Ron Weitzer, Professor of Sociology to Present “Europe’s Legal Red-Light Districts: Comparing Different Models and Distilling Best Practices” at City, Society and Space Workshop

By , October 16, 2013 10:46 pm

Please join us to hear Ron Weitzer, Professor of Sociology at George Washington University, present his paper “Europe’s  at the Workshop on City, Society and Space, Thursday October 24, 4-5:20, Social Science Research Building, Room SS 401.  Lara Jansen, Department of Sociology, will serve as the discussant after the talk.  Then, we will open for questions and discussion.  Pizza will be served.

Co-Sponsored by the Center for the Study of Gender and Sexuality.

Please email Theresa Anasti at for an advance copy of the paper.


Research on modern red-light districts is deficient. Centered largely on street prostitution zones and nations where prostitution is illegal, this literature gives insufficient attention to settings where red-light districts consist of indoor venues that are legal and regulated by the authorities. Using classic Chicago School writings on vice districts as a point of departure, the paper examines the physical structure and social organization of three red-light zones. The comparative analysis identifies major differences in the social ecology of the settings, which are explained by (1) the distinctive ways in which each municipal government manages its respective red-light district and (2) the contrasting social backgrounds and political capital of the population residing in the vicinity of each district. Policy implications are briefly discussed.


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