Stefan Ranoszek

Date of this Version



Nancy Hirschmann


This project combines an analytic normative framework, drawing from Martha Nussbaum’s capabilities approach, with field research – including a 67-participant survey study of sex workers in Cape Town – to investigate regulatory models for the commercial sex industry in in South Africa. Though this paper advocates, based both on normative principles and empirical findings, for the full decriminalisation of sex work, arguments for its partial decriminalisation are given significant attention through analysis of Carole Pateman and Elizabeth Anderson’s alienation theories. By considering survey study findings through a capabilities lens this project shows that the full decriminalisation of sex work would, more effectively than other regulatory models, protect South Africa’s sex workers, promote their central human capabilities, and unequivocally affirm their equal dignity.



Date Posted: 19 May 2021


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