Limpopo Crossings

Greta Schuler – doctoral candidate

Limpopo Crossings is a research project centred around a series of trips taken by the researcher, Greta Schuler, with migrant sex workers from South Africa to Zimbabwe. The work will inform Schuler’s doctoral dissertation and literary nonfiction book, Tricky Business, about the lives of Zimbabwean migrant sex workers in South Africa. The work builds on Schuler’s master’s thesis in forced migration, “At Your Own Risk”: Narratives of Zimbabwean Migrant Sex Workers in Hillbrow and Discourses of Vulnerability, Agency, and Power‘, which explored self-representations of migrant sex workers.

In South Africa, female cross-border migrant sex workers face challenges as women in a patriarchal society, as foreigners in a place tightening restrictions on immigration, and as criminals under South African law. This often marginalised group faces further challenges, including access to health care, because of stigma and stereotypes of migrants and sex workers.

Limpopo Crossings, and the subsequent Tricky Business, will not only depict details of the lived experiences of migrant sex workers but will also challenge stereotypes by providing profiles of three migrant sex workers.

About Greta Schuler

Greta Schuler is a PhD candidate in creative writing and a doctoral fellow at the African Centre for Migration and Society (ACMS). Her dissertation focuses on the lives of migrant sex workers in Johannesburg.

With ACMS’s MoVE project, Greta is facilitating creative writing workshops with sex workers and running the Gauteng sex worker newsletter, Izwi Lethu: Our Voice. Greta’s short stories and essays have appeared in various literary journals, including Creative Nonfiction, the Crab Orchard Review, and PANK (online). She holds an MA in Forced Migration from the University of the Witwatersrand and an MFA in Creative Writing from American University, Washington, DC.