Claims to Protection: The Rise and Fall of Feminist Abolitionism in the League of Nations' Committee on the Traffic in Women and Children, 1919–1936?

This article examines the League of Nations Advisory Committee on the Trafficking of Women and Children (CTW) to assess the impact of international feminists on the interwar anti-sex trafficking movement. It argues that women who were firmly embedded in the transnational and international women's rights movement built a coalition on the CTW to ensure the prominence of the feminist abolitionist position of sex trafficking in the 1920s. This position was defined by calls for equal standards of morality between the sexes, resistance to laws that treated prostitutes as a group and infringed on their human rights, and unwavering demands for the abolition of state-regulated prostitution. Changes in the personnel and bureaucratic structure of the CTW and the rising tide of nationalism served to undermine the feminist abolitionists' position in the League in the 1930s

Year of publication: 
2010
Author: 
Jessica R. Pliley