Control by Proxy: The Regulation of Indigenous Peoples and Settler Labour via Canadian Anti-Sex Work Laws, 1865-2016
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This study examines Canada’s history of anti-sex legislation from 1865 to 2016 and demonstrates that these laws exist primarily to maintain the ideological boundaries between whiteness and indigeneity. The study forwards a theory that accounts for the ways in which anti- sex work legislation assists in a) the appropriation of land through the removal and/or isolation of indigenous peoples and b) maintaining hegemonic control over settler labour. To this end, three time periods are identified in which violent settlement and the production of white, middle- class personhood were features of the regularization of capitalist-colonial rule, and where anti- sex work laws played a vital role in the management of instabilities manifested by indigenous activism and labour discontent: the consummation of the Canadian colonial system (1850 - 1900), industrialization (1900 - 1920) and neoliberalism (1970s - current). By examining the cur- rent and historical legislative framework regulating sex work, this study aims to demonstrate how both the legal framework and its enforcement act as proxies for controlling land and labour.