Forced and Precarious Labor in the Global Economy: Slavery by Another Name?
This course should appeal to anyone interested in both better understanding and effectively challenging global patterns of exploitation, vulnerability, and abuse.
Drawing upon examples from across the world, the course specifically focuses on labor in three major categories of work: supply chain work, migrant work, and sex work. Students will also consider the limitations of popular approaches focusing upon the politics of rescue, the criminalisation of movement, and corporate social responsibility, and explore alternatives based upon models of worker rights, legal protection, collective organising, and decent work.
The course demonstrates that forced and precarious labour cannot be reduced to the grit in the gears of an otherwise legitimate and smoothly functioning economic system. They must instead be viewed as an intended outcome of the smooth and regular operations of the global economy. Taking effective action to address patterns of exploitation therefore requires identifying and challenging systems of exploitation, rather than targeting individual ‘bad apple’ employers or deviant criminals.
Key issues to be explored:
• Genevieve LeBaron, University of Sheffield.
• Joel Quirk, University of the Witwatersrand
• Neil Howard, University of Antwerp.
• Prabha Kotiswaran, King’s College London
• Samuel Okyere, University of Nottingham.
This introductory course will begin on the 9th of March 2018 and run for nine weeks. No prior knowledge or expertise is required. Registration is free, with a paid certificate option. No more than 3- 4 hours per week is required.