Footnotes

 

1. Robert M. Stuart, ed., Philosophical Perspectives on Sex and Love (New York, Oxford, Oxford University Press 1995), p. 74.
2. S.I. Hayakawa, Language In Thought and Action, 4th ed. (Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Inc. 1978). Oververbalization “If our intentional orientations are serious, therefore, we can manufacture verbally a whole system of values...out of connotations informative and affective...That is to say, once the term is given, we can, by proceeding from connotation to connotation, keep going indefinitely.” p. 251.
3. Gail Pheterson, The Prostitution Prism (Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 1996), pp. 30-36.
4. Language In Thought and Action, p. 24. Also see the section on the process of abstracting, “...leaping a huge chasm: from the dynamic process...to a relatively static idea...” p. 154.
5. Jody Freeman in Applications of Feminist Legal Theory to Women’s Lives: Sex, Violence and Reproduction, D. Kelly Weisberg editor, (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1996) says “Radical feminists say that prostitution is not a harmless, “private” transaction but a powerful means of creating, reinforcing, and perpetuating the objectification of women through sexuality.” p. 242.
6. Ibid., 194.
7. Prostitutes are generally described in these writings as being women. They are by far the largest group by gender of all prostitutes. Men and transgenders, of course, are also prostitutes, but the focus here is on women. Some of these nine categories can also be applied to men and transgenders.
8. By flaunting society’s values and behaving immorally, a person believes he or she is getting away with something, but they are not. They become less valuable people. See Robert Nozick, “Philosophical Explanations,” (Belknap Harvard, 1981), p. 409.
9. Feminist Legal Theory, p. 248.
10. Kathleen Barry, The Prostitution of Sexuality (New York and London: New York University Press, 1995), p. 30. “Distancing can also be thought of as the result of the abuse caring people experience as they withdraw from a society that takes their kindness as a sign of weakness. Distancing may also result because every time a person gets socially intimate he or she has no defenses to keep from being exploited by that closeness.
11. Terri Goodsen coined the phrase in reference to her relationship to prostitution and reasons why she felt some women became prostitutes.
12. Women in the eighth category are described as smart and those in the ninth intelligent. Smart denotes purely optimizing strategies at work in thinking that is self-serving, while intelligence implies to some degree altruistic and non-optimific thinking. The former are in it for the money, because that is where the money is substantial compared with any other career they might choose. The intelligent women are in it for the money but on a higher level of social integration that includes helping other prostitutes and helping each other overcome political and social obstacles.
13. In one study that appears representative of her view of the pervasiveness of violence, 63% of women in a study said they were horribly beaten by their pimps. (The Prostitution of Sexuality), p. 202. Another study by feminist Catharine MacKinnon in The Problems of Pornography, says that only 7.8% of all women have not been sexually assaulted. The pervasiveness of violence and pimping needs to be examined more closely
14. The pathetic fallacy is an informal fallacy in philosophy. If an argument appeals to pity it is considered fallacious. There is a subtle, not exaggerated, sense of this in Barry’s descriptions.
15. Paul Tillich.
16. Call girls, in my opinion, show less of an affinity for involvement in drugs than street girls, while street girls (84%-100%) have at one time or another used heroin. (See Sex Work, p. 202; “life is so hard and painful that it is understandable why they descend deeper into drugs.”) Despite the use of drugs, they are not cons, and do not inordinately get involved in an increasing array of scams.
17. Applications of Feminist Legal Theory To Women’s Lives, p. 192.
18. In The Prostitution of Sexuality, Morris Berman is credited with pointing out “that cultural history is embedded in our bodies,” p. 346 This likely is a reference to genetics, thus the entire problem of oppression is likely to be governed by factors existing on a larger scale.
19. Theodosius Dobzhansky, Mankind Evolving (New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 1962), p. 20.
20. Robert Nozick, Philosophical Explanations (Cambridge, Massachusetts: The Belknap Press of Harvard University, 1981), p. 470.
21. Values in the broad category include marriage, having children, working for a living honestly, and so forth. There is an array of other values more narrowly delineated. Virtue and chastity are values associated with sexual activity. When a person begins to experience sexuality, the inherent power of sexuality to entice, manipulate, and play with other people’s emotions becomes evident. There is so much power implied in sexuality that the
immature usage of it is inevitable. Thus, the lack of chasteness also can imply the game-state that arises when a person cannot deal adequately with the power of sexuality. Sex in this condition degrades, from its higher purpose for mating, having a family, or raising the spirits of humanity by imbuing courtship with a sense of romance, into self-serving expressions of ego-fulfillment.
22. In this respect, a prostitute being conservative with men in her private but not professional life, could be considered a sexually virtuous women given conformity to other virtuous characteristics. Although this appears contradictory, one must remember that the idea of temple prostitution was never construed as a desecration of spirit. Virtue is given an “extensional” characteristic here that gives it first-order qualities (the absence of a game-state) over the more “intensionally” defined words virtue, purity, and chastity, which are not as specific. This is important to note if the argument is to object to women being objectified on such a high pedestal of virtue. Virtue knows no gender. What applies to women applies to men equally.
23. Applications of Feminist Legal Theory to Women’s Lives, p. 211. The relationship between the public and professionals is that both treat each other for their own ends. The client needs sex and the prostitute needs money. Experienced men and experienced prostitutes sometimes share a rapport
that goes unnoticed by any research.
24. Carole Pateman, The Sexual Contract (Stanford, California: Stanford University Press, 1995), p. 202.
25. Applications of Feminist Legal Theory to Women’s Lives, p. 189.
26. Stevi Jackson and Sue Scott, eds., Feminism and Sexuality: A Reader (New York: Columbia University Press, 1996), p. 70.
27. Evelina Giobbe in The Sexual Liberals and the Attack on Feminism.,
Dorchen Leidholdt and Janice G. Raymond eds. (New York and London: Teachers College Press), p. 68.
28. Extrapolations from Applications of Feminist Legal Theory to Women’s Lives, p. 191.
29. Jaggar in Applications of Feminist Legal Theory to Women’s Lives, p. 191.
30. Ibid., p.191.
31. Simone de Beauvoir “believed that one of the keys to a woman’s liberation is economic, a point she emphasized in her discussion of the independent woman.” Rosemarie Tong, Feminist Thought: A Comprehensive Introduction (Boulder and San Francisco: Westview Press, 1989), p. 211.
32. Ibid., p. 192.
33. Class distinctions are what Marx objects to in his complex theory of

