The hidden world of prostitution in Ireland

In the weekend’s Irish Times edition, Kate Holmquist reported on the sex trade in Ireland. The campaign to stamp out prostitution is becoming more high profile, thanks to organisations like SPACE International, and books like Rachel Moran’s “Paid for: My Journey Through Prostitution”. When I tweeted about this article this morning, it was one of the highest clicked links, according to bit.ly. Hmmm, nice Sunday morning reading then.

Sex sells, as the saying goes. Readers with a talent for PR advise me to emphasise this side in my book: my protagonist, Nairi, flees to Argentina during WW1 and ends up in a brothel, where her daughter is born. Catarina grows up in the shadows of the brothel, watching men tango dance as they wait. It is the classic story of women displaced after war, victims who end up vulnerable and exploited. It is still the case now, according to Holmquist’s article, where an ex-prostitute tells of seeing 18 year olds being abused by 60 year old men. In Ireland. Now. In Dublin 4.

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