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JUDYXYC's avatar

How many katoeys are there in thailand ?

Asked by JUDYXYC (31points) March 22nd, 2009

I find it amazing about [10s of thousands?] of katoeys in thailand is this true? what is the real number of katoeys in thailand? And why is this culture thriving in that country? How did this culture begin in that part of the world?

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marinelife's avatar

It is really hard to find an accurate number. Here is one guy who lives in Thailand’s analysis. Excerpt:

“Phuket’s high season population is estimated to be around 500,000. If 5,000 of them are ladyboys then that would be 1% of the population. That would seem a little unlikely but not totally inconceivable. But he said 5,000 actually working in the sex industry. Where was this army of available katoeys?

Simon Cabaret Ladyboy ShowAt Soi Katoey in Bangla, there are always a few dancing at the front of the soi. There is another katoey bar at the back and Moulin Rouge ladyboy show. But surely even at the highest estimate, there could not be more than 50 katoeys working in Soi Katoey. There are maybe another 30 performing at Simon Cabaret – does that even count as the sex industry? For the sake of argument, let’s say it does. Then there is the gay area around Soi Paradise. There are quite a few katoeys around this area but I think an estimate of 100 would be very generous.

There are a few katoeys freelancing at various locations, mostly along the beachfronts where they annoy passing drunks. But really, they are not there in very high numbers. Let’s be generous again and say 100. Have I missed any? Maybe there are a few dotted around other sex establishments.

So even if we round up my figures, we have a very generous guesstimate of 300 katoeys active in the sex industry. I actually think that is probably extremely generous. A lot of the above figures are probably the same katoeys moving from location to location and I think I have overestimated all my guesses. The total figure could be as few as 100.

So I am saying somewhere between 100–300 katoeys working in Phuket’s sex industry. Certainly not 5,000 but then a figure of 100 would not make good press.”

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