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See also: swerf



Acronym of sex worker exclusionary radical feminist, on the model of TERF.



English Wikipedia has an article on:

SWERF (plural SWERFs)

  1. (see usage notes) A sex worker-exclusionary radical feminist; a feminist who opposes the sex industry, particularly the production and distribution of pornography, typically viewing it as coercive or abusive of the women involved.
    • 2016, Giuliana Monteverde, "Navigating Complicity in Contemporary Feminist Discourse", in Exploring Complicity: Concept, Cases and Critique (eds. Afxentis Afxentiou, Michael Neu, & Robin Dunford), page 108:
      Conversely, many intersectional feminists see TERFs or sex worker exclusionary radical feminists (SWERFs) as bigots and bullies.
    • 2021, Julie Bindel, Feminism for Women: The Real Route to Liberation, unnumbered page:
      SWERFs (sex worker exclusionary radical feminists), they also dubbed us TERFs (transgender exclusionary radical feminists) because, as one protester shouted, 'Trans women sex workers of colour are dying thanks to SWERFs!'
    • 2022, Stacey Clare, The Ethical Stripper: Sex, Work and Labour Rights in the Night-Time Economy, unnumbered page:
      When national mainstream media outlets bought into the myth that lap-dancing clubs caused sexual violence in Camden, SWERFs gained huge ground in terms of public opinion about sex work, and with that came significant power.

Usage notes[edit]

This term is used mainly in critical discourse by sex-positive feminists and others who support the right to engage in sex work. Feminists who hold views opposed to the sex industry have maintained that the term is derogatory or a slur.[1]


  1. ^ Janice Turner, "Porn apologists are running out of excuses", The Times (UK), 17 December 2021

See also[edit]