Dealing in Desire

Author: Kimberly Kay Hoang
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 9780520960688
Release Date: 2015-02-11
Genre: Social Science

This captivating ethnography explores Vietnam’s sex industry as the country ascends the global and regional stage. Over the course of five years, author Kimberly Kay Hoang worked at four exclusive Saigon hostess bars catering to diverse clientele: wealthy local Vietnamese and Asian businessmen, Viet Kieus (ethnic Vietnamese living abroad), Western businessmen, and Western budget-tourists. Dealing in Desire takes an in-depth and often personal look at both the sex workers and their clients to show how Vietnamese high finance and benevolent giving are connected to the intimate spheres of the informal economy. For the domestic super-elite who use the levers of political power to channel foreign capital into real estate and manufacturing projects, conspicuous consumption is a means of projecting an image of Asian ascendancy to potential investors. For Viet Kieus and Westerners who bring remittances into the local economy, personal relationships with local sex workers reinforce their ideas of Asia’s rise and Western decline, while simultaneously bolstering their diminished masculinity. Dealing in Desire illuminates Ho Chi Minh City’s sex industry as not just a microcosm of the global economy, but a critical space where dreams and deals are traded.

Dealing in Desire

Author: Kimberly Kay Hoang
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 9780520275577
Release Date: 2015-02-11
Genre: Social Science

"This fascinating ethnography examines one segment of Vietnam's diverse sex industry. Between 2006 and 2010, author Kimberly Kay Hoang was employed at four exclusive Saigon hostess bars catering to high-end clientele: wealthy Asian businessmen, Western expatriates and tourists, local Vietnamese men, and Viet Kieus (ethnic Vietnamese living abroad). Using participant observation and in-depth interviews with the sex workers, bar owners, managers, and mostly rich clients at all four locations, Hoang argues that Vietnam's high-end sex industry is much more than a byproduct of globalization--it's an integral component of the country's free-market capitalism, including its emergence as a regional economic player. Major business deals in Vietnam often occur within hostess bars, which businessmen use to stage a display of power, forge relationships, and impress clients. Hostesses facilitate these transactions by socializing with clients, as well as fulfilling fantasies of the flesh and of the culture. The author reveals how recent changes in the political economy have shaped the social structure of sex work in the country, just as actors involved in the sex industry have actively shaped Vietnam's political economy. Multiple constructions of gender are emerging across local, national, and global socio-spaces from the bottom up and the top down"--Provided by publisher.

Dealing in Desire

Author: Kimberly Kay Hoang
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 9780520275553
Release Date: 2015-02-11
Genre: Social Science

"This fascinating ethnography examines one segment of Vietnam's diverse sex industry. Between 2006 and 2010, author Kimberly Kay Hoang was employed at four exclusive Saigon hostess bars catering to high-end clientele: wealthy Asian businessmen, Western expatriates and tourists, local Vietnamese men, and Viet Kieus (ethnic Vietnamese living abroad). Using participant observation and in-depth interviews with the sex workers, bar owners, managers, and mostly rich clients at all four locations, Hoang argues that Vietnam's high-end sex industry is much more than a byproduct of globalization--it's an integral component of the country's free-market capitalism, including its emergence as a regional economic player. Major business deals in Vietnam often occur within hostess bars, which businessmen use to stage a display of power, forge relationships, and impress clients. Hostesses facilitate these transactions by socializing with clients, as well as fulfilling fantasies of the flesh and of the culture. The author reveals how recent changes in the political economy have shaped the social structure of sex work in the country, just as actors involved in the sex industry have actively shaped Vietnam's political economy. Multiple constructions of gender are emerging across local, national, and global socio-spaces from the bottom up and the top down"--Provided by publisher.

