Survival sex, commonly understood to be the exchange of sex for material support, is a practice that is associated with young homeless women. However, such a narrow definition of survival sex fails to recognise the multiple, complex, and coexisting motivations of young homeless women for engaging in intimate relationships in post-industrial capitalist society.
In Youth Homelessness and Survival Sex, Watson’s insightful analysis of personal narratives reveals how young homeless women are exposed to situations in which survival can be impeded or assisted by playing out specific gender roles. Indeed, in identifying and contesting the dominant social discourses that young homeless women draw upon to frame their experiences of intimate affairs, Watson challenges the reader to understand how gendered subjectivities are produced and performed through heteronormative relationships. This enlightening book is vital in showing that homelessness is not a gender-neutral phenomenon and that there are gender-specific processes and practices involved in the navigation of poverty, violence, and social exclusion.
Youth Homelessness and Survival Sex will appeal to undergraduate and postgraduate students, as well as postdoctoral researchers, interested in fields such as Homelessness, Youth Studies, Social Work, and Gender Studies.