This paper explores why Japanese men engage in potentially risky commercial sexual behaviours while on holiday in Thailand. Semi-structured, in-depth interviews were conducted with 30 heterosexual male Japanese tourists, aged 19-36, who paid for sex with Thai women. Study participants were recruited at guesthouses in Bangkok. Analysis revealed eight main factors that encourage participation in commercial sex: a sense of freedom and anonymity during "time-out" spent travelling in a foreign country; a sense that there are permissive norms governing commercial sex in Thailand; the perceived sexual desirability of Thai women, a sense of economic and racial superiority relative to Thai women; a sense of loneliness or feeling in need of companionship; peer influence; the widespread availability of inexpensive sexual services in Thailand; and sexual desire or need. Findings indicate that Japanese male sexual conduct reflects individual drives while on holiday, in the context of interactions among Japanese peers, shaped by Thailand's socio-cultural environment.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Health(social science)
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health