economic determinism. But without such divisions of labor, productivity
would be low and the quality of life diminished, except perhaps in small island nations in warm climates where the struggles of day to day survival might be less than in the colder regions. “Among all the forms of social organization which history has to show, there are very few which appear to be really free from oppression; and those few are not very well known. All of them correspond to extremely low level of production, so low that the division of labor is pretty well unknown, except between the sexes, and each family produces little more than its own requirements.” Simone Weil, Oppression and Liberty (Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 1955), pp. 61-62.
34. Ibid., p.161.
35. The Sexual Contract, p. 201.
36. Ibid., p. 191.
37. Robert Nozick, in an article by Alison M. Jaggar, in The Philosophy of Sex, p. 264.
38. In Oppression and Liberty, Weil speaking of Marx, “In the factory,” he writes in Capital, “there exists a mechanism independent of the workers, which incorporates them as living cogs...The separation of the spiritual forces that play a part in production from manual labor,” p.41.
39. Feminist Thought, p. 71.
40. “Radical feminist writings are consciously deemed inseparable from group tactics, rather than as a discrete contribution to an abstract philosophical position.” Imelda Whelehan, Modern Feminist Thought (Washington Square, New York: New York University Press, 1995), p. 73.
41. Ibid., p. 86.
42. “Radicals appear to pride themselves on being notoriously difficult to define, and this is in part an effect of their commitment to denying that one voice can speak for the many.” Modern Feminist Thought, p. 70. Remaining obscure also has the added advantage of wearing down one’s opponents as the logic is intentionally diffuse and difficult to understand. Some radical feminists are difficult to understand because they use specific words inappropriately. The degrading and oppressive nature of rape is not the same as willingly entering into a contract to have sex with someone for money. Theoretically they make a case that it is, but it is a weak one.
43. Modern Feminist Thought, p. 80.
44. Women are also exploiters of other women. Human passions and greeds are not endemic to one sex or the other. If a woman of questionable morality wants something badly enough she is likely to exploit any easy source that can satisfy her desire, whether it is a man or a woman.
45. “Prostitution is not a harmless “private” transaction but a powerful means of creating, reinforcing, and perpetuating the objectification of women through sexuality.” Applications of Feminist Legal Theory to Women’s Lives, p. 242.
46. Alison M. Jaggar in The Philosophy of Sex, p. 270.
47. Applications of Feminist Legal Theory to Women’s Lives, p. 194.
48. Ibid. p. 20. Also, “Genetic or social change may also result from interplay between an organism or a culture on the one hand and the environment on the other.” Mankind Evolving, p. 15. “Culture is, however, an important instrument of adaptation which is vastly more efficient than the biological processes that led to its inception and advancement.” Mankind Evolving, p. 20.
49. Mankind Evolving, p. 15.
50. F. Osborn in Mankind Evolving, p. 13.
51. Ibid., p. 18.
52. Once the word “degrading” is used properly in a moral context it has more meaning and relevance to feminist arguments.
53. Modern Feminist Thought, The home is the crucial site of a woman’s oppression, p. 80.
54. Easily accessible through mainstream publications and by broadcasts where most men would see advertisements for prostitutes.
55. Men also exploit other men in mean and insensitive ways. The competitions can be fierce and underhanded, leaving a man returning to the home sensitized to the slightest annoyance. Emotions that would not ordinarily get out of hand in the home may have been inspired by conflicts with other men in the workplace.
56. The prostitute might be viewed as a married woman’s natural competitor. If conditions in society unfairly thrust some people to the bottom where their only recourse to survive is to sell themselves, then the malefactions of society produce prostitutes who turn out to be extremely successful competitors with married women in gaining the attention and resources of men. The exploitation and greed that cause some types of prostitution is a reflection of a general climate of immorality that prevails in the world, causing people in all walks of life to exploit one another. Some humans simply cannot compete, nor are they perhaps aware of the intensity of civil strife that ultimately determines a person’s rank and occupation in society. Some women will always have a predilection for sexual activity for hire. Those that do so for political and economic reasons will continue to do so until the moral climate of the society improves, granting every citizen a full and fair chance to compete for jobs and educational opportunities. The radical feminist feels threatened by the prostitute for ostensibly political reasons. But the fact remains, the prostitute is willing to do what so many married women may be unable to, and that is perform exotic sex.
57. The concept of personal and social degradation is an extremely complex subject. Degenerative behavior requires closer consideration than it is given here and is better described in a larger writing. While lending some consideration to the radical feminists’ position, in any analysis of social degradation, one must also take into account the degrading effect dividing men against women for the benefit of some political viewpoint. Degradation can be immediate, or a slowly evolving process. It can be viewed as a personal problem, or a social one. For example, on a personal level, a virtuous woman is not degraded by the presence of immoral women. If anything, the circumstance complements the virtuous woman because those around her behave in a less sophisticated way. However, she can be afflicted in a variable way by the presence of immorality in her life, but not degraded. On a social level, it could be said that while the presence of any degrading actions is undesirable, its effects address men and women equally by keeping civilization operating on a lower evolutionary plane.

