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Playing the Whore: The Work of Sex Work Paperback – March 11, 2014

4.6 out of 5 stars 132 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Collectively as a society we've got a whole bunch of tangled, warped intuitions and policies towards the exchange of money for sex. Melissa Gira Grant does a remarkable job of rigorously teasing these apart and righteously scrapping those she finds wanting. Her work has been hugely influential in how I think about sex work and outright changed my mind on a number of points. She's a must read.”
—Chris Hayes, All In With Chris Hayes

“An important contribution to debates around sex and work, and deserves to be read by anyone who wants to get beyond tired and damaging understandings of both.”
—Nina Power, author of One Dimensional Woman

“Thoroughly researched, eminently readable...Keeping the focus on ideas instead of autobiography has an impressively unsettling effect, as we're forced to acknowledge the writer's boundaries, and our own voyeurism.”
Village Voice

"Gira Grant is one of the most interesting policy thinkers in the country when it comes to sex work, and this short book introduces and outlines her thinking on the matter.”
—Mike Konczal, Washington Post

“An informative and extremely worthwhile addition to the existing body of literature on sex work.”
—Stoya, adult performer and Vice columnist

“Learn, listen, take heart—this is the real deal.”
—Susie Bright, sex and culture critic, and founder of On Our Backs

“Well-researched and provocative … A vital text on an incendiary topic.”
—Lily Burana, author of I Love a Man in Uniform and Strip City

“Gira Grant weaves her way through sanctimony and hypocrisy with wit, eloquence, insight, and a dose of necessary outrage.”
—Laura Kipnis, author of How to Become a Scandal

“Makes precisely clear that a culture that polices, silences and marginalizes women who sell sex is a culture that cares nothing about women. Period.”
—Janet Mock, author of Redefining Realness

“As self-appointed saviors like Nicolas Kristof command mainstream media attention for their crusade on behalf of trafficked women, Melissa Gira Grant provides a sharp and powerful counternarrative, a layered, justice-minded critique of such interventions as well as a much needed skewering of ‘carceral feminism.’ An important, illuminating and engaging read.”
—Liliana Segura, Senior Editor, The Intercept (First Look Media)

“In [Playing the Whore], Grant critiques the policing of sex workers, the conditions of the industry, and the ongoing discussions surrounding how we see the sex industry as well as the sex workers themselves. [She] hits the major points of these huge topics and takes a powerful stance on the rights of sex workers.”
—River H. Kero, Book Riot


“In [<i>Playing the Whore</i>], Grant critiques the policing of sex workers, the conditions of the industry, and the ongoing discussions surrounding how we see the sex industry as well as the sex workers themselves. [She] hits the major points of these huge topics and takes a powerful stance on the rights of sex workers.”<br><strong>—River H. Kero, <i>Book Riot</i></strong><br><br>

About the Author

Melissa Gira Grant is a writer and freelance journalist whose work has appeared in Glamour, the Guardian, the Nation, Wired, and the Atlantic. She is also a Contributing Editor to Jacobin.
Her website is melissagiragrant.com.

Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Verso (March 11, 2014)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Paperback ‏ : ‎ 144 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1781683239
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1781683231
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 4.8 ounces
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 5.05 x 0.37 x 7.78 inches
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.6 out of 5 stars 132 ratings

About the author

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I’m a journalist and author, covering sexual politics and human rights. I'm a columnist for Pacific Standard, and my reporting and commentary has appeared in The Nation, The New York Times, BuzzFeed, VICE, Wired, The Guardian, The Washington Post, and Dissent, among other publications. I'm the author of Playing the Whore: The Work of Sex Work. I live in New York.

Customer reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5
132 global ratings

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Top reviews from other countries

Tamsyn
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic summary of the legal situation and societal attitudes around sex work.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on August 20, 2018
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Tezza
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 29, 2016
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jodie louise
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 28, 2015
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C. Griffiths
4.0 out of 5 stars as my priviledged middle-class male existence always needs a good shake. My significant other devoured the first few ...
Reviewed in Canada on October 27, 2014
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Heather Number 1
5.0 out of 5 stars like all work
Reviewed in Canada on April 5, 2017
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