SOC229 Lecture Notes - Lecture 7: Victimless Crime, Desroches Island, Non-Penetrative Sex

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20 Jul 2016
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check exam mark @ office door on Thurs, STJ 3024
Tearoom Trade
Describe and critically analyze Humpreys’ research sample and methodology
Compare Humphrey’s study as Desroches’ sample of tearoom participants
Define and explain the watchqueen and other voyeur roles
Critically analyze ethical issues related to Humphrey’s study
Explain the location of tearooms and how they are discovered
Describe the research benefits of Humphrey’s interviews with dozen
tearoom participants
*something may not be illegal, but rather deviant/immoral
Defining Tearooms
Impersonal sex in public places (men’s washrooms – homosexual activity
*distinction)
Widespread but understudied (Victoria Park, Fairview Mall)
Also known as “cottaging” (UK name)
Male behavior
Victimless crime (if crime at all), no jail time
Not in criminal code, designated morally offensive by judges
Nothing in criminal code designates this as a crime, but if brought before the
court the judge may deem it morally offensive, therefore criminal, and could
get prosecuted (fine, permanent record, typically no jail time)
Urban phenomenon, happens in metropolitan areas
“tearoom” label came North American
Scope of Humphrey’s Research
Public nature of act – exposure to arrest and identity
Risk of arrest, if caught anonymity no longer protected
Homosexual himself, activist for gay rights
Suspected of involvement himself
oMaking study controversial
oEthical guidelines of universities introduced
oHe did not obtain consent
12 people (intensive 12) were studied legally (with consent), least
controversial part of study
he was there observing without clearance
from academic standpoint he contravened ethical rules
Discovering Tearooms Humphrey’s
Direct observation (Humphrey as “watchqueen”) – made sure coast was
clear, gained trust
Depth interviews (intensive 12)
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