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Neon Wasteland: On Love, Motherhood, and Sex Work in a Rust Belt Town

Dewey, Susan.

30 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0520266900 / ISBN 13: 9780520266902
Published by University of California Press, Berkeley, 2011
Used Condition: As New Hardcover
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About this Item

. . . . 8vo, hardcover. No dust jacket; black cloth. As new condition. Bright, crisp & clean, unread. xxii, 258 p. Bookseller Inventory # 1110716.52

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Neon Wasteland: On Love, Motherhood, and Sex...

Publisher: University of California Press, Berkeley

Publication Date: 2011

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition: As New

About this title


This path-breaking book examines the lives of five topless dancers in the economically devastated rust belt” of upstate New York. With insight and empathy, Susan Dewey shows how these women negotiate their lives as parents, employees, and family members while working in a profession widely regarded as incompatible with motherhood and fidelity. Neither disparaging nor romanticizing her subjects, Dewey investigates the complicated dynamic of performance, resilience, economic need, and emotional vulnerability that comprises the life of a stripper. An accessibly written text that uses academic theories and methods to make sense of feminized labor, Neon Wasteland shows that sex work is part of the learned process by which some women come to believe that their self-esteem, material worth, and possibilities for life improvement are invested in their bodies.

From the Inside Flap:

"Through heartfelt ethnographic storytelling, Dewey provides a nuanced treatment of exotic dancers. This is a wonderful book."—Patty Kelly, author of Lydia's Open Door: Inside Mexico's Most Modern Brothel

"Neon Wasteland is a riveting and compelling book. Dewey's reflections and analyses are richly descriptive and insightful. She poignantly relates the stories of these women but also never lets the reader forget the stark social inequalities that are part of these women's daily lives."—Jennifer K. Wesely, PhD, co-author of Hard Lives, Mean Streets: Violence in the Lives of Homeless Women

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