majority of the women consider sex work to be a relatively quicker and less exploitative way (than other kinds of jobs open to them) of earning more income toward an end of improving their socioeconomic positions (that may include gaining an education or vocational skills, establishing a business, financially assisting family members, and/or ‘seeing the world’). The women’s decisions and perspectives are shaped by their understandings and experiences of structural forces, or their social locations in multiple intersecting and mutually constituting nationality, gender, class and racial-ethnic hierarchies.

Keywords:   History of prostitution, Stigmatized work, Structural forces, Women’s social locations, Hierarchies, Nationality, Gender, Class, Race-ethnicity

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