Current Institutional Affiliation
Assistant Professor, Women, Gender & Sexuality Studies, University of Kansas

Award Information

International Dissertation Research Fellowship 2010
Institutional Affiliation (at time of award):
Anthropology, Brown University
Victimizing Migrants?: Human Trafficking and Migration Management in Nigeria

This study explores the interconnections between migration and human trafficking, including the ways the two phenomena are constructed as humanitarian problems, regulated by states concerned about their consequences, and experienced by the people who move. To examine these issues, I will spend twelve months conducting ethnographic fieldwork at a shelter for returned trafficking victims run by Nigeria’s counter-trafficking agency. First I will study the content of rehabilitation programs, vocational training, and prevention efforts through participant observation, interviews, and textual analysis. Next, I will use participant observation, interviews and creative writing exercises to examine how women identified as human trafficking victims understand, experience, and navigate these programs. Finally, I will trace the connections between these everyday practices and larger state policies, through interviews with key informants from the Nigerian government, collaborating NGOs, and bilateral sponsor institutions. This data will provide a unique perspective on how migration may be managed by a migrant-sending state like Nigeria, as well as how individual migrants navigate those policies amid other risks of abuse and coercion.