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Selling Sex: Studying Nevada's Legal And Illegal Sex Industry



When news broke that former Los Angeles Lakers forward Lamar Odom was found unconscious at the Love Ranch brothel, it raised a lot of questions about prostitution in Nevada.

Those questions were clouded by hordes of reporters parachuting into Las Vegas to cover the story.

We read of coyotes howling in the night during the 90-minute ride to Pahrump’s brothels. We read of conniving prostitutes trying to eke money out of Odom, or stealing it outright as he lay unconscious.

But after those clichés, we heard little about the thing most people are curious about. Why are men, and some women, willing to pay for sex?
Is it loneliness? Is it adventure? Is it pathology?

And what’s the typical john or client like? And, why won’t we – meaning not just Nevada but the country as a whole -- acknowledge that sex is for sale, and some believe it’s integral to a tourist economy.

Click here: Barb Brents' research and survey

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Support comes from


Christina Parreira, PhD candidate, Sociology, UNLV; Barb Brents, professor of Sociology, UNLV; Andrew Spivak, associate professor of sociology, UNLV

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