Is lap dancing harmless fun that provides entertainment for men, as well as well-paid, self-empowering work for women? The lap-dancing industry has long argued that it offers an everyday service within free market guidelines, but in 2010 the UK government legislated that lap-dancing venues in the UK should be classified as “sex establishments.”
So, are lap dancers sex workers rather than exotic dancers? What attracts so many women to work in that industry? Are women being sexually exploited and their bodies used as objects for male gratification?
Media depictions of lap dancers often fall prey to caricatured and stereotypical images. Having worked as a lap dancer herself, Jennifer Hayashi Danns knows about the industry from direct experience. In Stripped, she tells her story, and gives voice to many others who have either worked in the clubs or been affected directly by what goes on in them. In sometimes raw, direct language, the various contributors express their knowledge of the lap-dancing industry and the impact it has had on their lives. These compelling narratives give dramatic views into a secretive and largely undisclosed world, peeling away some of the gloss on the surface, and revealing the often seedy and desperate reality of the lap-dancing industry. The second part of the book offers insightful commentary, analysis and solutions.