High Modernism of Human Trafficking: Ideological Criticism of Central Planners and their Impact on NGOs in Texas
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Human trafficking, the twenty-first century's modern-day slavery, is considered one of the fastest growing criminal industries in the world and a serious social problem that has caught the attention of governmental agencies, non-governmental organizations (NGO's) and academic scholars. It is the victims of human trafficking who are at the center of this ongoing debate of accurately identifying and countering human trafficking, and yet victims' voices struggle to gain a platform in human trafficking legislation. This thesis explores the gaps in the current trafficking agenda in Texas as it bears the weight of the government's central planners, as they engineer a vision of prosecution, prevention, and protection and translate them from a global to a state level and seeks to offer an explanation for the persistence of these gaps in victim's advocacy and services. To address the challenges of human trafficking in Texas, a macro analysis of James Scott's "high modernism" and Michael Foucault's concepts in discipline as a means for a state to use social systems to regulate legibility create the framework for why government subsequently allow for unintended consequences and their effect on individuals. In the case of human trafficking, legislation has led to the delicate relationship between NGO's and law enforcement agencies.