Library Highlights: Trafficking & Human Rights


Gridlock: Labor, Migration, and Human Trafficking in Dubai
Pardis Mahdavi
HD8666.Z8 D836 2010

From the Publisher: The images of human trafficking are all too often reduced to media tales of helpless young women taken by heavily accented, dark-skinned captors—but the reality is a far cry from this ste-reotype. In the Middle East, Dubai has been accused of being a hotbed of trafficking. Pardis Mahdavi, however, draws a more complicated and more personal picture of this city filled with migrants. Not all migrant workers are trapped, tricked, and abused. Like anyone else, they make choices to better their lives, though the risk of ending up in bad situations is high. Legislators hoping to combat human traffick-ing focus heavily on women and sex work, but there is real potential for abuse of both male and female migrants in a variety of areas of employment—whether on the street, in a field, at a restaurant, or at someone’s house. Gridlock explores how migrants’ actual experiences in Dubai contrast with the typical discussions—and global moral panic—about human trafficking.

Mahdavi powerfully contrasts migrants’ own stories with interviews with U.S. policy makers, revealing the gaping disconnect between policies on human trafficking and the realities of forced labor and migra-tion in the Persian Gulf. To work toward solving this global problem, we need to be honest about what trafficking is—and is not—and to finally get past the stereotypes about trafficked persons so we can real-ly understand the challenges migrant workers are living through every day.

The Politics of Trafficking: The First International Movement to Combat the Sexual Exploitation of Women
Stephanie A. Limoncelli
HQ281 .L55 2010

From the Publisher: Sex trafficking is not a recent phenomenon. Over 100 years ago, the first international traffic in women for prostitution emerged, prompting a worldwide effort to combat it. The Politics of Trafficking provides a unique look at the history of that first anti-trafficking movement, illuminating the role gender, sexuality, and national interests play in international politics. Initially conceived as a global humanitarian effort to protect women from sexual exploitation, the movement’s feminist-inspired vision failed to achieve its universal goal and gradually gave way to nationalist concerns over “undesirable” mi-grants and state control over women themselves. Addressing an issue that is still of great concern today, this book sheds light on the ability of international non-governmental organizations to challenge state power, the motivations for state involvement in humanitarian issues pertaining to women, and the im-portance of gender and sexuality to state officials engaged in nation building.

Trafficking and Human Rights: European and Asia-Pacific Perspectives
edited by Leslie Holmes
HQ281 .T73 2010

From the Publisher: Human trafficking is widely considered to be the fastest growing branch of traffick-ing. It has moved rapidly up the agenda of states and international organisations since the early-1990s, not only because of this growth, but also as its implications for security and human rights have become clear-er. This fascinating study by European and Australian specialists provides original research findings on human trafficking, with particular reference to Europe, South-East Asia and Australia. A major focus is on how many states and organisations act in ways that undermine trafficking victims’ rights.

Illicit Flirtations: Labor, Migration, and Sex Trafficking in Tokyo
Rhacel Salazar Parreñas
HD8728.5.F55 P37 2011
From the Publisher: In 2004, the U.S. State Department declared Filipina hostesses in Japan the largest group of sex trafficked persons in the world. Since receiving this global attention, the number of hostesses entering Japan has dropped by nearly 90 percent—from more than 80,000 in 2004 to just over 8,000 to-day. To some, this might suggest a victory for the global anti-trafficking campaign, but Rhacel Parreñas counters that this drastic decline—which stripped thousands of migrants of their livelihoods—is in truth a setback. Parreñas worked alongside hostesses in a working-class club in Tokyo’s red-light district, serv-ing drinks, singing karaoke, and entertaining her customers, including members of the yakuza, the Japa-nese crime syndicate. While the common assumption has been that these hostess bars are hotbeds of sex-ual trafficking, Parreñas quickly discovered a different world of working migrant women, there by choice, and, most importantly, where none were coerced into prostitution. But this is not to say that the hostesses were not vulnerable in other ways.

Illicit Flirtations challenges our understandings of human trafficking and calls into question the U.S. poli-cy to broadly label these women as sex trafficked. It highlights how in imposing top-down legal con-straints to solve the perceived problems—including laws that push dependence on migrant brokers, guest worker policies that bind migrants to an employer, marriage laws that limit the integration of migrants, and measures that criminalize undocumented migrants—many women become more vulnerable to exploi-tation, not less. It is not the jobs themselves, but the regulation that makes migrants susceptible to traf-ficking. If we are to end the exploitation of people, we first need to understand the actual experiences of migrants, not rest on global policy statements. This book gives a long overdue look into the real world of those labeled as trafficked.

Human Trafficking: A Global Perspective
Louise Shelley
HQ281 .S63 2010

From the Publisher: This book examines all forms of human trafficking globally, revealing the operations of the trafficking business and the nature of the traffickers themselves. Using a historical and comparative perspective, it demonstrates that there is more than one business model of human trafficking and that there are enormous variations in human trafficking in different regions of the world. Drawing on a wide body of academic research – actual prosecuted cases, diverse reports, and field work and interviews con-ducted by the author over the last sixteen years in Asia, Latin America, Africa, Europe, and the former so-cialist countries – Shelley concludes that human trafficking will grow in the twenty-first century as a re-sult of economic and demographic inequalities in the world, the rise of conflicts, and possibly global cli-mate change. Coordinated efforts of government, civil society, the business community, multilateral organ-izations, and the media are needed to stem its growth.

The International Law of Human Trafficking
Anne T. Gallagher
K5258 .G35 2010

From the Publisher: Although human trafficking has a long and ignoble history, it is only recently that trafficking has become a major political issue for states and the international community and the subject of detailed international rules. This book presents the first-ever comprehensive and in-depth analysis of the international law of human trafficking. Anne T. Gallagher calls on her direct experience working with-in the United Nations to chart the development of new international laws on this issue. She links these rules to the international law of state responsibility as well as key norms of international human rights law, transnational criminal law, refugee law, and international criminal law, in the process identifying and explaining the major legal obligations of states with respect to preventing trafficking, protecting and sup-porting victims, and prosecuting perpetrators. This is a timely and groundbreaking work: a unique and valuable resource for policymakers, advocates, practitioners, and scholars working in this new, controver-sial, and important field.

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