Cathrin Schauer: Kinder auf dem Strich

The problem with living in Germany and being a patron to the local library, and blogging in English is that I get to read really interesting books - which are available only in German. I usually then just leave them be and blog about something else, but recently I've read two books which I really want to write a review about. Maybe they will one day be translated, or you will get interested in the theme and find some books on the issues in English / your own language.


The first book is called "Kinder auf dem Strich" by Cathrin Schauer. The title translates to "Children on the game" and it talks about child prostitution on the German-Czech border. The author has worked in the region as a social worker for years. The book discusses the views of the different parties involved - the children, the pimps, the adult prostitutes, the buyers, the police and the general public.


It's very hard to read a book like this, if you care about children at all. It just tears one's hear to read what the 6-year old boy Frantisek, another child forced to prostitute himself, has to say. It's terrible to read about the way the local police closes their eyes from it. And it's awful to think that normal, good earning German men drive to the Czech Republic regularly and force children to fulfill their sexual needs.


The book is not looking for sensation nor is it written in a heartbraking way. The text and the information is kept as objective as it is humanely possible. It's based on real life, observation and discussions with the people involved - this is not a theoretical book in the least. It merely describes the situation, and challenges everyone to do their part in realising that organised child prostitution happens in Europe, in the European Union, not just Thailand or some other faraway places, and that we must all fight against it, in any way we can.


I'm doing my little part in posting this review. Maybe you'd like to read this book, or something similar to it, and see what you can do.

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