Human Trafficking


1) What historical forces led to the rise of the movement?

History of Human Trafficking


  • "The exploitation of women is often rooted in imperialism and colonialism. Political, economic, and sexual exploitation of the weak and powerless, who are often people of the previously colonized and developing nations, continue today on a worldwide scale. During imperial and colonial expansion, whether in North America, the Caribbean, Europe, Africa, or Australia, colonizers extracted huge profits by exploiting and commodifying women. Women’s sexuality and labor became a means to appropriate economic, political, and social gain for colonizers. By purchasing, hiring, and selling women, the colonizers made these women transferable commodities to be used and reused, sold and resold."
    • Human Trafficking started in colonial times. The colonizers took advantage of the natives and sold them for profit. The natives became objects that the colonizers sold bought and used in the prostitution business.
  • "Kamala Kempadoo (2004) reports that during the colonial invasion of the Caribbean, “slave women were frequently hired out by white and free colored families as nannies, nurses, cooks, washerwomen, hucksters, seamstresses, yet the general expectation of individuals who hired female labor under whatever pretense was that sexual benefits were included” (p. 53). Kempadoo further reports that “concubines served as both mistresses and housekeepers and were sometimes hired out by their owners to sexually service other men in order to obtain cash” (p. 53)."
    • During the colonization of the Caribbean women were used as houskeepers, maids and other things. However they were expected to be their masters sexual slave aswell
  • “The use of the word prostitution to describe mass sexual exploitation of enslaved black women by white men not only deflected attention away from the prevalence of forced sexual assault, it lent further credibility to the myth that black females were inherently wanton and therefore responsible for rape” (p. 34).
  • "By coerced mating and oppressive massive breeding, slave women’s bodies became machines to produce and reproduce slave labor. State agencies fostered racial and gendered violence through various discriminatory laws. Dorothy Roberts (1997) reports that “the law reinforced the sexual exploitation of slave women in two ways; it deemed any child who resulted from the rape to be a slave and it failed to recognize the rape of a slave woman as a crime” (p. 29).
    • Discriminatory laws prevented the human trafficking through slaves to be recognized as a crime
  • “Colonial white men expressed their fear and hatred of womanhood by institutionalizing sexist oppression” (p. 31).
  • "Slave women were thus oppressed and exploited by a double-edged sword—their race and their gender."