 

 

 

 


Bibliography
Barry, Kathleen. The Prostitution of Sexuality. New York and London, New York University Press, 1995.
Delacoste, B. Frederique, and Priscilla Alexander, eds. Sex Work. Cleis Press, 1987.
Dobzhansky, Theodosius. Mankind Evolving. New Haven and London, Yale University Press, 1962.
Dwyer, Susan. The Problems of Pornography. Wadsworth Publishing Company, 1995.
Hayakawa, S.I. Language In Thought and Action, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 4th ed., 1978.
Leidholdt, Dorchen and Janice G. Raymond, eds. The Sexual Liberals and the Attack on Feminism. New York and London: Teachers College Press, 1990.
Nozick, Robert. Philosophical Explanations. Belknap Harvard, 1981.
Pateman, Carole. The Sexual Contract. Stanford, California: Stanford University Press, 1992.
Pheterson, Gail. The Prostitution Prism. Amsterdam University Press, 1996.Russell, Letty M. and J. Shannon Clarkson, eds. Dictionary of Feminist Theologies. Louisville, Kentucky: Westminster John Knox Press, 1996.
Stuart, Robert M., ed. Philosophical Perspectives on Sex and Love. New York, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 1995.
Tong, Rosemarie. Feminist Thought: A Comprehensive Introduction, (Boulder and San Francisco: Westview Press, 1989).
Weil, Simone. Oppression and Liberty. Amherst: The University of Massachusetts Press, 1973.
Weisberg, D. Kelly, ed. Applications of Feminist Legal Theory To Women’s Lives: Sex, Violence, Work, and Reproduction. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1996.
Whelehan, Imelda. Modern Feminist Thought: From Second Wave to ‘Post-Feminism.’ Washington Square, New York: New York University Press, 1995.

 

 

Home Page

Existential Feminism

Radical Feminism

Liberal Feminism

Marxist Feminism

Socialist Feminism

Moral Considerations

Theoretical View of the Degrading
Nature of Prostitution

Figurative, Not Actual Degradation

Summary

Footnotes