66 thoughts on “If Spiderman were a sex worker

  1. Rahul, Just as desi construction workers are treated horribly in Dubai, we know that physicians are a different story. So, the same is true in other areas–the Russian chick at the Hyatt is there to make $$, and not at all comparable to the the horrible conditions that other women find themselves in.

  2. the Russian chick at the Hyatt is there to make $$, and not at all comparable to the the horrible conditions that other women find themselves in.

    I agree there are different tiers, but (a) it is not obvious to me that the Russian chick at the Hyatt hasn’t been trafficked or isn’t being exploited in similar conditions by either their clients of their night or their runners/pimps, and (b) as Sudhir Venkatesh points out, even high priced escorts, who are at an ethereal stratum as compared to the women you mention, are victims of abuse from their (often long-term) clients.

  3. I’m realistic enough to think that Venkatesh is not on about nothing, but his claim that “I wanted to disrupt the glamorous view of women at the higher-end” should also caution our interpretation of his “findings”–he clearly has an agenda going in. The Russkies at the 5-star hotel clubs in Dubai are pretty clearly on their own tip; not sure why that burns you up so much.

  4. The Russkies at the 5-star hotel clubs in Dubai are pretty clearly on their own tip; not sure why that burns you up so much.

    It doesn’t burn me up in the least, no idea where you got that :)

    I also don’t know how it is “so clear” – the notion that people ply the sex trade in a location on a regular basis “on their own tip” is certainly possible, but one certainly does have to wonder about Russian/Armenian etc. girls hanging around night after night at a Dubai hotel selling something illegal being unaccountable freelancers.

    should also caution our interpretation of his “findings”–he clearly has an agenda going in.

    Well, if we are going to divine motives instead of looking at observables (pp. 17-19) to dismiss inconvenient facts, I am sure one can find strong reasons to discount anecdotes by participants about free-willed women in the flower of their youth joyously indulging in free trade of favors.

  5. Rahul, Why are you so weird on this topic? The Russian women hanging out at hotel clubs are there to make $$, which they do. What’s so difficult to understand? One plus one equals two.

  6. What’s so difficult to understand?

    Yes, Sudhir Venkatesh’s documented testimony is questionable, but expressing reasonable doubt about your claims of free agency based on your fly-by-night meetings is weird, even after I have explained the reason for my skepticism in detail :)

    Anyways, this back and forth isn’t going anywhere, and nothing is more painful than questioning convenient illusions and fantasies, be it about the sum of one and one, or otherwise, so I’ll stop here.

  7. I have no interest in rob being smacked down by the moderators.

    FWIW, I’d love to watch (but only if it’s truly consensual).

  8. My take: 1. The women might be pudgy because Indians have an obesity problem–our metabolisms are geared to help us survive drought and famine. 2. Rahul derailed the thread– 3. I love Bubba’s last comment.

  9. This thread has no doubt been hijacked by Rob, in order to defend his one casual observation that he made in Dubai of some unknown people soliciting sex from east european prostitutes. He has made this one anecdote his basis for ‘truthiness’ repeating it n-number of times like the fox news, while calling many of the in-depth journalism and statistics report provided by me , Rahul and others as isolated examples. It takes much more to admit publicly that one’s argument might not be sounds rather than rabidly defend a minor point. Globally, sex-trafficking is a major problem and involves east europeans in wretched conditions in first world (again read Kristof)…that doesn’t make the anecdote you provided a lie, but drawing broad generalizations for all women in clubs in Dubai and Thailand enjoying this condition is absolutely wrong. Winning a debate is not everything …

  10. the rob bashing here is out of control.

    Rob totally deserves the contempt for spewing endless lies and BS in this forum, which always have the intent to impress readers with his supposed elitism. Thus this sexually starved south indian with fair-skin fetish wants us to know that he finds indian prostitutes “horrible” and “low end”, so “everyone” has to travel to Dubai or Bangkok for “high end” hookers (read fair-skinned non-desi hos from Russia, far east and elsewhere), even though indian johns like him aren’t exactly welcome in these places. But he is willing to put up with the humiliations just for the chance to get serviced by non-desi whores. Sad really, yet he thinks he is being impressive.

  11. I don’t mean to downplay the problem of coercion in the sex-industry (it does exist!), but you can’t just rely on examples like that–there are too many mid-20′s women willing to go on a long beach-front vacation (sans pimp) for that to be true–nuance, please!

    Please. These women (in the vid) are not going on long beach-front vacations. For that they would have to be tall, physically fit and gorgeous. These women are servicing a demographic further down on the totem pole.

    Their clientele, by the way, is not too picky about physique, hence they don’t have to obsess over their size and they can eat what they want. There’s a market in India for women who look like them.

  12. Whoa, “Uncle John,” it’s uncanny how you nailed me there–I guess I’m just an “open book.” It’s terrible what one can come to when one is not “grounded.”

  13. Rob totally deserves the contempt for spewing endless lies and BS in this forum, which always have the intent to impress readers with his supposed elitism. Thus this sexually starved south indian with fair-skin fetish wants us to know that he finds indian prostitutes “horrible” and “low end”, so “everyone” has to travel to Dubai or Bangkok

    Huh? where do you get this garbage about Rob’s character…sorry haven’t seen this in anything he said. I believe Prema, this is you again projecting your insecurities on someone else.

  14. Well, is there anyone here at all who’s more concerned about the total lack of technique on display here? I personally wouldn’t be too fearful of these ladies. I mean, a few karate classes and suddenly they’re confident they can escape attackers?

    Many martial arts and self-defense classes are more about instilling a sense of self-confidence than an actual ability to defend oneself, IMHO, and just judging by what’s being presented in the video, these ladies are getting short-shrift.

    I think it’s great they’re doing something self-empowering. I think it might be dangerous if they’re not as adequately trained as they might think they are. It’s not their fault–it’s whoever their instructor is, because that horse stance / reverse punch crap ain’t gonna help nobody in a real damn fight.

  15. Well, is there anyone here at all who’s more concerned about the total lack of technique on display here?

    No. ‘Cos everyone starts as a frickin white belt. And white belts are not known for their technique are they? And some basic technique, confidence and exercise is always useful. And lets keep things in context. These ladies are not going up against spetnaz personnel steeped in Sambo. If the training shows them enough to deal with a drunk out of shape customer, instead of just cowering, it is a big plus. Also does’nt training together build a sense of community? And if there is strong group of people willing to fight back as one what can a solitary troublemaker do?

  16. Not only sex workers; the aam aurat and aan larki is taking up martial arts to fight of Adams and roadside “Romeos”.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pUqF9uzr-Mc&feature=fvsre3

    You go grrrlzzzz!!!

    And this Mumbai principal got EXACTLY what he deserved (a bloodied face) from this horde of angry women. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5jXPvSpv7_k

    Words cannot begin to describe the feelings of pridea and joy that are rising within me to know that the sleeping giant/lion (Indian women) is finally waking up……. and with a roar!!!