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Prostitution, Pimping and Trafficking

5th September 2018 · 7:00pm - 8:30pm

In person | Virtual event

 Prostitution, Pimping and Trafficking

Speakers: Dr Stacy Banwell, Dr Kevin Brown, Dr Jane Jordan, Dr Julia Laite, Dr Siobhán Hearne and Prof Roger Matthews.

Presented by Conway Hall Ethical Society and curated by Deborah Lavin.

It seems more likely that the priesthood or medicine are the world’s “oldest professions”, even so prostitution has a very long history, mostly hidden and denied at the margins of society where few serious historians and economists have ventured. Many immediate post-war pundits actually thought the relaxation of traditional sexual morals and the rise of the Cradle to Grave Welfare state would confine prostitution to the dustbin of history. Quite the opposite, while the traditional sole trader/small business model of prostitution survives, prostitution has had a new lease of life in the globalised economy and prostitution now attracts the serious attention of academics as well as governments

Prostitution, Pimping and Trafficking offers six talks. The speakers are not in agreement with each other on every point, but they all certainly agree in seeing prostitution not as something on the margins, but as a key 21st century issue.

Tickets: individual tickets £6, students & participating society members £4.

Series ticket (6 talks for the price of 5): £30, students & participating society members £20.

*** You can book the series tickets by selecting ‘Book now’ or buy tickets for the individual talks by following the links below. ***

September 5th (Brockway Room)

Forced Prostitution: Unpacking the Links between Globalisation, Neo-Liberalism and the Illicit Sex Trade. Speaker: Dr Stacy Banwell

September 12th (Library) *

They Always Blame the Woman! Syphilis and Fallen Women 1495-1945. Speaker: Dr Kevin Brown

September 19th (Library) *

Josephine Butler and the “Ladies Campaign” against the Contagious Diseases Acts. Speaker: Dr Jane Jordan

September 26th (Library) *

White Slaves to “Hard Girls”. Increasing Criminalisation and its Consequences (1885-1960). Speaker: Dr Julia Laite

October 3rd (Brockway Room)

From “Yellow Ticket” to “Bourgeois Evil”, Prostitution in Russia 1900-1930. Speaker: Dr Siobhán Hearne

October 10th (Brockway Room)

Contemporary Prostitution, Politics and Policy. Speaker: Prof Roger Matthews


Deborah Lavin is an independent historian particularly interested in the conflicts between radicals and socialists in the 19th century. At Conway Hall, she has given various talks mostly on issues connected to Charles Bradlaugh, Annie Besant and Karl Marx; she has also curated several talks series, most recently The British Business of Slavery and Stop the First World War.

* We are committed to promoting inclusive practice at Conway Hall. Due to the constraints of our building, the Library is not currently accessible to wheelchair users or those with limited mobility, we are happy to discuss with you how we can make the contents and materials accessible to you. We carefully monitor which events are held in the Library, and will use your comments to enable us to develop ways to ensure that everyone should be able to attend events in the future.

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