Do U.S. anti-prostitution laws encourage exploitation and
violence against women?
Author Alison Bass

Author Alison Bass

Would it surprise you to know that laws criminalizing prostitution are not only largely ineffective in curbing the sex trade, but are creating an atmosphere that encourages the exploitation of sex workers and violence against all women?

Getting Screwed, Sex Workers and the Law by professor and journalist Alison Bass, is a riveting assessment of how U.S. anti-prostitution laws harm the public health and safety of sex workers and other citizens—and affect larger societal attitudes toward women. Its revelations will interest feminists, sociologists, lawyers, health-care professionals, and policy makers, as well as those with an interest in American history and our society’s evolving attitudes toward sexuality and marriage.

Alison Bass is an award-winning journalist and long-time medical writer for The Boston Globe. Her articles and essays have also appeared in The Chicago Tribune, The Miami Herald, The Village Voice, Psychology Today, Technology Review, Readers Digest and numerous other newspapers and magazines around the country. A series she wrote for The Boston Globe on psychiatry was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize in the Public Service category. Bass has received a number of other journalism awards for her work, including the Top Media Award from the National Mental Health Association and two media awards from the Alliance for the Mentally Ill. In 2007, she won a prestigious Alicia Patterson Fellowship for her investigative work. She is an Assistant Professor of Journalism at West Virginia University. Bass is also the author of Side Effects: A Prosecutor, a Whistleblower, and A Bestselling Antidepressant on Trial, the true story of two women – a prosecutor and a whistleblower — who exposed the deception behind the making of a blockbuster drug. Learn more about…

Getting Screwed

Latest Updates

Nick Kristof is wrong about Backpage (and other things too)

Nick Kristof is at it again. On Sunday, the New York Times columnist wrote yet another column about sex trafficking that was filled with inaccuracies and misleading statements. He was writing about a new lawsuit filed by two young women who say they were trafficked as... read more

My upcoming book on sex work and the law

For the past four years, I have been working on a new book that is a departure from my previous book, Side Effects.  Tentatively titled Getting Screwed: Sex Work and the Law, the new book weaves the true stories of sex workers (past and present) together with the... read more