Case Studies – Debates about the ethics of the Tearoom Trade Study Methodology. In the ‘s PhD student in sociology Laud Humphreys studied men who. In the ‘s, sociology doctoral student Laud Humphreys conducted the infamous Tearoom Trade Study [2]. Humphreys’ goal was to. Tearoom Trade: Impersonal Sex in Public Places. 2. \; f! ri. ‘; i’. ~j. ~. ” I. I.j. Ij. ‘e.:~ f :’ t. lAUD HUMPHREYS. ‘”,. “,. At shortly after five o’clock on a weekday.

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Others have said no researcher should have such power over others, no matter how good their intentions are. Retrieved from ” https: Humphregs this time, sodomy accounted for the majority of homosexual arrests. He is noted for his research into sexual encounters between men in public bathrooms, published as Tearoom Trade and for the questions that emerged from what many believe to be unethical research methods.

Table of Contents Key questions Example of harm from social science research – Research merit and integrity Justice Special protections for vulnerable communities Ethics Trace If conducted appropriately, research studies provide the foundation of new and insightful sources of knowledge.

The tearoom activities were impersonal. The watchqueen would alert the other men in the tearoom if a passerby approached and would notify them when it was safe to proceed again.

Laud Humphreys

Impersonal Sex in Public Placesan ethnographic study of anonymous male-male sexual encounters in public toilets a practice known as “tea-rooming” in U. The University of Wisconsin. Firstly, Humphreys believed that a scientist should never neglect an area of study or phenomenon because it was difficult to investigate or inherently socially sensitive. Becker at Northwestern University from”Humphreys was enormously influential on graduate students and younger scholars in the field of deviance, ethnography, and what we called ‘participant observation’.


This survey allowed him to formulate an idea of the home life of subjects in his study. This study focuses on these interactions through investigation of possible social, psychological, or physiological reasons grade this behavior. The advantages that made tearooms appealing to the men who participated were the inexpensive and liberating nature of the interaction, the impersonal sexual gratification that twaroom the activity, and the speed and efficiency that allowed participants to quickly enter and exit the tearooms.

In [ citation needed ]the presidential session at the Society for the Study of Social Problems SSSP was devoted to honoring Humphrey’s pioneering work on sexuality. Humphreys got his information by acting as “watch queen”, playing the role of lookout and warning the men if anyone was coming. He was associate professor of sociology at Pitzer Collegein Claremont, CA, from ; he earned full professorship at Pitzer inwhere he worked until aboutwhen he began to focus humphgeys his psychotherapist practice.

On himphreys that his notes could have been seized to identify men engaged in illegal acts said he would have risked going to jail rather than hand them over.

An Exchange”, in Norman K. Prophet of homosexuality and sociology.

Humphreys revealed his role to some of those he observed, but he noted that those who tended to talk with him openly were better educated; as he continued his research, he decided to conceal his identity in order to avoid response bias.

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In the event that law enforcement saw fit to arrest Humphreys for conducting this controversial study, the sensitive data he meticulously collected would be demanded by the authorities. Skip to main teariom. In addition to preventing unwarranted exposure to bystanders, these men also valued isolated facilities to protect their identities.

Schacht notes that this fact “makes it one of the best selling books ever written by a sociologist.

There were several different roles that a man might take on during a tearoom interaction. His book won the C.

The Tearoom Trade | SexInfo Online

After returning to graduate school, he received his Ph. Impersonal sex in public places. Portraying himself as a social health researcher he interviewed them under false pretences to gain information on their marital status, sexuality and sexual orientations and occupations.

One advantage of tearooms that appealed to a portion of the subjects was that it was rare for insertees to demand monetary compensation from the insertor. My library Help Advanced Book Search. Brekhus, and David P.

For most of the rest of his life, he was in private practice, although he and Miller co-authored humphhreys about gay subcultures and victims of violent homophobia.