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PHIL 120W (84)
Sam Black (30)
Lecture

Prostitution

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Department
Philosophy
Course
PHIL 120W
Professor
Sam Black
Semester
Fall

Description
October 24, 2012 – PHIL 1102 Relationship, friendship, now we’re moving onto prostitution Two prostitution articles: 1. Arkes – page 229 2. Ericsson – page 239 Prostitution  Started at 2500 BC o List of permissions included transvestite entertainers, and male/female prositutes  1075 BC – Asserians – “If the wives of a man, or the daughters of a man, their heads shall be veiled. But if the prositutes go onto the street, they shall not be veiled” o Hetaira – female companions, higher up prositutes, accompany higher-up men not necessarily for sex  Pericles had a hetaera named Aspaezia o Lower level – cortizans and prostitutes  Roman period o Rent from brothels = legitimate source of income  What is prostitution – sexual relationships as a result of o Noncoercive o Mutual o Involving neither love or affection o Financial transaction Arkes – Prostitution is morally impermissible  Reaction to Goldman’s idea that sex is just a physical phenomena  His argument: Prostitution is intrinsically bad – something morally wrong with prostitution itself o The act itself is wrong  Doesn’t argue against prostitution using its bad consequences  It’s wrong not because of its bad consequences, but it’s wrong because it is wrong in itself o Goldman said the opposite, that it’s morally neutral  Just because that there’s a rise in pickpocketing during a Yankees baseball game, doesn’t mean that baseball is wrong itself.  Positive part of his account: we traditionally take the word prostitute as a term of contempt, we look down on it (i.e., insulting someone using the word whore which is linked to prostitution)  why we have this contempt for prostitution o The disparity that is related to a loving sexual act, and the kind of sex that is involved in prostitution; prostitution sex isn’t associated with love and all that is related to it. o Sex is deeply personal. It is inextricably linked to love. o Marriage vs. prostitution  Page 233 “Prostitution inescapably implies . . .“ o Animal-like, hydraulic action  play on words  Does not argue against actual prostitution and buying sex, argues more against the lack of genuine affection October 24, 2012 – PHIL 1102  Encases idea of sex within the context of marriage  Not a committed loving relationship so therefore it’s bad.  Looks at Goldman’s example of rape (it’s bad because of how people treat each other, not the actual sex) o Arkes disagrees o Says there is something fundamentally different about sex than other kinds of activities o Different in ways that are morally significant o Sex is not like playing golf or driving a car  Page 236 “There was an awareness. . .”  There’s something about sex that makes it worse than other activities  Rape is worse than other activities in which you are taken advantage of because it involves sex o i.e., Rape is worse than pickpocketing  Why does he bring up rape in his argument for prostitution?  We don’t regard sex as morally on par with other activities; therefore prostitution is morally inferior to other types of sexual activities (the ones involved in marriage). Ericsson – Prostitution is morally permissible Common Charges against Prostitution 1. The conventional morality charge – Common view that prostitution is bad because it is morally bad and should be stopped.  Why do we have this hostile view of prostitution? Sociological reason? o Because of its relationship to reproduction and a monogamous marriage o Prostitution doesn’t cater to monogamy o We follow along with what people think o Sex should best be represented by marriage o Prostitution doesn’t represe
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