Brothels in Blackpool: The Ordinary Neighbour?

I’m very excited to be giving a brown bag seminar at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) on Wednesday 23rd March at 1pm in CBCB 225B, based on my doctoral research.  Here is the abstract:

Brothels in Blackpool (UK): The Ordinary Neighbour?


Using a case study of brothels (dubbed locally as massage parlours) in residential areas of Blackpool, UK, this talk will do two things.  Firstly, it will highlight the diversity of the off-street market in this small locality, both in relation to the spatial manifestations of the brothels, and how they are viewed and discussed by surrounding residential communities.  Secondly, it will advocate for more localised ‘ordinary’ case studies to be included in sex work policy discussions (as well as the more widely discussed, and more well-known, cities such as Amsterdam) in order to open up more informed dialogues about the roles that sex work has in urban fabrics, and to seek ways of encouraging cohesion.


Emily Cooper is a Lecturer in Human Geography at Northumbria University. Her interests lie in the interaction of sex, space and society, with a particular focus on the experiences of living in close proximity to the sex industry. Emily’s doctoral research (completed at the Lancaster Environment Centre, Lancaster University in 2014) explored the impacts of brothels on residential communities in Blackpool. Other general research interests include: conflict and deviance in urban space, the geographies of stigma and exclusion in everyday life, liminal spaces and visual/cultural criminology.  She is also a member of the Sex Work Research Hub.