Selected Entries 2017

Unsocial Society

Sayon Sur
Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology | Dhaka

A sex worker is a person who works in the sex industry, specifically, a person who commercially trades in sex or sexual stimulation.

  • In Bangladesh, female sex workers and their children are ostracized by the wider community.
  • Children who live in brothels, a good number of them are shut out of school, increasing their vulnerability to becoming sex workers, as without an education they have few job alternatives.
  • Tanbazar and English road, the oldest and largest brothels in Bangladesh were evicted few years ago (2014) in the name of rehabilitation of sex workers. As a result of such eviction, a good number of sex workers shifted to different part of the country and started their same occupation in other brothels. Few of them are still moving here and there and living in a vulnerable situation and now-a-days they are coming back to the brothel with high court order of their legality.
  • Despite Religious & Social strictures on sex outside marriage, there are 100,000 women selling sex in Bangladesh and clients are surprisingly open about the fact that they visit them.

Bangladesh as of now has 18 registered brothels and around 200,000 active sex workers. However, almost every sex worker in Bangladesh does not come to the trade by choice. They are either born into it or sold into it – be it because hardship or coercion. Once they are in the trade, there is no looking back. Even when the trade is conducted in private, the crushing social stigma does not let them live the life worthy of a human.

Marginalization is a process whereby something or someone is pushed to the edge of a group accorded lesser importance. This is predominantly a social phenomenon by which minority or a sub-group is excluded, and their needs or desires ignored. A marginalized community represents a group that’s confined to the lower or peripheral edge of the society. Such a group is denied involvement in mainstream economic, political, cultural and social activities.


Key Factor

The Thesis mainly focuses on detail study of existing structure of these brothel system runs in Bangladesh. In a country like Bangladesh where social culture and values are determined by the running religious system, where visiting a brothel is socially banned, the existence of 14 brothels put a serious question among the values and the dying need of a system that sells sex along with other drugs. The Government approach towards brothel service and the eviction of Taanbazar and Kandupotti brothel has given birth to a serious rate of increasing floating sex worker that city citizen are facing day to day life as well through the sex workers into more serious business. Social status as well as economic benefit from a profession like these (found from physical survey as well by the NGO’s) pushes sex workers taking risky lifestyle. The existing imbalanced condition producing a worst scenario in the brothel which leads their lifestyle into more unhealthy as well unhygienic.

To understand the system, the economic chain runs in these area is crucial. Through these thesis Observational as well questionnaire surveys have been done to have a better understanding about their lifestyle as well the economic chain which derives all these situation. Findings from the survey put some key factor to initiate the thesis:

  • Creating homestead within a business area with required privacy and a healthy lifestyle.
  • Creating Opportunities for the sex workers to move forward (by physiological therapy for mental capability as well work opportunities)
  • Ensuring a safe and sound childhood for their upcoming babies( ensuring privacy and safe environment )
  • Open up the space outer wards ensuring security that may help both the sex worrkers as well neighborhoods.

Rethink about the formulation of their Living space as well as Working space.