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Women’s History Month: Are the sex trade and feminism compatible? Iceland says “No.”

With March being Women’s History Month I can’t imagine a better way to celebrate than to recognize women who are making history as we speak.  Women in Iceland are doing just that.

Iceland is being hailed as the world’s most feminist country.  There are several factors that seem to support this designation.  Many of us cheered the election of Johanna Sigurdardottir as Prime Minister of Iceland. Not just because she is a woman, but also because she is a gay woman.  Johanna erodes the patriarchal norm like no other.  So, not only does she break leadership barriers, but she is a symbol of sexual freedom; a reminder that women do not exist solely for the sexual pleasure of males and the creation of progeny.

In addition to PM Sigurdardottir’s political achievements, women are also represented in their government in significant numbers.

Iceland, and these other Scandinavian countries, are establishing strong precedents about how women should be treated throughout the world.  Strong and abundant representation by and for women is resulting in groundbreaking paths for legislation addressing the treatment of women in society.  Nowhere is this more evident than in the recent efforts to shut down the sex industry.

Imagine a world without a sex trade.  It appears that Scandinavian women are more acutely aware of the driving forces behind sex workers who find themselves trapped in such jobs.  The patriarchy benefits when women acquiesce to being entertainment for male sexual gratification.  The greater damage comes when women buy into the myth that female sex workers willingly participate.  It is this fundamental acknowledgment that underlies the efforts of Iceland’s political leadership to erode the cultural view of women and their sexual role.

What do you think?