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Although slavery is illegal throughout the world, we learned from Kevin Bales's highly praised exposé, Disposable People: New Slavery in the Global Economy, that more than twenty-seven million people--in countries from Pakistan to Thailand to the United States--are still trapped in bondage. With this new volume, Bales, the leading authority on modern slavery, looks beyond the specific instances of slavery described in his last book to explore broader themes about slavery's causes, its continuation, and how it might be ended. Written to raise awareness and deepen understanding, and touching again on individual lives around the world, this book tackles head-on one of the most urgent and difficult problems facing us today.
Each of the chapters in Understanding Global Slavery explores a different facet of global slavery. Bales investigates slavery's historical roots to illuminate today's puzzles. He explores our basic ideas about what slavery is and how the phenomenon fits into our moral, political, and economic worlds. He seeks to explain how human trafficking brings people into our cities and how the demand for trafficked workers, servants, and prostitutes shapes modern slavery. And he asks how we can study and measure this mostly hidden crime. Throughout, Bales emphasizes that to end global slavery, we must first understand it. This book is a step in that direction.
Kevin Bales is Co-Founder of Free the Slaves, Washington DC, and Professor of Contemporary Slavery at the WIlberforce Institute for the Study of Slavery and Emancipation at the University of Hull. He is the world's leading expert on contemporary slavery.