Gender, Place & Culture
In 1997, the International Sex Workers Foundation for Arts, Culture and Education (ISWFACE) began the process of purchasing a historic parlor house brothel (the Dumas) in Butte, Montana to create a cultural center and museum. This business transaction drew national and international attention while Butte citizens questioned the presence of ISWFACE in their community. Using media accounts of the Dumas, I examine the framing of sex work and its place in the heritage tourism landscape of the American West. The case of the Dumas captures the complicated relationship between history, a community, tourism and the media on local as well as national/international levels. Sex work is part of the historical landscape of the American West, but is fading from view as communities actively shape their public image, erasing this element from their landscapes.
Dando, Christina E., "‘Whore-friendly people’: heritage tourism, the media and the place of sex work in Butte, Montana" (2009). Geography and Geology Faculty Publications. 20.