Last updated on: 2/4/2009 | Author:

Kathleen Barry, PhD Biography

Professor Emerita of Human Development at Pennsylvania State University
Con to the question "Should Prostitution Be Legal?"

“Female sexual slavery includes not only women in prostitution who are controlled by pimps, but wives in marriages who are controlled by husbands and daughters who are incestuously assaulted by fathers. My definition of female sexual slavery breaks away from traditional distinctions between ‘forced’ and ‘free’ prostitution and between wives and whores. When women and/or girls are held over time, for sexual use, they are in conditions of slavery. Specifically, female sexual slavery is not an illusive condition; the word ‘slavery’ is not merely rhetorical. Slavery is an objective social condition that requires escape in order for the victim to get out of it. Slavery is one aspect of the violation of women and children in prostitution, in marriage, and in families.

However, prostitution that is not pimp-controlled is not slavery. It is another form of sexual exploitation. Sexual exploitation and female sexual slavery are each different aspects or dimensions of the sexual relations of power in the patriarchal oppression of women.”

On The Issues, Summer 1995

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Professor Emerita, Human Development, Pennsylvania State University, 1988-present
  • Visiting Professor, Queen’s University, Belfast, Northern Ireland, 1997
  • Former Associate Professor, Sociology, Brandeis University
  • Co-Founder, Coalition Against Trafficking in Women (CATW)
  • Faculty Associates Award, Pennsylvania State University, 1997
  • W. Lamarr Kopp International Achievement Award, Pennsylvania State University International Programs, 1996
  • “100 People Who Have Changed the World for Women,” Marie Claire, 1995
  • Fulbright Award, 1995
  • PhD, Sociology, University of California, Berkeley, 1977
  • MA, School unknown
  • BA, School unknown
  • None found
Quoted in:
  1. Is Pornography Prostitution?