Books and Films About Human Trafficking

Books About Human Trafficking

A Crime So Monstrous: Face to Face with Modern Day Slavery, 2009, E. Benjamin Skinner
There are more slaves in the world today than at any time in history. After spending four years visiting a dozen countries where slavery flourishes, Skinner tells the story of individuals who live in slavery, those who have escaped from bondage, those who own or traffic in slaves, and the mixed political motives of those who seek to combat the crime.

Faraway: A Suburban Boy’s Story as a Victim of Sex Trafficking, 2015, R.K. Kline and Daniel D. Maurer

When Kevin was fourteen years old he was just starting to understand his orientation as a gay teen living in a suburb of St. Louis. Then he met someone who he thought was his friend. This man was no friend, instead he coerced Kevin into child prostitution.

Girls Like Us: Fighting for a World Where Girls Are Not for Sale: A Memoir, 2012, Rachel Lloyd

Girls Like Us is the story of Rachel Lloyd’s escape from the commercial sex industry and her founding of GEMS, New York City’s Girls Education and Mentoring Service to help other girls escape exploitation. Ms. Lloyd’s memoir is a story of human abuse, enduring hope, and the promise of redemption.

Half the Sky: Tuning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide, 2010, N. Kristof and S. WuDunn
Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn illustrate the pervasive oppression of women and girls in the developing world. Among the extraordinary women they write about is a Cambodian teenager sold into sex slavery who builds
a thriving business that supports her family. Drawing on their combined reporting experience, the Kristof and WuDunn depict our world with anger, sadness, clarity, and, ultimately, hope.

Runaway Girl: Escaping Life on the Streets One Helping Hand at a Time, 2012, Carissa Phelps and Larkin Warren

By the time she was twelve, Carissa Phelps had run away from home, dropped out of school, and fled blindly into the arms of a brutal pimp. Even when she escaped him, she could not outrun the crushing inner pain of abuse, neglect, and abandonment. Through the unexpected kindness of a teacher and a counselor, Carissa accomplished the unimaginable, graduating from UCLA with both a law degree and an MBA, and found herself back on the streets helping homeless and at-risk youth discover their own paths to a better life.

Sex Trafficking: Inside the Business of Modern Slavery, 2017, Siddharth Kara

Originally published in 2007, Siddharth Kara adds documentation to his ground-breaking work on the local factors and economic forces that support sexual slavery worldwide. After 15 years Kara has recorded nearly 900 cases of sex trafficking in forty-one countries and has helped advise on numerous legal, tactical and policy efforts for abolishing modern day slavery.

The Slave Across the Street, 2010, Theresa Flores

Theresa Flores shares her life as an All-American, blue-eyed, blond-haired
15-year-old teenager enslaved into the world of sex trafficking while living in an upper-middle class suburb of Detroit and without her parents ever knowing about it. At the mercy of a large underground criminal ring, Ms. Flores endured more as a child than most will face in their entire lives.

Walking Prey: How America’s Youth Are Vulnerable to Sex Slavery, 2014, Holly Austin Smith

Holly Austin Smith argues that two cultural forces have made America’s youth vulnerable to exploitation by sex traffickers: engagement in adult sexual attitudes and practices at younger ages and the pressure to conform. Speaking from experience Ms. Smith explains that without consistent positive guidance and engagement, many young people grow up with little self-worth making them particularly vulnerable to exploitation.


Films About Human Trafficking

Born into Brothels, 2004 (1 hr 25 min)

This documentary follows the work of photographer Zana Briski through the red-light district of Calcutta and the relationships she developed with the children of the prostitutes she photographed.  As the video camera follows Briski through the squalid red-light district we are made aware of abusive mothers and drugged fathers deny their children passage into a better life, and also the wisdom of elders who desire something more for these children.

Carissa, 2008 (23min)

Carissa Phelps graduated with both a law degree and an MBA from UCLA
in 2007 but when she was 12, she was homeless and sexually exploited in Fresno. This documentary short takes us on Carissa’s inspirational journey
as she revisits her past and helps other at-risk and homeless youth.

Chosen, 2012 (22 min)

True story of two teen girls tricked by traffickers. Brianna, 18, was a star student, cheerleader and waitress eager to break out of her small town to attend college in the big city. Lacy, 13, enjoyed church and school but struggled to help care for her siblings while her stepfather was deployed and mother worked to support the family. Brianna and Lacy share how traffickers used manipulation to lure them into the world of sex trafficking.

Chosen – Gang, 2014 (13 min)

Lured by promises of love and protection Maria was recruited by a gang at 12 years old. For five years, she was forced to sacrifice her body to Mexican drug runs, prostitution, and violence. Trapped in a world she never expected, she was forced to make the ultimate decision: surrender her life to the gang or risk escape?

DEMAND, 2016 (43min)

This documentary, produced by Shared Hope International, focuses on demand factors for sex trafficking, one of the most significant being pornography. It also addresses how all forms of commercial sexual exploitation such as pornography, stripping, and prostitution are connected
to all other forms such as sex trafficking and sex slavery.

Half the Sky, 2012 (3 hrs 44min)

HALF THE SKY is a passionate call-to-arms, urging us not only to bear witness to the plight of the world’s women, but to help to transform their oppression into opportunity. Our future is in the hands of women everywhere.

I Am Jane Doe, 2017 (1 hr 39 min)

I Am Jane Doe depicts the efforts of several mothers to hold accountable for the trafficking of their middle-school daughters.  It documents the challenges and legal obstacles faced by these women as
they contend with Backpage, judges, special interest groups, and an internet freedom law that protects website publishers who advertise underage girls for sex.

Make Room For Youth, 2012 (13 min)

This video was created for the non-profit organization “Make Room For Youth” in hopes to bring about more awareness for Youth Homelessness in Dane County, WI.

Making of a Girl, 2013 (5 min)

A journey of a hypothetical preteen girl as she faces a life of sexual exploitation. Narrated by Rachel Lloyd, founder of Girls Educational and Mentoring Services (GEMS), who uncovers the trauma and pain of sex trafficking, abuse, and sexual exploitation.

Nefarious: Merchant of Souls, 2011 (1 hr 36 min)

This documentary provides an in-depth look at the human trafficking industry showing where slaves are sold, where they work, and where they are confined. With footage shot in over 19 different countries, Nefarious exposes the nightmare of sex slavery as experienced by hundreds of thousands daily through the eyes of both the enslaved and their traffickers.

Not My Life, 2011 (1 hr 24 min)

Not My Life comprehensively depicts the cruel and dehumanizing practices
of human trafficking and modern slavery on a global scale. Filmed on five continents, in a dozen countries, Not My Life takes viewers into a world where millions of children are exploited through an astonishing array of practices including forced labor, sex tourism, sexual exploitation, and child soldiering.

Sex + Money, 2011 (1 hr 32 min)

A documentary that follows a group of students as they travel across the USA, seeking to understand how the sexual exploitation of children has become the nation’s fasting growing form of organized crime.

The Storm Makers, 2014 (1 hr 6 min)

A chilling exposé of Cambodia’s human trafficking underworld and an eye-opening look at the complex cycle of poverty, despair and greed that fuels this brutal modern slave trade. More than half a million Cambodians work abroad and a staggering third of these have been sold as slaves. Most are young women, held prisoner and forced to work in horrific conditions, sometimes as prostitutes, in Malaysia, Thailand, and Taiwan.

Trafficked, 2017 (1 hr 44 min)

In this story inspired by real characters, three girls from America, Nigeria, and India are trafficked through an elaborate global network and enslaved in a Texas brothel, and must together attempt a daring escape to reclaim their freedom.