A Place Where Fantasies Come True

Last week Swedish television aired a 52-minute documentary by filmmaker Svante Tidholm entitled Like a Pascha. The documentary reveals an eleven-storey, clear-blue building in the middle of Cologne, Germany’s fourth largest city. It could have been like any other building, but it’s not. This is a place where fantasies come to life. This is a brothel. In fact, this is the largest brothel in Europe, open day and night, 24-7. Its name is Pascha (German for pasha). The concept: that visitors will leave feeling like a pascha.

Tidholm made several trips to the brothel during a three-year period to find out why sex is so important to men.

Paying the €5 entrance fee gives you access to all eleven floors. Over 700 men pass through the entrance of the brothel every day to enjoy the 150 women that work here. For only €30 you can get an orgasm on the first floor (the brothel even offers a money-back guarantee in case customers are unsatisfied). There are different themes on different floors. Dream about doing a nurse? Then you’ve come to the right place. Are you into Asian women? The fourth floor is theirs. You’ll find the transvestites on the seventh floor.

During daytime hours, Tidholm says, most of the people that make a visit to the brothel are businessmen, especially when big conferences and fairs take place in Cologne. Family men stop by late during the weekends, or on Monday mornings, after a tough week with the family.

We meet Sonia, a cute, dark-haired woman working at Pascha. It was very hard in the beginning, she admits, but eventually you “get used” to it. The job doesn’t make her feel bad about men (“men are men, you know”). Sonia believes that prostitution serves a purpose, that it prevents violence against women and children. In Romania, her country of origin, she was raped seven times.

“You don’t have to think it’s bad because if you think it’s bad you start crying, you get depressed,” she explains. It’s better for her to make a living by selling sexual favours than to be a murderer or thief. She wants to have a family in the future and by soliciting she can make some money. “I think this is the last thing that I wanted in this life.”

Sonia says that some men like to talk, and some even start to cry when telling her what it’s like at home. “What do you feel when they cry?” Tidholm asks. “Sometime I cry also. You feel compassion. You feel bad for them.”

We meet André, a fairly good-looking, German man. He recalls one time when he and his girlfriend spent a week at her parents’ home, during which they had to abstain from sex. Upon returning he was in the mood, she wasn’t. “I was so angry I said, ‘Okay, I’ll go to Pascha’.”

Of course, that’s not what he told is girlfriend: “I said I had to go to a meeting with my clients.”

He goes to the brothel once or twice a month. Most men change their behvaiour when they enter the brothel, André says. “They feel like a cowboy on the ranch. … They say, ‘Okay, I’m the boss, and these are all my girls’. That’s the reason why people are enjoying themselves.” He goes on explaining that there are two types of visitors. There are those who just want to fuck or get a blowjob and then leave. André himself belongs to the other category, those who want to party and have fun before getting to it.

When Svante Tidholm made his first visit to Pascha he found the place to be “abnormal, almost unreal.” But as time went by, he started to feel that he was the one who’s abnormal. Sad, yet understandable. Human beings can get used to almost anything. Everyone at the brothel defends prostitution. An employee thinks it’s simple: “When you feel your teeth hurt, you go to the dentist. And when you need sex, or just to talk to someone… you come here.” Needless to say, the men who visit the brothel don’t seem to give a second thought about what they’re doing to the women.

“A brothel is a symbol of how we try to solve a problem in society,” Tidholm says in the beginning of the documentary. “We have a lot of men with some sort of idea about sex that isn’t working particularly well. The brothel is an idea of how to solve this problem.” He adds that in the brothel—just like in the rest of society—it is women who are to take care of men.

Pascha is a place where these men can run away from their problems and their families, if only for a short while. The brothel symbolises a solution to a problem that isn’t a solution at all. In reality, it is a legal way for men to exploit women. But it also symbolises the failures of Western society where there’s equality on paper but not in real life. It symbolises the failures of the Left, which has fallen for the capitalist scam that exploitation and abuse is alright as long as the victim gets paid. And worst of all, legalising porn and prostitution tells men (and women) that it is fine to exploit others for your own personal needs.

Kristoffer Larsson studies Economics at a Swedish university. He holds a BA in Theology and is on the Board of Directors of Deir Yassin Remembered. He can be reached at: krislarsson@comhem.se. Read other articles by Kristoffer.

5 comments on this article so far ...

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  1. bozh said on June 23rd, 2010 at 8:47am #

    Let’s face it marriage is a clerical invention; it is much antihuman. It was invented and imposed on people as a punishment and not as a reward.

    In add’n, priestly class of people had more than one serf-servant woman. Some had no women servants, but boys or men to serve them.

    The priests realized that it is much easier to control the untermenchen if they wld be divided in families instead of clans as that way they are rendered more independent rather than interdependent
    And being much independent or striving to be so is ab wosrt thing one cld do: one turns into a basket case, which can be, then, easlily controled. tnx

  2. Rehmat said on June 23rd, 2010 at 8:02pm #

    Well, if “brothel provides the means to solve problems in scoiety” – then Israeli Jews must have world’s highest numbers of problems – as Tel aviv alone is home to 280 brothels and 20,000 prostitutes.

    Human Trafficking and Politics

  3. VPK9 said on June 23rd, 2010 at 8:56pm #

    Bozh, you really need to get your biology right. Marriage is not a clerical invention. It’s a part of nature. We treat it as something special in humans, but in reality a lot of other animals do it too. It’s called pair bonding. Human offspring require so much effort to raise that a woman has serious difficulty doing it alone. So, the man sticks around to cooperate and raise a child that can survive. Just because you’re a radical doesn’t mean that you need to spout conspiracy theories that don’t match history in order to justify your desire to engage in free love. It really doesn’t make sense.

  4. hysperia said on June 23rd, 2010 at 9:56pm #

    In fact, marriage is very much an ecclesiastic invention. It obviously didn’t exist for literally millions of years and was also, for a very long time, available only to the rich. Male and female human pair bondings (very different from “marriage”) for the purposes of raising children are and have always been tenuous and contingent. Many men (and male animals)do not stick around to raise their children. And, visiting a brothel is not a place to experience “free love”, it’s where you go to exploit women by paying for their sexual services. So as far as I’m concerned, you’re wrong on all counts VPK9.

  5. bozh said on June 24th, 2010 at 6:04am #

    Are u sure ur not identifying marriage with sex: both animal and human?
    Nowdays youngsters go thru 2,3, 4, 5 lovers before they find another lover to marry.

    Ab free love? What is the “free” doing there? Speaking for self, i assure u, that if i left my lover, i’d forever lose part of my humanity. In short, having sex with a girl for mos and yrs and leaving her wld never be free.
    For one thing, having sex with s’mone is not loving or respecting s’mone. Sex for men is often a matter of power over woman and for women a matter of being wanted, loved, cared for!

    I am not opposed to two youngsters having sex; then have babies and living together under one roof and raising their children.
    Youngsters shld be guided-tutored. The best tutors wld be uncles, aunts, grandparents, friends, cousings, et al.

    This does not happen too often in america. Youngsters are left alone. And in iniquitous society quickly become disillusioned, lost, fretful, fearful. tnx