Modern Slavery

January 11 was Human Trafficking Awareness Day, one of the many ways that the cause of fighting human trafficking will be promoted throughout the year. Is that a good thing? We asked 10 people who work with human trafficking awareness a simple question: ‘Campaigns to raise public awareness of human trafficking may have flaws, but their overall impact is positive. YES OR NO?’ This is what they answered.


From our 2004 international conference “From Chattel Bondage to State Servitude: Slavery in the 20th Century” to our 2012 conference on “Abolition, Past and Present: Scholars, Activists, and the Challenge of Contemporary Slavery,” the Gilder Lehrman Center has sought to forge a field of study about the origins and nature of current human trafficking and bonded labor systems in the world. With the support of the Robina Foundation, the Center has expanded its work on this subject through the creation of a new Robina Fellow on Modern Slavery and the development of a new working group on modern slavery and human trafficking.