Lives of Prostitutes in Hat Yai before the Tourism Boom (before 1977)

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Sarut Petchsakunwong

Abstract

      The article aims to present diversity and changes of the business of prostitution in Hat Yai and lives of prostitutes in Hat Yai before the tourism boom before 1977. The study found that factors affecting the prostitutes’ lives most were the styles of services they rendered which could be divided, according to the changes, into the following two periods: before 1957 and from 1957 to 1977 : (1) Before 1957, most prostitutes were middle-aged women from South Thailand who mostly delivered services to local men. Most of them were freelance prostitutes servicing in small hotels. Others were prostitutes working in brothels with Pa Sai Brothels as the cheapest place and where prostitutes were most oppressed. However, prostitutes working at Mae Ri’s Brothel were considered to be high-class and trained in terms of manners, dancing and dressing. Thus, their services were the most expensive., (2) From 1957 to 1977, most prostitutes were young girls from North Thailand bought through a broker system as a result of the Prostitution Act, 1960, which aimed at eliminating freelance prostitutes. The number of foreign men seeking sexual services increased in the decade starting from 1967, resulting in more brothels of the same style as Mae Ri’s Brothel and being classified into Ban Ying (Women’s house) Grade 2, Ban Ying Grade 3, and Ban Ying Yuk Mai (Modern women’s house). Massage businesses also began in this period, leading to different groups of prostitutes with their own styles of services, and having freedom to live their lives. They were also different in terms of the relationships with the business owners and with the men who bought services from them.

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บทความวิจัย (Research Articles)

References

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