Wrists bound in silver chains

Sex Trafficking in Southeast Asia: the context of desire, duty, and debt

Wednesday 23rd November 2016, 6.30 - 8.00pm; Room 1.04, New Academic Building
Speaker: Dr Trude Jacobsen; Chair: Dr Jürgen Haacke

The issue of trafficking in relation to Myanmar and Cambodia receives a great deal of attention from regional and international non-governmental organisations in terms of advocacy for victims and awareness campaigns to prevent further abuses in mainland Southeast Asia. (Myanmar is designated a Tier2+ country for trafficking in persons for the purpose of sexual exploitation; Cambodia is classified Tier2.) Yet the numbers of men, women and children moving between ‘origin’, ‘destination’, and ‘staging’ countries increases each year, despite the best efforts of campaigners and project managers.

This talk will examine long-standing cultural perspectives toward marriage, familial obligation, debt bondage, and the implications that ethnicity and gender have for persons entering into these contracts. Dr Jacobsen will explain how the agendas and programming of the development milieu do not take these cultural particularities into consideration – and why they must.

This public lecture marks the publication of Dr Trude Jacobsen's book of the same name, Sex Trafficking in Southeast Asia: A History of Desire, Duty, and Debt.

Download and listen to the podcast here



Trude Jacobsen is Associate Professor of Southeast Asian history at Northern Illinois University. She is a Visiting Senior Fellow at the LSE Saw Swee Hock Southeast Asia Centre for the Michaelmas Term of 2016/17.



Jürgen Haacke is Director of the Saw Swee Hock Southeast Asia Centre and Associate Professor of International Relations at LSE.