Liquidated

Author: Karen Ho
Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 9780822391371
Release Date: 2009-06-22
Genre: Social Science

Financial collapses—whether of the junk bond market, the Internet bubble, or the highly leveraged housing market—are often explained as the inevitable result of market cycles: What goes up must come down. In Liquidated, Karen Ho punctures the aura of the abstract, all-powerful market to show how financial markets, and particularly booms and busts, are constructed. Through an in-depth investigation into the everyday experiences and ideologies of Wall Street investment bankers, Ho describes how a financially dominant but highly unstable market system is understood, justified, and produced through the restructuring of corporations and the larger economy. Ho, who worked at an investment bank herself, argues that bankers’ approaches to financial markets and corporate America are inseparable from the structures and strategies of their workplaces. Her ethnographic analysis of those workplaces is filled with the voices of stressed first-year associates, overworked and alienated analysts, undergraduates eager to be hired, and seasoned managing directors. Recruited from elite universities as “the best and the brightest,” investment bankers are socialized into a world of high risk and high reward. They are paid handsomely, with the understanding that they may be let go at any time. Their workplace culture and networks of privilege create the perception that job insecurity builds character, and employee liquidity results in smart, efficient business. Based on this culture of liquidity and compensation practices tied to profligate deal-making, Wall Street investment bankers reshape corporate America in their own image. Their mission is the creation of shareholder value, but Ho demonstrates that their practices and assumptions often produce crises instead. By connecting the values and actions of investment bankers to the construction of markets and the restructuring of U.S. corporations, Liquidated reveals the particular culture of Wall Street often obscured by triumphalist readings of capitalist globalization.

Israel Palestine and the Queer International

Author: Sarah Schulman
Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 9780822353737
Release Date: 2012-10-12
Genre: History

At once a memoir, a call to support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, and an argument for queer solidarity across borders, this book tells the story of how novelist and activist Sarah Schulman's became aware of how issues of the Israeli occupation of Palestine were tied to her own gay and lesbian politics.

Intimate Migrations

Author: Deborah A. Boehm
Publisher: NYU Press
ISBN: 9781479885558
Release Date: 2013-07-01
Genre: Social Science

In her research with transnational Mexicans, Deborah A. Boehm has often asked individuals: if there were no barriers to your movement between Mexico and the United States, where would you choose to live? Almost always, they desire the freedom to “come and go.” Yet the barriers preventing such movement are many. Because of rigid U.S. immigration policies, Mexican immigrants often find themselves living long distances from family members and unable to easily cross the U.S.-Mexico border. Transnational Mexicans experience what Boehm calls “intimate migrations,” flows that both shape and are structured by gendered and familial actions and interactions, but are always defined by the presence of the U.S. state. By showing how intimate relations direct migration, and by looking at kin and gender relationships through the lens of “illegality,” Boehm sheds new light on the study of gender and kinship, as well as understandings of the state and transnational migration.

Global Cinderellas

Author: Pei-Chia Lan
Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 9780822387787
Release Date: 2006-03-13
Genre: Business & Economics

Migrant women are the primary source of paid domestic labor around the world. Since the 1980s, the newly prosperous countries of East Asia have recruited foreign household workers at a rapidly increasing rate. Many come from the Philippines and Indonesia. Pei-Chia Lan interviewed and spent time with dozens of Filipina and Indonesian domestics working in and around Taipei as well as many of their Taiwanese employers. On the basis of the vivid ethnographic detail she collected, Lan provides a nuanced look at how boundaries between worker and employer are maintained and negotiated in private households. She also sheds light on the fate of the workers, “global Cinderellas” who seek an escape from poverty at home only to find themselves treated as disposable labor abroad. Lan demonstrates how economic disparities, immigration policies, race, ethnicity, and gender intersect in the relationship between the migrant workers and their Taiwanese employers. The employers are eager to flex their recently acquired financial muscle; many are first-generation career women as well as first-generation employers. The domestics are recruited from abroad as contract and “guest” workers; restrictive immigration policies prohibit them from seeking permanent residence or transferring from one employer to another. They care for Taiwanese families’ children, often having left their own behind. Throughout Global Cinderellas, Lan pays particular attention to how the women she studied identify themselves in relation to “others”—whether they be of different classes, nationalities, ethnicities, or education levels. In so doing, she offers a framework for thinking about how migrant workers and their employers understand themselves in the midst of dynamic transnational labor flows.

