The Sexual Question: A History of Prostitution in Peru, c. 1850-1950
In this seminar, Paulo will invite the audience to explore the history of prostitution in Peru. The creation of Lima's red light district in 1928 marked the culminating achievement of the promoters of regulation who sought to control the spread of venereal disease by medically policing female prostitutes. Its closure in 1956 was arguably the high point of abolitionism, a transnational movement originating in the 1860s that advocated that regulation was not only ineffective from a public health perspective, but also morally wrong. The Sexual Question charts this cyclic process of regulation and abolition in Peru, uncovering the ideas, policies, and actors shaping the debates on prostitution in Lima and beyond.
In this talk, Paulo will argue how the history of prostitution, sheds light on the interplay of gender and sexuality, medicine and public health, and nation-building and state formation in Peru.
Dr Paulo Drinot studied economic history at the London School of Economics as an undergraduate and an MPhil in Latin American Studies and a DPhil in Modern History at Oxford. He was co-editor of the Journal of Latin American Studies (2014-2018).
Please note that this session will NOT be live-streamed/recorded