Prostitution State: ITALY 1860-1950 by Mary GibsonProstitution State: ITALY 1860-1950 by Mary Gibson

Prostitution State: ITALY 1860-1950

byMary Gibson

Paperback | April 15, 2000

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Prostitution and the State in Italy traces the history, of prostitution from unification in 1860 to 1915. The Cavour Law of 1860 regulating prostitution was named after Camillo Benso di Cavour, the first prime minister of Italy. Cavour feared the spread of renewal disease into Italian society by soldiers fighting for unification and thus introduced measures he thought would serve as a means of protecting the public. Once peace returned, the laws were retained, since many agreed that they were necessary to insure health, order, and morality.

The law required all prostitutes to register with the police, live in licensed brothels, undergo biweekly health examinations, and be treated in a special hospital if they became infected with venereal disease. This strictly regulated system produced numerous records, which Mary Gibson has used to examine how the laws affected the lives of women engaged in the trade. Gibson builds social profiles of individuals prostitutes that include level of education, marital status, age, and former occupation. Why the Italian government instituted regulation and why the policy persisted in spite of evidence of its falings are questions she addresses.

Early feminists and some democrats protested the laws as being unjust and promoting inequality of the sexes. Twenty-eight years after the law was passed, in 1888, challengers succeeded in getting it liberalized, but their triumph lasted only three years. In 1891 regulation returned and stayed in place until 1958, when the laws were finally overturned. Italy was not alone in formulating new legislation to control prostitution, but it was one of the last of the modern European nations to deregulate it.

Title:Prostitution State: ITALY 1860-1950Format:PaperbackDimensions:288 pages, 9 × 5.9 × 0.6 inPublished:April 15, 2000Publisher:Ohio State University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0814250483

ISBN - 13:9780814250488

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Mary Gibson chronicles Italian prostitution’s history from unification in 1860 to 1915. The Cavour Law of 1860 regulating prostitution came from Italy’s first prime minister, Camillo Benso di Cavour who worried about the spread of venereal disease by soldiers fighting for unification and therefore created legislation to protect the public. After the war, the laws remained, deemed necessary for insuring health, order and morality. The law required all prostitutes to register with police, live in licensed brothels, undergo biweekly health exams and be treated in a special hospital if VD-infected. Prostitution and the State in Italy, 1860-1915 explores how the laws impacted the women in the trade.