post by : Huerta Vazquez Anais
Oppermann, M. (1999). Sex tourism. Annals of Tourism Research, 26(2), 251-266.
Sex is since long considered as a one of many tourism attractions in the world although the ethical point of view doesn't’t accept this even until today. Has the white woman been victim of slavery? Has she done it by her own will? Does men abuse from their financial weakness? All those questions are interesting but not easy to answer. The main sex tourist comes from developed to developing countries. Obviously, they don’t go to such destinations only for sex. They have other activities such as business and/or others. It is surprising to see that most of sex tourists are not ashamed to classify them as so. However, the “traditional” sex tourist doesn't exist. Nowadays, the sex seeker encounters the provider more than once and monetary exchange doesn't always take place. Sex tourism is not prostitution whereas prostitution is sex tourism. Monetary exchange in a prostitute-customer relationship is always a win-win even though the money doesn't’t take place. Therefore, the gain might be in other forms such as an invitation, along with an airline ticket, to sex seeker’s home country.Furthermore, some women enjoy the power that money gives them over men. They feel safe economically and independent. So, “who exploits whom”? In Australia for instance, prostitution is depreciated because of their reputation of being emotionally and sexually cold, detached and making little effort to please the customer. Indeed, nowadays, men need more than masturbation. Men look also for love, emotions, attachment, therefore they prefer to go to developing countries’ prostitutes who provide more tenderness which is more than just copulate. Tourists may also hire prostitute for an hourly basis, for days or even for weeks. This gives them the illusion to have a “friend” whom they can spend time with. Eventually those kind of relationships even end into marriage. Other sex tourists return to the same prostitute and maintain their relationship keeping in touch by writing letters. Regular customer are beneficial for both sides as it reduces the “risk taking” for both. Finally, it exists men that have more than one wife located in different countries for their convenience. In the contrary, as women are growing economically, soon male sex providers will be serving female seekers. In Thailand for instance, it has been seen women going to Gogo-bars in a voyeuristic role observing male sex tourist behaviour.
Viewing sex providers’ and tourists’ relationship as a matter of monetary exchange is inadequate. After all, the tourism industry has long made use of sex in its advertising! Street prostitutes continue to be considered as bad mistresses and high-class girls are accepted, and sexual action among tourists is considered as adventurous, while interaction with prostitutes is seen negatively.
Huerta Vazquez, Anaïs - 702_e (2015)