Welwyn campaigner hits out at ‘glamourisation’ of prostitution

Ruth Jacobs with her new book Soul Destruction: Unforgivable

Ruth Jacobs with her new book Soul Destruction: Unforgivable - Credit: Archant

A CAMPAIGNER and author from Welwyn released her first novel last week, hoping to dispel myths about prostitution.

Ruth Jacobs, 39, wrote her first novel, Soul Destruction: Unforgivable, to focus on the dark world of prostitution, abuse and drug addiction.

Ms Jacobs, who is an anti-sexual exploitation campaigner, wrote the book after becoming angry at the way she believes prostitution has been glamorised in popular culture.

The book charts the life of Shelley Hansard, a call girl haunted by an abusive childhood, hooked on heroin and crack cocaine which is fuelling her psychosis.

“The entertainment industry has glamorised the world of prostitution and made it almost seem to be an empowerment choice for women,” she said.

“But the truth for many, many women out there is that they are caught in a spiral of abuse, often involving drug addiction, and for some, they are controlled by pimps selling them for sex to line their own pockets.

“Movies such as Pretty Woman have distorted the reality that women in prostitution in real life are often beaten, raped and trapped in a cycle of abuse.”

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While studying at university in the late 1990s, Ms Jacobs, as part of her course, started researching prostitution and how it affects people. Friends of hers entered the profession as a way of making money, and saw first hand what the reality for many women is far from the glamourous world it is sometimes pictured as.

In July 2012, she published ‘In Her Own Words... Interview with a London Call Girl’, a transcription of a video interview she undertook in 1998 with a woman who worked as a London call girl and then started working on a longer project.

The result was Soul Destruction: Unforgivable, the first in a fiction series of books and she is currently working on the second having just sold the translation rights to the series.