More sexual Giffen goods

These demand curves are the exception rather than the rule, but nonetheless they appear to exist:

One sex worker…explained why she no longer offered her favorite clients free sex or cheaper rates: "They pretend to be flattered, but they never come back!…There was one client I had who was so sexy, a tai-chi practitioner, and really fun to ****.  Since good sex is a rare thing, I told him I’d see him for $20 (my normal rate is $250).  Another guy, he was so sexy, I told him "**** for free."  Both of them freaked out and never returned…They don’t believe they can have no-strings-attached sex, which is why they pay.  They’d rather pay than get it for free."

That is from The Purchase of Intimacy, by Viviana Zelizer.  I take the main point of this book to be yes you can love your prostitute and perhaps you can like your maid as well.  A commercial transaction is compatible with holding deeper feelings for the other party.

Here is a Richard Epstein review of the book.  I liked the book, but it is sad that the current debate needs such a tract.  Here is my previous post on Giffen goods.


Comments for this post are closed