Teela Sanders

  • Wednesday 18 October 2017
  • 12.00pm-1.00pm
  • Frank and Katherine May Lecture Theatre, Henry Welcome Building
  • Professor Sanders and Professor Neil Chakraborti will each present a half-hour lecture

Social Justice for Sex Workers: Stigma, Violence and Bad Laws

How do academics put their intellectual endeavours to use beyond that of their peers, the publishing industry and the demands of the REF? How does academic work, that is not dealing with crucial challenges like curing cancer or alleviating climate change, contribute to making social changes? To answer these questions this lecture will draw on a range of studies about the sex industry lead by Professor Sanders examining the stripping industry, the National Ugly Mug sex worker homicide database, a review of occupational risks for sex workers in relation to violence and mental health, a project on men who buy sex and an ongoing programme of work around digital technologies and sexual commerce. Themes will be unpicked from these findings to explore how academic work can resist stigma, inform policy, contribute to useful resources for practitioners and processes to work against violence and unsafe working conditions and assist with advocacy towards achieving rights for sex workers.

Teela Sanders 200x266.jpgProfessor Teela Sanders

Teela Sanders studied across the disciplines of sociology, social work, social policy and criminology before graduating with a DPhil in Sociology from the University of Oxford in 2003. Working for over a decade at the University of Leeds her work has been focused on merging the borders between sociology and criminology specifically in the areas of gender, regulation and social justice. True to her experience with grassroots organisations her research agenda has been underpinned by a desire to work with people to make small steps to change. Teela’s work around the sex industry has lead her to be an internationally acclaimed scholar leading this field, shaping the discipline through a range of projects and promoting interdisciplinary studies around understanding of commercial sex. At home, her work has featured in policy and practice developments through health care and support projects, policing practice and government policy. Her recent ESRC project Beyond the Gaze has produced significant new knowledge around digital technologies and the sex industry, as well as long lasting practical outputs, resources and policy activities.

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