Romance on a Global Stage

Author: Nicole Constable
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520937228
Release Date: 2003-09-18
Genre: Social Science

By the year 2000 more than 350 Internet agencies were plying the email-order marriage trade, and the business of matching up mostly Western men with women from Asia, Eastern Europe, and Latin America had become an example of globalization writ large. This provocative work opens a window onto the complex motivations and experiences of the people behind the stereotypes and misconceptions that have exploded along with the practice of transnational courtship and marriage. Combining extensive Internet ethnography and face-to-face fieldwork, Romance on a Global Stage looks at the intimate realities of Filipinas, Chinese women, and U.S. men corresponding in hopes of finding a suitable marriage partner. Through the experiences of those engaged in pen pal relationships—their stories of love, romance, migration, and long-distance dating—this book conveys the richness and dignity of women's and men's choices without reducing these correspondents to calculating opportunists or naive romantics. Attentive to the structural, cultural, and personal factors that prompt women and men to seek marriage partners abroad, Romance on a Global Stage questions the dichotomies so frequently drawn between structure and agency, and between global and local levels of analysis.

Homosexuality in Islam

Author: Scott Siraj al-Haqq Kugle
Publisher: Oneworld Publications
ISBN: 9781780740287
Release Date: 2010-01-01
Genre: Religion

Homosexuality is anathema to Islam – or so the majority of both believers and non-believers suppose. Throughout the Muslim world, it is met with hostility, where state punishments range from hefty fines to the death penalty. Likewise, numerous scholars and commentators maintain that the Qur’an and Hadith rule unambiguously against same-sex relations. This pioneering study argues that there is far more nuance to the matter than most believe. In its narrative of Lot, the Qur’an could be interpreted as condemning lust rather homosexuality. While some Hadith are fiercely critical of homosexuality, some are far more equivocal. One even appears to actively endorse love between men. This is the first book length treatment to offer a detailed analysis of how Islamic scripture, jurisprudence, and Hadith, can not only accommodate a sexually sensitive Islam, but actively endorse it. Scott Kugle is the first Muslim to publish widely on the issue of homosexuality and Islam. An independent research scholar in Islamic studies, he has previously held positions at Duke University, the University of Cape Town, and Swarthmore College.

The Stickup Kids

Author: Randol Contreras
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 9780520273375
Release Date: 2013
Genre: Social Science

Randol Contreras came of age in the South Bronx during the 1980s, a time when the community was devastated by cuts in social services, a rise in arson and abandonment, and the rise of crack-cocaine. For this riveting book, he returns to the South Bronx with a sociological eye and provides an unprecedented insider’s look at the workings of a group of Dominican drug robbers. Known on the streets as “Stickup Kids,” these men raided and brutally tortured drug dealers storing large amounts of heroin, cocaine, marijuana, and cash. As a participant observer, Randol Contreras offers both a personal and theoretical account for the rise of the Stickup Kids and their violence. He mainly focuses on the lives of neighborhood friends, who went from being crack dealers to drug robbers once their lucrative crack market opportunities disappeared. The result is a stunning, vivid, on-the-ground ethnographic description of a drug robbery’s violence, the drug market high life, the criminal life course, and the eventual pain and suffering experienced by the casualties of the Crack Era. Provocative and eye-opening, The Stickup Kids urges us to explore the ravages of the drug trade through weaving history, biography, social structure, and drug market forces. It offers a revelatory explanation for drug market violence by masterfully uncovering the hidden social forces that produce violent and self-destructive individuals. Part memoir, part penetrating analysis, this book is engaging, personal, deeply informed, and entirely absorbing.

