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NCJ Number: 49864 Find in a Library
Title: TURNING-OUT - A STUDY OF TEENAGE PROSTITUTION
Journal: URBAN LIFE AND CULTURE  Volume:1  Issue:4  Dated:(JANUARY 1973)  Pages:401-425
Author(s): D GRAY
Corporate Author: Sage Publications, Inc
United States of America
Date Published: 1973
Page Count: 25
Sponsoring Agency: Sage Publications, Inc
Thousand Oaks, CA 91320
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: IN-DEPTH INTERVIEWS WERE CONDUCTED WITH 21 TEENAGE PROSTITUTES AND 4 WHO HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO BECOME PROSTITUTES BUT REFUSED. FACTORS BEHIND THEIR DECISIONS ARE GIVEN.
Abstract: THE MAJORITY OF THE GIRLS (15) WERE EITHER IN A JUVENILE INSTITUTION OR IN THE CITY JAIL AT TIME OF INTERVIEW; ALL LIVED IN THE SEATTLE, WASHINGTON, AREA. THE GIRLS RANGED IN AGE FROM 13 TO 21 YEARS, WITH A MEAN AGE OF 16.9. AGE AT BECOMING A PROSTITUTE RANGED FROM 12 TO 18 YEARS. THE PROSTITUTES INCLUDED 11 BLACK AND 10 WHITE GIRLS. NO RACIAL INFORMATION IS GIVEN FOR THE FOUR WHO DID NOT BECOME PROSTITUTES. ALL OF THE GIRLS SHOWED SIMILAR CHILDHOOD AND ADOLESCENT DEVELOPMENT PATTERNS: LOW SOCIOECONOMIC STATUS, WEAK PARENTAL TIES, LOW ATTACHMENT TO THE FAMILY, EARLY SEXUAL EXPERIENCES. ALL OF THE GIRLS REPORTED KNOWING SOMEONE IN PROSTITUTION; 7 REPORTED RELATIVES IN PROSTITUTION, AND 10 CLOSE FRIENDS. AN UNEXPECTED FINDING WAS THAT THE GIRLS CONSIDERED THE IDEA FOR A PERIOD OF TIME AND THAT THEY ACTIVELY SOUGHT OUT SOMEONE TO HELP THEM BREAK INTO THE FIELD. THE SOCIAL REWARDS OF THE PROSTITUTION SUBCULTURE WERE SEEN AS MORE IMPORTANT THAN THE MONEY OR THE CLOTHES. THIS SUGGESTS THAT THE YOUNG PROSTITUTE SEEKS, THROUGH UNCONVENTIONAL BEHAVIOR, THE SOCIAL REINFORCEMENT SHE DOES NOT RECEIVE IN OTHER REALMS OF HER LIFE. THOSE WHO REJECTED PROSTITUTION CITED THE NEGATIVE ASPECTS, INCLUDING DANGERS OF ARREST, HAZARDS OF STREET LIFE, AND VENEREAL DISEASE. THE GIRLS WHO BECAME PROSTITUTES WERE REALISTIC ABOUT THE DISADVANTAGES BUT FELT THE REWARDS OFFSET THEM. IT IS CONCLUDED THAT ONCE A GIRL ENTERS PROSTITUTION SHE IS LIKELY TO MAKE IT A LIFETIME CAREER AND THAT IN TODAY'S SOCIETY, PROSTITUTION IS SEEN BY MANY ADOLESCENT GIRLS AS A VIABLE AVENUE OF EMPLOYMENT. (GLR)
Index Term(s): Females; Juveniles; Prostitution; Research; Studies; Washington
Note: REVISED VERSION OF A PAPER PRESENTED AT THE ANNUAL MEETING OF THE PACIFIC SOCIOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION, PORTLAND (OR), APRIL 13-15, 1972
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=49864

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