This Friday, April 11th at 8 pm ET / 5 pm, Sex Out Loud features Melissa Gira Grant, writer and freelance journalist whose latest book is Playing The Whore: The Work of Sex Work. Based on ten years of writing and reporting on the sex trade, and grounded in her experience as an organizer, advocate, and former sex worker, Grant dismantles pervasive myths about sex work, criticizes both conditions within the sex industry and its
criminalization, and argues that separating sex work from the “legitimate” economy only harms those who perform sexual labor. The interview was recorded live at CatalystCon East 2014.
Melissa Gira Grant is a writer and freelance journalist, covering sexuality, politics, and technology. She lives in New York. Her book, Playing the Whore: The Work of Sex Work (Verso, 2014) challenges the myths about selling sex and those who make them. Her reporting and commentary appears in The Nation, Wired, The Atlantic, Glamour, The Guardian, In These Times, The Washington Post, Dissent, Slate, Salon, The American Prospect, Reason, Jezebel, and Valleywag, among other publications, and she’s a contributing editor at Jacobin. Her other books include Take This Book: A History of the People’s Library at Occupy WallStreet, in 2011 through my own media label Glass Houses, and Coming & Crying (Glass Houses, 2010), an anthology of true stories about sex (co-edited with Meaghan O’Connell). She speaks regularly to audiences worldwide at institutions such as Duke University, the New School, Third Wave Foundation, the Open Society Foundations, Eyebeam Art + Technology Center, and the UC Berkeley Labor Center, and at events including South by Southwest Interactive (SXSW), re:publica (Berlin), NEXT (Copenhagen), and the International AIDS Conference. She co-organizes the podcast series Nostalgia for the Net. Her story “Before Departure,” a collaboration with photographer Fette Sans and published by Abe’s Penny, was acquired by the Museum of Modern Art Library in 2013. She’s also been a member of the Exotic Dancers’ Union (SEIU Local 790), and a staff member at St. James Infirmary (the only occupational health and safety clinic in the United States run for and by sex workers).