On the Line

Author: Vanesa Ribas
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 9780520282957
Release Date: 2015-12-08
Genre: Political Science

“How does one put into words the rage that workers feel when supervisors threaten to replace them with workers who will not go to the bathroom in the course of a fourteen-hour day of hard labor, even if it means wetting themselves on the line?”—From the Preface In this gutsy, eye-opening examination of the lives of workers in the New South, Vanesa Ribas, working alongside mostly Latino/a and native-born African American laborers for sixteen months, takes us inside the contemporary American slaughterhouse. Ribas, a native Spanish speaker, occupies an insider/outsider status there, enabling her to capture vividly the oppressive exploitation experienced by her fellow workers. She showcases the particular vulnerabilities faced by immigrant workers—a constant looming threat of deportation, reluctance to seek medical attention, and family separation—as she also illuminates how workers find connection and moments of pleasure during their grueling shifts. Bringing to the fore the words, ideas, and struggles of the workers themselves, On The Line underlines how deep racial tensions permeate the factory, as an overwhelmingly minority workforce is subject to white dominance. Compulsively readable, this extraordinary ethnography makes a powerful case for greater labor protection, especially for our nation’s most vulnerable workers.

Ancient Bodies Ancient Lives

Author: Rosemary A. Joyce
Publisher:
ISBN: STANFORD:36105131784303
Release Date: 2008
Genre: Social Science

An anthropological report on gender roles in prehistoric times draws on a wealth of recent studies that offers insight into the history of sexual identity as it developed hundreds of thousands of years ago, challenging modern stereotypes and assumptions to explain the different ways in which ancient people defined themselves.

On the Move for Love

Author: Sealing Cheng
Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press
ISBN: 0812206924
Release Date: 2011-11-29
Genre: Social Science

Since the Korean War, gijichon—U.S. military camp towns—have been fixtures in South Korea. The most popular entertainment venues in gijichon are clubs, attracting military clientele with duty-free alcohol, music, shows, and women entertainers. In the 1990s, South Korea's rapid economic advancement, combined with the stigma and low pay attached to this work, led to a shortage of Korean women willing to serve American soldiers. Club owners brought in cheap labor, predominantly from the Philippines and ex-Soviet states, to fill the vacancies left by Korean women. The increasing presence of foreign workers has precipitated new conversations about modernity, nationalism, ethnicity, and human rights in South Korea. International NGOs, feminists, and media reports have identified women migrant entertainers as "victims of sex trafficking," insisting that their plight is one of forced prostitution. Are women who travel to work in such clubs victims of trafficking, sex slaves, or simply migrant women? How do these women understand their own experiences? Is antitrafficking activism helpful in protecting them? In On the Move for Love, Sealing Cheng attempts to answer these questions by following the lives of migrant Filipina entertainers working in various gijichon clubs. Focusing on their aspirations for love and a better future, Cheng's ethnography illuminates the complex relationships these women form with their employers, customer-boyfriends, and families. She offers an insightful critique of antitrafficking discourses, pointing to the inadequacy of recognizing women only as victims and ignoring their agency and aspirations. Cheng analyzes the women's experience in South Korea in relation to their subsequent journeys to other countries, providing a diachronic look at the way migrant issues of work, sex, and love fit within the larger context of transnationalism, identity, and global hierarchies of inequality.

Aging and Loss

Author: Jason Danely
Publisher: Rutgers University Press
ISBN: 9780813565187
Release Date: 2015-01-02
Genre: Social Science

By 2030, over 30% of the Japanese population will be 65 or older, foreshadowing the demographic changes occurring elsewhere in Asia and around the world. What can we learn from a study of the aging population of Japan and how can these findings inform a path forward for the elderly, their families, and for policy makers? Based on nearly a decade of research, Aging and Loss examines how the landscape of aging is felt, understood, and embodied by older adults themselves. In detailed portraits, anthropologist Jason Danely delves into the everyday lives of older Japanese adults as they construct narratives through acts of reminiscence, social engagement and ritual practice, and reveals the pervasive cultural aesthetic of loss and of being a burden. Through first-hand accounts of rituals in homes, cemeteries, and religious centers, Danely argues that what he calls the self-in-suspense can lead to the emergence of creative participation in an economy of care. In everyday rituals for the spirits, older adults exercise agency and reinterpret concerns of social abandonment within a meaningful cultural narrative and, by reimagining themselves and their place in the family through these rituals, older adults in Japan challenge popular attitudes about eldercare. Danely’s discussion of health and long-term care policy, and community welfare organizations, reveal a complex picture of Japan’s aging society.