School of Politics and International Relations

Understanding the Relationship between Forced Marriage and Modern Slavery


Funder: Arts and Humanities Research Council
Principal investigator: Dr Helen McCabe
Duration: January 2020 - December 2021

Forced marriage and slavery have recently been linked on the national and international stage, this includes the International Labour Organisation (ILO) including forced marriage in its Global Estimates of Slavery, and forced marriage being recognised as a form of sexual slavery at the International Criminal Court.

Dr McCabe's project is the first of its kind to explore why certain types of marriage should be seen as forms of modern slavery, by asking:

  1. To what extent, if any, is forced marriage a form of modern slavery?
  2. Does forced marriage as currently defined in law really reflect how things are?
  3. What types of marriage, ought to be seen as forms of modern slavery?

The project will draw on the work of past philosophers' views of how marriage constitutes a form of slavery, gather current legal definitions of forced marriage and explore existing survivor narratives regarding forced marriage and slavery.

This two year project starting in January 2020 is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council as an Early Careers Leadership Fellowship. Dr McCabe is part of the Law and Policy Programme at the Rights Lab, a University of Nottingham Beacon of Research Excellence.

Dr Helen McCabe gives an overview of her project 

School of Politics and International Relations

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University of Nottingham
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