This paper explores women's agency through the annalysis of qualitative works on women who have engaged in sex work or offending. I draw from feminist pathways theory, symbolic interactionism, and post-structalism to interrograte the question of women's agency in a patriarchal culture. Supplementing thes theoretical perspectives are qualitative life history works, which let women explain from their perspective the circumstances leading up to their criminal offending or engagement in sex work. I analyze how cumulative victimization and multiple marginality influence choice, and subsequently how these factors lead women to negotiate choice and agency through sex work and offending. Women who engage in sex work and offending still have agency, no matter how limited. Yet explanations of offending behavior and sex work tend to rely solely on vicitimization narratives. exposing this agency reveals both the power of structural oppression in shaping choices, but also the unique and subversive ways women assert power within these constraints.