Noah Berlatsky on the Feminist Debate About Sex Work in Video Games


Rockstar Games

In her series of controversial videos critiquing sexism in video games, Anita Sarkeesian often focuses on the way games treat sex workers. Sarkeesian concludes that sex workers in many video games are viewed as commodities and objects, rather than as people—and that they are often targeted for violence. But as Noah Berlatsky notes, Sarkeesian appears to take on a familiar feminist position that doesn't grant the possibility that women have the agency to choose to participate in sex work, and for that she faces criticism from women who don't feel as though they are being unwillingly "prostituted" by men.