Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Granting Department


Major Professor

Kevin A. Yelvington


Caribbean, ethnography, HIV/AIDS prevention, Jamaica, sex tourism, sex work


This ethnography explores the practice of sex tourism in Negril, Jamaica, and its sociocultural, economic, and health impacts on the popular tourist destination. Transactional sex with female tourists has become a popular income generator for some young Caribbean males who are excluded from formal employment in the region's leading industry. Like other resort locales, Negril draws both men and women from various parts of the country who choose to engage in sex work in order to benefit from the tourist dollars spent in Jamaica's third most popular resort area. Through the analysis of observations, interviews with residents, tourists, government officials, and health practitioners, as well as life histories of men involved in sex tourism, this study seeks to contribute to current literature on the practice and reveal its impact on the people of this particular locale. Additionally, relevant health data is utilized to examine the connection between sexual health and sex tourism locally, and to offer recommendations for effectively targeting male sex workers through risk reduction programs. This research takes a political economy perspective and applies relevant theoretical contributions from the anthropology of tourism, Caribbean gender theory, and gender performativity.