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Sex Tourism

  • By: Susan L. Wortmann & Lyndie Christensen
  • In: Encyclopedia of Consumer Culture
  • Edited by: Dale Southerton
  • Subject:Sociology of Consumption, Consumer Psychology, Consumer Culture

Travel and tourism are major venues for modern consumption. Together, these sectors employ close to 8 percent of all workers and produce 9.4 percent of the world's gross domestic product (Brents et al. 2010). Sex tourism, a multibillion dollar industry, refers to travel through tourist sectors and structures for the primary purpose of sexual relations with residents at the destination. It can be categorized as domestic (within a country) or international (across borders) and divided into commercial (prostitution) or noncommercial activity (acquaintance sex). Globalization and the interconnection of world markets combined with an international environment conducive to commodified sexuality have aided its growth. So have online technologies, air travel, ground transport, and supportive business infrastructures such as hotel and hotel-related industries.

Tourism, in general, provides the ...

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