Human Trafficking

Image from
Image from

This guide is designed to help you research information about human trafficking . It includes an index of scholarly sources that should be used. Included in the list are websites and search engines that will be helpful in your research. If you have any trouble finding these sources, please ask a librarian for help. Good Luck! Any comments or suggestions are welcome!
  • RCC Library Home Page: Most materials found in this research guide are available at the library's home page.
  • Reference Desk : Please contact me if you have any questions concerning this guide or research.



The on-line catalog provides access to the Library's collection of approximately 40,000 books, periodicals and audio-visual titles. These resources may be used to find information for assignments or general interest.

Tutorial for searching catalog and ordering books from Metro Boston Library Network (includes Boston Public Library)

Good Search Terms to use: words or phrase

  • human trafficking
  • human trafficking and [geographic area, i.e. Thailand]
  • prostitution and trafficking
  • international human trafficking
  • forced labor
  • forced child labor
  • human smuggling

New Books

Byfronski, Dedria.Human Trafficking. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2013. Print.
Call Number: HQ281 .H832 2013

Circulating Books

Shelley, Louise. Human Trafficking: A global perspective. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2010. Print.
Call Number: HQ281 .S63 2010

Cullen-DuPont, Kathryn. Human trafficking. New York: Facts On File, 2009. Print.
Call Number: HQ281.C85 2009

Zhang, Sheldon X. Smuggling and Trafficking in Human Beings: All roads lead to America. Westport: Praeger Publishers, 2007. Print.
Call Number: HQ281.Z53 2007

Ehrenreich, Barbara and Arlie Russell Hochschild, eds. Global Woman: Nannies, maids, and sex workers in the new economy. New York: Metropolitan/Owl Books, 2004. Print.
Call Number: HD6072 .G55 2004x

Electronic Books


The library has recently added 20,000 online books from the vendor Ebrary. This is the “community college” collection, of interest to students and faculty at 2-year colleges. All books are simultaneously available to all RCC users.
external image 10084604.jpgUnderstanding Global Slavery : A Readerby Kevin Bales. Berkeley : University of California Press, 2005

external image cover.action?docID=10076942Political Economy of New Slavery by Christien van den Anker. New York : Palgrave Macmillan, 2004.

external image 10141049.gifIllicit flows and criminal things: states, borders, and the other side of globalization edited by Willem van Schendel and Itty Abraham. Bloomington : Indiana University Press, 2005.
external image 10056038.jpgSex and Borders: Gender, national identity, and prostitution policy in Thailand by Leslie Ann Jeffrey. Vancouver : UBC Press, 2002


Browse these paper journals and magazines in the library's periodicals section for articles about human trafficking
  • Atlantic Monthly
  • The Economist
  • Newsweek
  • Time


Access to millions of journal, magazine, newspaper and reference source articles through our research databases.

Academic Search Premier

Provides full text for more than 3,800 scholarly publications covering academic areas of study including over 4,600 articles mentioning human trafficking, 750 articles mentioning international human trafficking, 500 mentioning human smuggling and 1,000 using trafficking and children.

Global Issues in Context

Global Issues in Context offers international viewpoints on a broad spectrum of global issues, topics, and current events. Featured are hundreds of continuously updated issue and country portals that bring together a variety of specially selected, highly relevant sources for analysis of social, political, military, economic, environmental, health, and cultural issues. A search for human trafficking brings up a comprehensive overview on the subject, including over 2,600 news articles, 75 academic journals, 20 reference sources, and 15 primary sources.

BPL Newspaper Databases

Newspaper databases from the Boston Public Library. You can use your RCC library barcode for access. A search for human trafficking returns over 6,700 results, from multiple databases.

Academic One File

Academic OneFile is the premier source for peer-reviewed, full-text articles from the world's leading journals and reference sources. With extensive coverage of the physical sciences, technology, medicine, social sciences, the arts, theology, literature and other subjects, Academic OneFile is both authoritative and comprehensive. With millions of articles available in both PDF and HTML full-text with no restrictions, researchers are able to find accurate information quickly. Over 350 academic journals, 400 magazine articles, 2,100 news articles and 25 multimedia resources are returned on a search for human trafficking.

Streaming Videos

Full length and segment videos from Films On Demand.

