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Prostitution, Sexuality, and the Law in Ancient Rome$
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Thomas A. J. McGinn

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780195161328

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195161328.001.0001

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Civic Disabilities

Civic Disabilities

The Status of Prostitutes and Pimps as Roman Citizens

Chapter:
(p.21) 2 Civic Disabilities
Source:
Prostitution, Sexuality, and the Law in Ancient Rome
Author(s):

Thomas A. J. McGinn (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195161328.003.0002

The disabilities that were imposed on prostitutes and pimps constitute infringements on their rights and their standing as Roman citizens. This chapter examines a segment of these: disabilities relating to political and social life, on the one hand, and to the operation of the courts, on the other. Citizenship is an ambiguous concept, one of whose basic functions is to discriminate. Like many such definitions ancient and modern, that of Roman citizenship was informed by certain criteria that excluded individuals from the category that it defined. The definition is of necessity complicated by the fact that, once the dividing line between citizen and non-citizen was drawn, the definition did not stop there but articulated a range of differences on the citizen side of the line.

Keywords:   ancient Rome, prostitution, civic disabilities, women, citizenship, prostitutes, pimps, Infamia, honor

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