A Cambridge University economics lecturer has championed prostitution, saying people with a “great body” should be able to make money by honing their “erotic skills”.
Victoria Bateman called on economists to fight against “irrational societal norms” and help prostitutes “benefit from markets that work with them”.
Writing in the Times Higher Education magazine, Bateman said: “There is a logical inconsistency with the way that we think about consensual prostitution – a largely female trade – compared with the male-dominated spheres of soldiering and boxing – all of which come at significant risk to the body and the brain.”
Bateman, who contends that society is comfortable with intellectuals “pimping their brains”, continued: “And since women have traditionally been seen as inferior, it has been assumed that making money from the female-associated body is less respectable than making it from the male-associated brain.
“The inconsistent treatment of a largely female profession compared with largely male professions is nothing other than sexism under the cover of ‘well-meaning’ paternalism,” the Gonville and Caius college academic added.
“Those engaging in consensual sex work need to be helped to benefit from markets that work with them rather than against them. And economists are best placed to recognise that and fight for change.”
It is not the first time the economist has sparked controversy.
Bateman hit the headlines last year when she attended a two-hour university meeting naked with “Brexit leaves Britain naked” written across her breasts and stomach.