22 Feb Dealing in Desire: Asian Ascendancy, Western Decline, and the Hidden Currencies of Global Sex Work
Kimberly Kay Hoang (University of Chicago, Department of Sociology)
Monday, February 22, 2016 / 4:00 PM
MultiCultural Center Theater
Kimberly Kay Hoang is an Assistant Professor of Sociology and the College at the University of Chicago. She is the author of Dealing in Desire: Asian Ascendancy, Western Decline, and the Hidden Currencies of Global Sex Work (2015) published by the University of California Press. She is also the lead editor of Human Trafficking Reconsidered: Rethinking the Problem, Envisioning New Solutions (2014), a collection commissioned by Open Society, with Professor Rhacel Parreñas. Her award winning articles have appeared in Social Problems, Gender & Society, Contexts, The Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, and Sexualities as well as in news articles for the BBC.
Dealing in Desire explores Vietnam’s sex industry as the country ascends the global and regional stage. Over the course of five years, Hoang, worked at four exclusive Saigon hostess bars catering to diverse clientele: wealthy local Vietnamese and Asian businessman, Viet Kieus (ethnic Vietnamese living abroad), Western businessmen, and Western budget-tourists. In this talk, Hoang takes an in-depth and often personal look at both sex workers and their clients to show how Vietnamese high finance and benevolent giving are connected to the intimate spheres of the informal economy. Hoang’s captivating ethnography 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.
Sponsored by the IHC’s New Sexualities RFG, the Hull Chair of Feminist Studies, the Dept. of Global Studies, the Dept. of East Asian Languages and Cultural Studies, the Dept. Film and Media Studies, The MultiCultural Center, the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Academic Policy, the Dept. of Asian American Studies, the Dept. of Sociology, the Women’s Center, the Alumni Association, and the IHC.