This image is the cover for the book Legalizing Prostitution

Legalizing Prostitution

While sex work has long been controversial, it has become even more contested over the past decade as laws, policies, and enforcement practices have become more repressive in many nations, partly as a result of the ascendancy of interest groups committed to the total abolition of the sex industry. At the same time, however, several other nations have recently decriminalized prostitution.

Legalizing Prostitution maps out the current terrain. Using America as a backdrop, Weitzer draws on extensive field research in the Netherlands, Belgium, and Germany to illustrate alternatives to American-style criminalization of sex workers. These cases are then used to develop a roster of “best practices” that can serve as a model for other nations considering legalization. Legalizing Prostitution provides a theoretically grounded comparative analysis of political dynamics, policy outcomes, and red-light landscapes in nations where prostitution has been legalized and regulated by the government, presenting a rich and novel portrait of the multifaceted world of legal sex for sale.

Ronald Weitzer

Ronald Weitzer is Professor Emeritusof Sociologyat George Washington University. He is the author of Legalizing Prostitution: From Illicit Vice to Lawful Business, co-author of Race and Policing in America: Conflict and Reform, and editor of Sex for Sale: Prostitution, Pornography, and the Erotic Dancing.

New york University Press