Soliciting Sailors

The Temporal Dynamics of Dockside Prostitution in South Africa

This paper examines the temporal dynamics of dockside prostitution in South Africa. It assesses how foreign sailors' movements in and out of the country influence local prostitutes' solicitation strategies. It also considers the cultural legacies of their intimate engagements.

The paper focuses on two distinct temporal regimes that define sailors' experiences: the rapid turnaround cycle of Durban's container ship sector and the slower turnaround cycle of Cape Town's deep sea trawling sector.

It makes three sequentially related arguments: that sailors' temporal constraints dictate which solicitation techniques local prostitutes use; that solicitation techniques determine how culture is transmitted between the two ethnically alterior parties; and that the style of cultural transmission impacts how the sailors' cultures are ultimately received by the prostitutes and their communities.

JSASNote: This paper will be published in a forthcoming issue of the Journal of Southern African Studies. It will be available for subscribers to the Routledge: Taylor & Francis Group (on the Informaworld website), the publishers of JSAS. If you are a student, you should be able to download the article through a university computer. Your institution should have an account with JSAS.

Trotter, Henry, "Soliciting Sailors: The Temporal Dynamics of Dockside Prostitution in South Africa" Journal of Southern African Studies Vol.35, No.3 (Sept 2009): 699-713.