Cold War sex work : the sexual and political economy of Taiwan cross-strait relations

Iting CHEN

Research output: Other Conference ContributionsPresentationPresentation

Abstract

Feminist scholar Naifei Ding (2015) coined the term “cold sex war” to delineate how the US and UN’s programme of gender equality has served as a cultural programme to reeducate women away from “enemy patriarchal-cum-socialist influences” (Ding, 2015, p.58). Building on Ding’s work, I propose the term “cold war sex work” to highlight the ways in which crossstrait sex work has been identified as the Other of cold war feminism: only by devaluing the labour of sex workers as sexual exploitation, slavery, and human trafficking can the concepts of US modernity such as neoliberalism, freedom of speech, and democracy become valuable. I adopt an ethnographic approach in looking at cross-strait sex workers—those who migrate between the two Chinas (the People's Republic of China, PRC, and the Republic of China, ROC). I examine their affective practices in the teahouses in urban areas in Taiwan to see not only how their stories are interpreted through feminist vocabularies but, more importantly, how the feminist interpretations of their stories reproduce the cold sex war narrative. Extending this analysis, I will investigate how the cold war is prolonged in the context of cross-strait sex work in Taiwan.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 8 Dec 2018
EventInternational Conference on Gender, Sexuality and Justice : Resilience in Uncertain Times - The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Duration: 7 Dec 20188 Dec 2018

Conference

ConferenceInternational Conference on Gender, Sexuality and Justice : Resilience in Uncertain Times
CountryHong Kong
Period7/12/188/12/18

Fingerprint

cold war
political economy
Taiwan
China
cultural program
freedom of opinion
slavery
neoliberalism
feminism
exploitation
modernity
equality
republic
vocabulary
UNO
urban area
democracy
labor
worker
narrative

Cite this

CHEN, I. (2018). Cold War sex work : the sexual and political economy of Taiwan cross-strait relations. International Conference on Gender, Sexuality and Justice : Resilience in Uncertain Times, Hong Kong.
CHEN, Iting. / Cold War sex work : the sexual and political economy of Taiwan cross-strait relations. International Conference on Gender, Sexuality and Justice : Resilience in Uncertain Times, Hong Kong.
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CHEN, I 2018, 'Cold War sex work : the sexual and political economy of Taiwan cross-strait relations' International Conference on Gender, Sexuality and Justice : Resilience in Uncertain Times, Hong Kong, 7/12/18 - 8/12/18, .

Cold War sex work : the sexual and political economy of Taiwan cross-strait relations. / CHEN, Iting.

2018. International Conference on Gender, Sexuality and Justice : Resilience in Uncertain Times, Hong Kong.

Research output: Other Conference ContributionsPresentationPresentation

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CHEN I. Cold War sex work : the sexual and political economy of Taiwan cross-strait relations. 2018. International Conference on Gender, Sexuality and Justice : Resilience in Uncertain Times, Hong Kong.