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Mgbakoigba: Journal of African Studies

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“Girl-Child” Trafficking and Sex Slavery in African Fiction: An Analysis of Akachi Adimorah-Ezeigbo’s Trafficked

Ifeoma Ezinne Odinye

Abstract


Sexual exploitation of the girl-child for commercial purposes is both a domestic and international problem. Human trafficking and sex slavery require serious attention because they affect the physical and mental health of their victims. This paper explores the psychological impacts of sex slavery and human trafficking on the “girl-child” in Akachi Adimorah-Ezeigbo's Trafficked. The selected novel clearly depicts the after-effects and negative consequences of trafficking and sexual exploitation. This research aims at exposing and creating awareness on the consequences of human trafficking and sex slavery on the girl-child as modern forms of slavery. In order to achieve this, the researcher employs the Trauma theory to depict the pain and agony associated with trafficking and forced sexual activities. However, it is discovered that both domestic and international trafficking of girls for commercial sex works have psychological or emotional implications which impinge on their growth, health and general well-being. The victims are oftentimes seen as social misfits and outcasts of the society; hence, this affects them psychologically or emotionally since people do not want to associate with individuals that have been trafficked and sexually exploited. In essence, strong negative stereotype is attached to victims who are viewed as a disgrace to their family and country. It is also important to note that the term “girl-child” as used in this paper refers to girls who are still under the guidance of an adult and not above 18 years. Hence, characters especially girls are discussed here because, they are particularly vulnerable to certain human rights violations, and therefore require additional protection.

Keywords: Sex Slavery, Human Trafficking, Trauma Theory, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder




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