Date of Award

Spring 5-2013

Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program

Urban Studies


School of Urban and Regional Studies

Major Professor

Beriss, David

Second Advisor

Ehrenreich, Jeffrey

Third Advisor

Gladstone, David


In this research I examine the complexity of male sexuality and masculinity among male sex workers in New Orleans. Despite danger to their health and social standing, men engage in risky sexual behavior with other men for both business and pleasure. These behaviors may stem from the thrill of risk itself, or from other causes such as unexplored sexual inhibitions on the part of the male sex workers or their clients. Focusing on male sex workers, this ethnographic study explores why male sex workers engage in work that is high risk and potentially very dangerous. It examines the world of male sex work as one of the few places where men who adopt homosexual identity and those who refuse it are in intimate contact with one another. It offers us the opportunity to address questions about male sexual identity and homosexual desire, while attempting to understand the commodified spatial practices of a sexual culture in New Orleans.


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