Accepted Paper:

From clients to "friends" or "lovers": Brazilian sex workers coping with the economic crisis in Spain  

Author:

Adriana Piscitelli (State University of CampinasUNICAMP)

Paper short abstract:

In this paper I analyze the connection between precarity and intimacy considering how Brazilian sex workers have coped with the economic crisis in Spain, shifting their preferences from increasingly scarce and impoverished clients to "friends", "lovers" or "men who help."

Paper long abstract:

In this paper I consider the connections between increased precarity and intimacy, taking into account how Brazilian sex workers have coped with the economic crisis in Spain. The analysis focuses on the effects of the shift of preferences in sexual and economic exchanges of migrants who consider themselves professionalized prostitutes. In a recent past they privileged prostitution above other possible interchanges. Yet, in the context of the economic crisis, they began to prefer the economic and sexual exchanges they could establish with "friends", "lovers", or "men who help" to those with increasingly scarce and impoverished clients. Drawing on multi-sited ethnographic research carried out since 2004 with Brazilian migrants in Spain, I look at the economic, affective and subjective implications of this shift. Analyzing the trajectories of two Brazilian women and a transvestite who I have accompanied for ten years in Barcelona, I consider how the economic reconfigurations caused by the crisis in Spain lead to an alteration of sexual economies and the intimate dimensions of life.

Panel P064
Mobility, precarity, and the activation of kinship and intimacy [ANTHROMOB]