Films On Demand

external image 41698_thumb.jpgSold: Fighting the New Global Slave Trade
Evoking the spirit of 19th-century abolitionism, this program enters the lives of three anti-slavery activists in today’s developing world. Symphorienne Kessouagni works to protect vulnerable children in rural Togo, keeping them away from traffickers and helping young slaves escape. Sunitha Krishnan is a former Hindu nun in Hyderabad, India, who runs 17 schools for former brothel workers and lobbies officials to enforce anti-slavery laws. Ansar Burney is a Karachi attorney who retrieves Pakistani boys forced to perform as jockeys in the brutal sport of camel racing. Each activist speaks in eloquent detail about his or her experiences and the psychological scars—as well as the resilience—of those freed from slavery. (Portions in other languages with English subtitles, 54 minutes)

external image 36338_thumb.jpgDying to Leave: A Two-Hour Special on Human Trafficking
This two-hour Wide Angle special goes deep inside the global problem of human trafficking. Every year, at least two million people are packed in shipping containers, pulled through sewage tunnels, secreted in car chassis, and ferried across frigid waters. Among this human cargo, an alarming number end up as prostitutes, thieves, or sweatshop laborers. This documentary explores the worldwide boom in illicit migration and human trafficking, recording the stories of those who pull up their roots and risk all, and puts a human face on an issue too often reduced to statistics. It examines the circumstances that drive these migrants from their homes, highlights the difficulties involved in their epic journeys, and reveals what awaits them in their new world. In addition, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton discusses human trafficking and smuggling with anchor Jamie Rubin. (2 hours)

external image 42021_thumb.jpgCambodia: The Virginity Trade
Some Asian traditions hold that sex with a virgin will bring a man good luck and health. Tragically, the custom is far from moribund—in the dark world of Southeast Asian prostitution there is a growing demand for younger and younger companions. This program reveals the disturbing inner workings of Cambodia’s child-sex industry as well as its manifold human consequences. Viewers meet teenage girls who entered the trade as high-priced virgins—some under coercion, others to support their families, all ending up trapped in slavery. Additional interviews feature activists from human rights NGOs such as APLE, an agency with ties to France, and LICADHO, a group based in Cambodia. (60 minutes)
external image 41371_thumb.jpgModern Slavery: Human Trafficking
In search of a better life, Natasha and Galia Gutu thought they had found fulfilling jobs in Turkey through their seemingly helpful neighbors. But when the Gutu sisters left their home in Moldova they were actually traveling into a nightmare—not the health aide employment that their “friends” had promised, but rather enslavement as prostitutes. This program follows their story by recording their own painful accounts, a different side of the narrative as told by the mother-daughter pair who led them into deception, and the real-life courtroom drama that unfolds when the sisters bring charges against their former neighbors. Will a guilty verdict start Natasha and Galia on the road to healing? (45 minutes)

Government Documents

Human trafficking: recent trends : hearing before the Subcommittee on Border, Maritime, and Global Counterterrorism of the Committee on Homeland Security, House of Representatives, One Hundred Eleventh Congress, first session, March 19, 2009. Washington : U.S. G.P.O., 2010.

Domestic minor sex trafficking: hearing before the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security of the Committee on the Judiciary, House of Representatives, One Hundred Eleventh Congress, second session, September 15, 2010. Washington : U.S. G.P.O., 2011.

Web sites

There are many good web sites addressing the issue of Human Trafficking. These web sites have been evaluated by library staff. Remember to always evaluate internet resources. To find out more about evaluating web sites, Cornell University has a very good guide.

  • Amnesty International- (From their Mission Statement)We are people from across the world standing up for humanity and human rights. Our purpose is to protect people wherever justice, freedom, truth and dignity are denied. We investigate and expose abuses, educate and mobilize the public, and help transform societies to create a safer, more just world. We received the Nobel Peace Prize for our life-saving work.
  • The Not For Sale Campaign- equips and mobilizes Smart Activists to deploy innovative solutions to re-abolish slavery in their own backyards and across the globe. Together, we can end slavery in our lifetime.
  • The Department of State’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, directed by Ambassador Luis CdeBaca, leads the United States' global engagement against human trafficking, an umbrella term used to describe the activities involved when someone obtains or holds a person in compelled service.
  • The Federal Bureau of Investigation has a site devoted to the topic of human trafficking, which includes up-to-the-minute news, resources for victims, and links to statutes and initiatives.

Citing Sources: Style Guides

APA Style Tutorial
Laguardia Community College Library MLA and APA citation style
The Owl at Purdue: APA Formatting and Style Guide
The Owl at Purdue: MLA 2009 Formatting and Style Guide

Basic Research Help

Please click the Ask a Librarian icon if you have any questions concerning these guides, need help finding material for your research or any general questions you might have.

General Library Information

Research guide updated on 3/29/14 by Joy Singletary.