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“No Matter Which Socio-legal Regime is Put into Place, People Continue to Sell and to Buy Sex Wherever They Can”: A Comparative Analysis of the Relationship Between Prostitution Laws and Discourse

Ziegel, Achinoam

This research study explores how prostitution laws correspond with the discourse surrounding sex work by applying the terminology of the academic dispute and legal framing on the way it is socially discussed. The examination of the public discourse was conducted by analyzing the narratives and portrayals of prostitution as they appear in the news media in three cities, each of which is subjected to a different legal regime: New York (criminalization of prostitution), Tel Aviv (decriminalization of the sexual transaction), and Vancouver (criminalization of the purchase). The results of this research indicated that different legal approaches, and their degree of regulation, may influence the extent and sense of urgency demonstrated in the public discourse. However, highly limited congruence was identified between the notions that underlie two of the three examined cities. Consequently, this research recommends further investigation on the effect of prostitution laws on the applicable society in order to provide a deeper and broader groundwork for addressing the complexities and needs of this phenomenon.

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More Information

Academic Units
Institute for the Study of Human Rights
Thesis Advisors
Reich, Adam Dalton
Degree
M.A., Columbia University
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