In this interview, femi babylon elaborates a proheaux womanist theory of erotic labor as at once work and antiwork. “Sex work is work” speaks to the realities of erotic labor as a survival strategy and illuminates the connections among erotic labor and other forms of gig work. At the same time, it can operate as a bid for respectability, and one that occludes erotic labor as a strategy for refusing the work ethic. Thinking through the politics of the survival sex/sex work binary, the (dis)connections among wives and whores, and the intersections of whorephobia and misogynoir in conversations about sex worker motherhood, babylon engages key points of debate in sex worker theory today.
Erotic Labor within and without Work: An Interview with femi babylon
Heather Berg writes about sex, work, and social struggle. She is the author of Porn Work: Sex, Labor, and Late Capitalism (2021). Her recent essays include “Sex Work after the Future” (2020), “Left of #MeToo” (2020), and “Porn Work, Independent Contractor Misclassification, and the Limits of the Law” (2021). She is assistant professor of women, gender, and sexuality studies at Washington University in St. Louis.
femi babylon, Heather Berg; Erotic Labor within and without Work: An Interview with femi babylon. South Atlantic Quarterly 1 July 2021; 120 (3): 631–640. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/00382876-9154955
Download citation file: