Antislavery.org defines human trafficking as, “ the process of trapping people through the use of violence, deception or coercion and exploiting them for financial or personal gain.” It’s a phenomenon happening on a global scale. It’s also called modern slavery.
There are harrowing and heart wrenching tales of how human beings especially women and children are trafficked and exploited in ways unimaginable to ordinary people. Yet very few people know and understand the scale of this evil. We have compiled the list of the 10 best non-fiction books to understand human trafficking. These books will open your eyes and help you better understand human trafficking.
1.A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier by Ishmael Beah
Publication date: August 5, 2008
According to estimates, there are more than 300,000 child soldiers in conflicts around the globe. We all have questions about child soldiers. How do they become so cruel? We never know how one can turn an innocent child into a murderer.
This book answers all such questions because this is a first-hand account of a child soldier. In a breathtaking account, Beah tells the story of how violence and war stole his childhood and how he escaped the terror. Written in brutally honest prose, this book is a must-read for anyone interested in human trafficking and child soldiers.
2.Trafficked: The Terrifying True Story of a British Girl Forced into the Sex Trade by Sophie Hayes
Publication date: Sep 3, 2013
This book proves how broken families can make children vulnerable to trafficking. It’s a true story of a young British woman who had a long-term friend named Kas. He was very kind and helpful to her. Kas took her to Italy where he suddenly changed his attitude.
He tortured, beat and forced her. She was forced into prostitution so that Kas can pay his debts. It’s an emotional roller-coaster and an eye-opener for all young people to be aware of predators and traffickers. Parents can learn how important their relationship with their children is.
3.Girls Like Us: Fighting for a World Where Girls Are Not for Sale: A Memoir by Rachel Lloyd
Publication date: Feb 28, 2012
Girls Like Us tells the story of Lloyd’s groundbreaking nonprofit organization and explores the dark world of commercial sex trafficking through poignant narratives – a story that is revealing and inspiring at the same time.
In her book, Rachel explains her experience as a victim of trafficking while she hers facts and observations that reveal the nature of the crime. Most importantly she tries to educate readers on how to develop an understanding with such victims and how to welcome them back to life.
4.Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide by Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn
Publication date: June 1, 2010
Pulitzer prize-winning authors take us on a journey to explore different problems faced by women worldwide. All of them are true stories and depict our world with anger, sadness, clarity, and, ultimately, hope. There are women who are victims of domestic violence, human trafficking and sexual exploitation.
They also show how little help can transform women’s lives. Authors also argue that economic prosperity throughout the world can be achieved by unleashing the potential of women. To fight poverty, underdevelopment and malnutrition, it is necessary to empower women. It is an interesting read where both women bring the best of their analysis and experience.
Putting an End to Human Trafficking
5.The Last Girl: My Story of Captivity, and My Fight Against the Islamic State by Nadia Murad
Publication date: Oct 16, 2018
It’s an epic true story of a Nobel prize-winning Yazidi girl from northern Iraq. Nadia tells her harrowing tale of captivity and escape from the monsters of the Islamic state. Her village was attacked by the Islamic state on 15th August 2014. Nadia was 21 years old.
They killed all the men who refused to convert to Islam and took all the women as sex slaves. Nadia was one of them. Her entire family was killed and their bodies were swept into mass graves. She was enslaved and raped repeatedly by the militants until she managed a narrow escape in Mosul. Nadia’s story turned the world’s attention toward the genocide by ISIS. It is a story of resilience, hope and inspiration amid hatred and violence.
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6.Little Princes: One Man’s Promise to Bring Home the Lost Children of Nepal by Conor Grennan
Publication date: Dec 27, 2011
In this remarkable memoir, Conor Grennan shares the inspiring story of his battle to save the lost children of Nepal. During the civil war in Nepal, the child traffickers promised families of children living in remote villages to take their children to safety for huge fees. Traffickers would bring children to the capital of Khatmandu and will abandon them on the streets. Conor, who was a volunteer, decided to dedicate his life to bringing the lost children to their homes. He risked his life amid civil war and extreme weather conditions. It is a story of one man’s resolve to change the world for the better.
7.Children in the Global Sex Trade by Julia O’Connell Davidson
Publication date: March 11, 2005
This book explores the world of the sex trade and sex slavery. The author describes different ways in which children get involved in this trade. How global geopolitical and economic inequalities make humans vulnerable to such evils. Julia also explains and debunks popular narratives on childhood and sexuality and their relationship with different aspects of the exploitation of children. It’s a thought-provoking book that draws attention to an important issue most don’t know about.
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8.The Red Market: On the Trail of the World’s Organ Brokers, Bone Thieves, Blood Farmers, and Child Traffickers by Scott Carney
Publication date: May 31, 2011
In this non-fiction thriller, award-winning journalist breathtaking world of trade in human body organs, bones and even alive human beings. Scott is a famous investigative journalist who has worked in the most dangerous and unlikely places in the world. Through his experience and brilliant reporting, he uncovers the underworld where human beings are treated as automobiles whose different parts can be traded in a merciless way. He exposes a billion dollars industry thriving on child trafficking and sexual exploitation in a way shocking to imagine.
9.A Stolen Life: A Memoir by Jaycee Dugard
Publication date: July 12, 2011
In this New York Times bestseller, Jaycee tells her own story of abduction and enslavement. It’s a raw and powerful memoir which explores the life story of Jaycee and how endured mental, physical and sexual abuse for 18 years after being kidnapped in 1991. It’s a horrific story yet beautifully written. Her tale of survival and reintegration into society after 18 years of abuse is at once inspiring and breathtaking.
10.Slave: My True Story by Mende Nazer, Damien Lewis
Publication date: January 7, 2004
Mende tells her horrific story of abduction, enslavement, exploitation and escape in this book. It begins in 1993 when Arab raiders attacked her village and abducted all girls including Mende. She was sold into slavery to a wealthy Arab family in Sudan’s capital of Khartoum. She was severely tortured and mistreated by the family. Her life took a new turn when she managed to escape from slavery in September 2000 in London United Kingdom. This book depicts how ancient African culture is being destroyed by foreign raiders. It is also a testament to the courage of women subjected to abuse and slavery.
I hope you liked this list. Let us know which book are you going to read. 🙂