Flower Boats & Working Girls

Flower Boats & Working Girls - A Historical Overview of Prostitution in Hong Kong

Prostitutes were among the first women to migrate to Hong Kong after 1841. By the 1870s, it was estimated that one in four Chinese women resident in the colony were prostitutes of some description.

Brothels remained licenced until the 1930s, and until that era the trade enjoyed considerable regularization – and even a measure of respectability.

In this lecture we will explore the legal and social position of prostitutes in Hong Kong up until recent years, with specific reference to Chinese and European experiences of the trade.