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Pouring New Wine into Old Bottles: Understanding the Dilemmas of Contemporary Trafficking Work by Alice Miller

This short essay explores the dilemmas faced by anti-trafficking activists working to bring human rights to bear. Although the essence of ‘trafficking’ is most often framed as about gender, sexual harm, and prosecution of ‘traffickers’, effective rights interventions in ‘trafficking’ must be situated in a deeper understanding of the modern reality of globalization. While I am not arguing that understanding gender or sexual harm are irrelevant in anti-trafficking work, hyper-attention to stories of sex slaves weakens our interventions. It is critical to understand the histories of the frameworks (like ‘trafficking’) in which we work. Failing that, we become inadvertent pawns, allowing governments to take up the rhetoric of rights without a real shift in power. Anti-trafficking work is on the edge of this form of complicity.

Pouring New Wine Into Old Bottles 

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  2. From the International to the Local in Feminist Legal Responses to Rape, Prostitution/Sex Work and Sex Trafficking: Four Studies in Contemporary Governance Feminism by Hila Shamir
  3. From the International to the Local in Feminist Legal Responses to Rape, Prostitution/Sex Work, and Sex Trafficking: Four Studies in Contemporary Governance Feminism
  4. The Right to an Effective Remedy for Victims of Trafficking in Persons: A Survey of International Law and Policy by Anne Gallagher
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