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Neon WastelandOn Love, Motherhood, and Sex Work in a Rust Belt Town$
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Susan Dewey

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780520266902

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520266902.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 23 July 2021

Feminized Labor and the Classed Body

Feminized Labor and the Classed Body

Chapter:
(p.29) Two Feminized Labor and the Classed Body
Source:
Neon Wasteland
Author(s):

Susan Dewey

Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520266902.003.0002

This chapter addresses the feminization of poverty and concomitant pervasive sexualization of femininity evident in almost all spheres of life in the United States. With the advent of deindustrialization, increased poverty, and lack of formal-sector employment resulted in greater numbers of women in the sex industry. Sex workers came to inhabit a social category that positioned them in awful need of state control and assistance. Following this, it describes the lives of women workers at Vixens who are said to fill culture-specific roles by dancing in front of all-male audiences in exchange for money. It states that American erotic dance practices resulted from cultural contact between diverse communities and elaborate intersections of history, power, and difference in the construction of erotic subjectivity. Finally, it emphasizes that what women experience at Vixens is inextricably linked to the systematic devaluation of women's labor and the pervasive sexualization of femininity.

Keywords:   feminization of poverty, sexualization, deindustrialization, sex industry, culture-specific roles, erotic subjectivity

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