The Criminalisation of Buying Sex: the Politics of Prostitution in Sweden

  title={The Criminalisation of Buying Sex: the Politics of Prostitution in Sweden},
  author={Arthur L. Gould},
  journal={Journal of Social Policy},
  pages={437 - 456}
  • A. Gould
  • Published 1 July 2001
  • Political Science
  • Journal of Social Policy
While there are feminists in other countries who would like to see the buying of sex made illegal, Sweden is indeed unique for having done so. Sweden's popular form of radical feminism has shown itself to be highly effective in mobilising support and creating a broad consensus on an issue which can be very divisive. This article outlines the Swedish debate about prostitution, to find out why legislation was passed which is barely on the agenda in other countries. While the strength and purpose… 
The Swedish Sex Purchase Act: Claimed Success and Documented Effect
Sweden's criminalization of the purchase of sexual services in 1999 is said to be a unique measure: to only punish those who buy sexual services, not those who sell them. However this alleged
Abolitionist feminism as patriarchal control: Swedish understandings of prostitution and trafficking
In this special issue, we note some recurrent themes in international political and discursive engagement with a moral panic concerning human trafficking, notably a conflation of forced and free
Governing in the Name of Caring—the Nordic Model of Prostitution and its Punitive Consequences for Migrants Who Sell Sex
  • Niina Vuolajärvi
  • Sociology, Political Science
    Sexuality Research and Social Policy
  • 2018
This article examines the so-called “Nordic model” in action. Using feminist argumentation, the model aims to abolish commercial sex by criminalizing the buying of sexual services while not
The Swedish Prostitution Policy in Context
The Swedish Sex Purchase Act has sparked considerable interest and debate internationally since it was introduced in 1999. This chapter describes and contextualizes the political process preceding
A Particular Kind of Violence: Swedish Social Policy Puzzles of a Multipurpose Criminal Law
This article explores the policy underpinning Sweden's 1999 ban on purchases of sexual services with a focus on the social and health service sectors and their role vis-à-vis people who sell sex. It
Sweden’s abolitionist discourse and law: Effects on the dynamics of Swedish sex work and on the lives of Sweden’s sex workers
The Swedish criminalization of the purchase of sex aims to abolish prostitution through targeting the demand, while decriminalizing those selling sex in an ostensible effort to protect sex workers –
Violence, Sex or Work? Claims-making against the Swedish ban on the purchase of sexual services on the Internet
Internationally there is an on-going political struggle regarding whether to define prostitution as violence, sex or work. In Sweden, however, the national law that bans purchase of sexual services,
The Sex Worker Rights Movement in Canada: Challenging the 'Prostitution Laws'
The contemporary movement for sex workers’ rights organizes around a range of international, national, and localized grievances. They are unified in their efforts to promote and protect sex workers’
Security , Equality and the Clash of Ideas : Sweden ’ s Evolving Trafficking Policy
Seeking to explain the emergence of anti-trafficking initiatives, scholars have explored two sets of ideas – national security and gender equality – thought to shape policy. In this paper, we examine
Prostitution Policy Models and Feminist Knowledge Politics in New Zealand and Sweden
This article analyses expert discourse on prostitution in New Zealand and Sweden using governmentality theory. The article shows that in both cases, experts adopted research methodologies based in


Prostitution: Collectives and the Politics of Regulation
The regulation of prostitution is changing as rapidly as its organization and sex workers have had more influence on this than usually recognized in either theory or research on prostitutes? rights.
Prostitution, Exploitation and Taboo
It is so generally accepted that prostitution is immoral, that this is one of the least discussed of all ethical issues. Few serious philosophical treatments of the subject have been published. Of
Debate Pollution rituals in Sweden: the pursuit of a drug‐free society
The logic of Sweden's restrictive drug policy has led its advocates to promote increasingly extreme measures. Making the consumption of drugs not only a criminal offence but an imprisonable one has
Sweden's Syringe Exchange Debate: Moral Panic in a Rational Society
The distribution of clean syringes to intravenous drug users has been accepted by many European countries as a necessary measure to prevent the spread of HIV. In Sweden however an official report
Cleaning the people's home: recent developments in Sweden's addiction policy.
  • A. Gould
  • Political Science
    British journal of addiction
  • 1989
The Swedish attempt to create a drug-free society is linked with recent economic problems, a temperance tradition, and a strong cultural desire for order, which have contributed towards a climate which two pressure groups in particular have manipulated to their advantage.
Should Feminists Oppose Prostitution
Because sexuality is a social construction, individuals as individuals are not free to experience eros just as they choose. Yet just as the extraction and appropriation of surplus value by the
Just Institutions Matter: The Moral and Political Logic of the Universal Welfare State
Marx’s favourite author was reputedly Balzac, an author not of the left, but one who accurately reflected relations within the bourgeoisie. Trotsky similarly cautioned against judging art by the
The Erosion of the Welfare State: Swedish Social Policy and the EU*
  • A. Gould
  • Economics, Political Science
  • 1999
a section on the Swedish welfare state and the perceived impact of becoming a member of the EU, and another on the impact on EU social policy of Swedish participation. In conclusion it is suggested
Swedish Drug Policy: A Successful Model?
  • H. Tham
  • Political Science, Medicine
  • 1998
The shift in Swedish drug policy since around 1980 towards a more strict model has according to the official point of view been successful by comparison with the earlier, more lenient drug policy.