In Laura Maria Agustin’s Sex at the Margins, power-knowledge is exercised over individuals by way of controlling institutions and is carried out through such things as punishment, education, and protection. This utilization of power-knowledge as a method to understand “the cult of domesticity and attached ideas of moral reclamation and regulation” was interesting, especially with its application to sex work (Agustin 99). A startling example that was illustrated in “Rise of the Social” and thoroughly discussed in class was with respect to women who are active in charity. Agustin points out how a paradox is created because the women involved in philanthropic causes are generally from the middle- and upper-class. The question that was whether this was self-police and policing of others was raised. Was it that some women were morally superior? In other words, with relation to sex work or ‘prostitution,’ can it be seen that the women who want freedom and autonomy in some fashion restrain the freedom of “bad women.” Moreover, in connection to how women may have felt the need to go out and carve out their own profession, it seems plausible that women’s role in the 18th and 19th century as caregivers in the realm of home was a catalyze in propelling women into charity work. Nevertheless, is Agustin’s argument still valid and is she perhaps too harsh on the people doing good, considering that her argument is that by doing good someone else is always punished? In general, however, “Rise of Social” seemed to be in some manners disconnected. The main themes were the victims’ discourse, Foucault’s power-knowledge, and families entering the public sphere.
With regards to the Fox News film clip, it was undoubtedly a sensationalized health project that projected sex work in an inherently biased fashion. With a conservative right spin, the clip illustrated a situation that compounded the degree of danger the sex workers experienced by stating how it was a human rights issue...
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