Selling Sex in the Reich: Prostitutes in German Society, 1914-1945

Paperback | May 26, 2012

byVictoria Harris

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Selling Sex in the Reich focuses on the voices and experiences of prostitutes working in the German sex trade in the first half of the twentieth century. Victoria Harris develops a nuanced picture of the prostitutes' backgrounds, their reasons for entering the trade, and their attitudestowards their work and those who sought to control them, as well as of their clients and the wide variety of other players within the wider prostitute milieu. Public responses to the issue of prostitution are revealed through the motivations of the law enforcement agencies, social workers, anddoctors who increasingly attempted to manage and contain prostitutes' movements and behaviour and to categorize them scientifically as a group. Prostitution can help recast our understanding of sexuality and ethics, teaching us much about how German society defined itself through its definition of who did not belong within it. In addition, common conceptions of the relationship between the type of government in power and official attitudestowards sexuality are challenged. For, as Harris shows, the prevalent desire to control citizens' sexuality transcended traditional left-right divides throughout this period and intensified with economic and political modernization, producing surprising continuities across the Wilhelmine, Weimar,and Nazi eras.

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Selling Sex in the Reich focuses on the voices and experiences of prostitutes working in the German sex trade in the first half of the twentieth century. Victoria Harris develops a nuanced picture of the prostitutes' backgrounds, their reasons for entering the trade, and their attitudestowards their work and those who sought to control...

Victoria Harris is a Research Fellow in History at King's College, Cambridge, where she also teaches and supervises topics in Modern European History.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:232 pagesPublished:May 26, 2012Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199657793

ISBN - 13:9780199657797

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Table of Contents

PrologueIntroduction: Rescuing the Fallen Woman1. The Prostitute Experience2. The Prostitute Milieu3. The Prostitute and Society4. The Prostitute and the StateConclusion: Towards an understanding of the prostitute experienceBibliographyIndex

Editorial Reviews

"An engaging, readable study...captivating, well-researched... This book should be read by everyone with an interest in modern German social history, gender and womens history, the history of sexuality, and even labour and urban history." --Julia Sneeringer, German History