Regulating Prostitution in China: Gender and Local Statebuilding, 1900-1937

By Elizabeth J. Remick | Go to book overview

Notes

INTRODUCTION

1. On the importance of regulating prostitution to the expansion of the British empire, see Levine (2003) and Howell (2009). On the building blocks of the prostitution regulation system in France, see Harsin (1985), and on the control of venereal disease via regulating prostitution as a basic project of the modern European state, see Baldwin (1999).

2. On debates among feminist views about the causes and meanings of prostitution in China, see Jeffreys (2004, ch. 3).

3. On the hierarchy of prostitution in Shanghai, see Hershatter (1989) and Henriot (1996). 4. For more on the connection between masculinity and patronizing prostitutes in contemporary China, as well as the connection between prostitution and men’s ways of doing business, see Uretsky (2008). On the same subject in South Korea, see Cheng (1998).

5. On the different legal statuses of women and men as property during Qing times and the Republic, see Gronewold (1985), Hershatter (1991), Jaschok (1988), Jaschok and Miers (1994), and Watson (1991).

6. On women escaping marital families, see also Gronewold (1985, 42–43).

7. Work by Jaschok (1988) and Gronewold (1985) situates prostitution in the overall system of gender relations in late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century China in a very general sense. Sommer (2000) explores prostitution in the context of changing laws about sex crimes in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Sichuan, before the advent of regulation. Social histories of prostitution in Guangzhou include Ho’s work on opera, gambling and prostitution (Ho 1993, 2001, 2005) and Chin’s work (2012) on campaigns to control and contain emerging forms of female labor and sexuality both in Guangzhou and in Hong Kong. Lipkin (2006) examines the attempts of officials in the Republican capital city, Nanjing, to control its éléments déclassés—beggars, rickshaw pullers, and prostitutes—including the capital’s decade-long campaign to abolish and criminalize prostitution. Brief glimpses of state attempts to deal with prostitution during the period can also be found in Stapleton (2000), Carroll (2006), Wang, D. (2003), and Dong (2003), among others.

8. The Chinese-language literature on prostitution has burgeoned since the mid-1990s. Some of it is sociological (sexological) research about current prostitution, such as the work of Pan Suiming; some of it is historical (Wu Zhou 1990; Xiu Jun and Jian Jin 1993); and some of it is both (Shan Guangnai 1995). Shan in particular includes case studies from all around China to illustrate variation in practice. There is also a fair amount of literature that purports to be scholarly but verges on the pornographic, including reprints of classics like Wang Shunu ([1935] 2004) with very explicit illustrations added to the original (illustration-free) text. In addition to these macro-level histories, quite a lot of information about local practices of prostitution and its regulation can be found in the memoir (wenshi ziliao) literature, for example Wenshi jinghua bianjibu (1997). Other historical research on particular locales includes Li Jinlong (2000) on Beijing; Jiang Jianguo (2006) on Guangzhou; and Wei (1998) on Yangzhou.

9. The authors cited here on Europe are actually trying to make the point that it was difficult for women to remove themselves from the official prostitution registration lists because

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