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Slavery In The Modern World Essay

1436 words - 6 pages

Today the world has transitioned from a public display of slavery to a modern form of slavery where millions of people are hidden and trapped from the outside world. This modern form of slavery differs from the old form of slavery in the aspect of ownership. Today “no one tries to assert legal ownership of the bonded laborer. The slave is held under threat of violence, and often physically locked up” (Bales 17). Modern slavery, a combination of minor forms of slavery, consistently exercises physical violence and physiological power over the slave to gain a dependency from them. For example, “In a perpetual state of dependence, bonded laborers have no choice but to return to the landlord or moneylender again and again” (Bales 239). The people that this form of slavery is more vulnerable to are women and children because entrapment of them is more effective. According to the Global Slavery Index, today there are 29.8 million people enslaved worldwide. The abundance of slaves today has caused the value and price of slaves too decrease tremendously compared to the old form of slavery. “For the first time in human history there is an absolute glut of potential slaves…with so many possible slaves, their value has plummeted” (Bales 14). With this increase in numbers and decrease in the price of slaves, there are various markets of slavery in the world today.
Two forms of slavery that are very common, but are hidden from society’s everyday knowledge are debt bondage and human trafficking. Debt bondage is the most common form of slavery in the world today. According to Hans van de Glind, debt bondage arises when a person who needs a loan offers an unspecified amount of time to their laborer as safety over that loan. This type of debt can be passed down from generation to generation due to ridiculous interest rates placed by the laborer. Since the slaves receive such low wages that cannot match their living costs it is impossible for most of them to pay off their debt. An example of a debt bondage system is in Uttar Pradesh, India where 500,000 slaves break rock into sand each day. With this usage of labor, “the slave owner is able to maximize his profits in some cases upwards of fifty percent” (Reitz 15). Human trafficking is where humans are exploited and turned into materialistic commodities for an economic gain. More specifically in regards to children, “boys are typically trafficked for labor relating to commercial farming, the drug trade and other illicit activities, whilst trafficking of girls often relates to domestic service or sexual exploitation” (Glind & Kooijmans 158). The number of slaves plus the ability to reuse them constantly allows for major profit ranges for these human traffickers. The majority of human trafficking occurs in major cities due to the economic vulnerability of families who are willing to sell off their children.
Two other prevalent forms of slavery in today’s world that exploit people daily are child labor and...

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