Yeela Lahav-Raz (PhD) is an anthropologist, a senior lecturer in the Department of Sociology & Anthropology at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. She holds a master's degree in sociology and anthropology from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (2009) and a doctorate in sociology and anthropology from Ben-Gurion University (2016).
Her areas of expertise are gender and sexuality, digital anthropology and the intersections of gender and sexual politics, technological developments, and social deviance. For the last decade, she has been researching the regulations and politics of sex work, mainly in Israel. Her published studies include a range of topics: youth and young adults involved in prostitution; the masculine repertoires of sex industry clients; technological developments and their ramifications for sex work; the history of prostitution policy and regulation in Israel; the impact of digital media on sex work activism; and perceptions of sex workers towards legislative models, among others. Dr Lahav-Raz is also one of the co-founders of the Israeli Association for the Study of Prostitution, Sex Work and Sex Trafficking (2019).
During her postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Rhode Island (2017) and as a recipient of an ISF Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of Leicester (2018–2020), she has been researching sex tourism in the Middle East and the impact of the Global North policy regarding human trafficking on the development and adoption of prostitution regulation in the Middle East. In addition, she has recently begun a joint study with researchers from the Bob Shapell School of Social Work at Tel Aviv University, funded by the Schusterman Foundation, which deals with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on sex workers' aid organisations.
Photogarh: Shlomi Yosef