Constructing the ‘respectable’ client and the ‘good’ researcher: The complex dynamics of cross-gender interviews with men who pay for sex

Monique Huysamen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)


Although illegal and highly stigmatised in South Africa, the buying and selling of sex on street corners, in brothels, in private domains or online is widespread. This reflexive methodological paper is the result of narrative interviews I conducted with 14 men who pay female sex workers for sex. It focuses on the complex cross-gender interview relationship that emerged when I, a feminist female researcher, interviewed men about their experiences of paying for sex. I reflect on the ways in which the interview became not only a context in which men could negotiate their masculinity in relation to their client identities in favourable ways, but also a context in which both the participants and I reproduced and performed dominant discourses of masculinity and femininity through our interactions with one another. The methodological implications of doing cross-gender research with men around issues of gender and sexuality are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-33
Number of pages15
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2016


  • Cross-gender research
  • Feminist research
  • Masculinity
  • Reflexivity
  • Sex Work

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gender Studies

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