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Sex Tourism in BahiaAmbiguous Entanglements$
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Erica Lorraine Williams

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780252037931

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252037931.001.0001

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Racial Hierarchies of Desire and the Specter of Sex Tourism

Racial Hierarchies of Desire and the Specter of Sex Tourism

(p.44) Chapter Two Racial Hierarchies of Desire and the Specter of Sex Tourism
Sex Tourism in Bahia

Erica Lorraine Williams

University of Illinois Press

This chapter explores the complexities of the racial hierarchies of desire in Salvador by articulating what it calls the specter of sex tourism. It examines the Brazilian ideologies of race that shape the sexual economies of tourism by introducing the concepts of racial democracy, whitening, and mestiçagem (racial and cultural mixing). It also considers the racialized erotics of tourism propaganda and the construction of the mulata (a woman of mixed black and white ancestry) as Brazil's national erotic icon. Finally, it discusses the ways in which Bahian women of African descent who are not engaged in sex work are implicated in the sexual economies of tourism because of assumptions about their licentiousness and availability.

Keywords:   racial hierarchies, race, sexual economies, racial democracy, whitening, racial mixing, tourism propaganda, mulata, sex tourism

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