The purpose of this research is to explore the rise, tolerance and integration of sexual consumption and sexual labour displayed through the erotic dance industry which is symbolic of the commoditisation of the female body in late capitalism.

Examining how female sexuality has been commercialised and now merges easily with traditional forms of leisure in the city, provides a window into further understanding larger social issues such as the feminisation of poverty; the consequences of student debt and the impact of changes in Higher Education; the diversification of feminised employment patterns that rely on 'body work' and the impacts of new licensing regulations.

The aims of the project are to:

  • examine the supply of dancers, their experiences of dancing and their working conditions;
  • explore how industry management have 'mainstreamed' lap dancing and how it has become acceptable in the high street;
  • uncover the competing interests between erotic dance businesses, law enforcement and licensing processes.

The methodology consists of a survey of 300 dancers, with follow-up interviews, and interviews with industry management and regulators. To make comparisons between locations, a city and neighbouring town in the North of England have been chosen.



Start date
01 March 2010
End date
30 May 2011
Grant holder
Dr T Sanders
Grant amount
£79,144.18
Grant reference
RES-000-22-3163
Discipline
Sociology
Grant type