Heather Smith-Cannoy et al., "Sex Trafficking and Human Rights: The Status of Women and State Responses" (Georgetown UP, 2022)


Human trafficking for the sex trade is a form of modern-day slavery that ensnares thousands of victims each year, disproportionately affecting women and girls. While the international community has developed an impressive edifice of human rights law, these laws are not equally recognized or enforced by all countries. Sex Trafficking and Human Rights: The Status of Women and State Responses (Georgetown UP, 2022) demonstrates that state responsiveness to human trafficking is shaped by the political, social, cultural, and economic rights afforded to women in that state. While combatting human trafficking is a multiscalar problem with a host of conflating variables, this book shows that a common theme in the effectiveness of state response is the degree to which women and girls are perceived as, and actually are, full citizens. By analyzing human trafficking cases in India, Thailand, Russia, Nigeria, and Brazil, they shed light on the factors that make some women and girls more susceptible to traffickers than others.

Heather Smith-Cannoy (PhD, UC San Diego, 2007) is a Professor of Political Science/Social Justice and Human Rights at the New College of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences at Arizona State University. She is currently serving as the Interim Director of the School of Social and Behavioral Sciences. Her work explores when and under what conditions international law impacts the human rights of the most marginalized populations, focusing on both the opportunities and the challenges associated with this body of law. She has also focused on the role that international law can play in advancing the legal rights of sex trafficking victims. She has published 4 books and more than 15 articles and book chapters.

Patricia C. Rodda is the Assistant Professor of Political Science at Carroll University in Waukesha, Wisconsin. She teaches international relations, comparative politics, international law, conflict and security and political theory. Her research often focuses on vulnerable populations and the challenges they face seeking human rights protections. She is currently working on a new book project that investigates the institutions and interests that facilitate or obstruct the adoption of women’s rights in Muslim-majority states.

Charles “Tony” Smith is a Professor in Political Science and Law at the University of California-Irvine (PhD UCSD 2004; JD UF 1987). His research concerns how institutions and the strategic interactions of political actors relate to the contestation over rights, law, and democracy. He has authored or co-authored eight books including Sex Trafficking and Human Rights: The Status of Women and State Responses (Georgetown University Press 2022) and The Politics of Perverts: The Political Attitudes and Actions of Non-Traditional Sexual Minorities (NYU Press 2024) and published over 40 articles and chapters. He is currently the Editor in Chief of Political Research Quarterly.

Lamis Abdelaaty is an associate professor of political science at the Maxwell School of Syracuse University. She is the author of Discrimination and Delegation: Explaining State Responses to Refugees (Oxford University Press, 2021). Email her comments at labdelaa@syr.edu

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Lamis Abdelaaty

Dr. Lamis Abdelaaty is Associate Professor of Political Science at the Maxwell School of Syracuse University, and Senior Research Associate at the Campbell Public Affairs Institute. Her book, Discrimination and Delegation: Explaining State Responses to Refugees, was published by Oxford University Press in 2021. Email her at labdelaa@syr.edu
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