Abstract Violence against women is an issue around the world. There are two significant threats that are discussed in the following paper; sex trafficking and gender biased violence. Although gender biased violence has many matters within itself, the two elaborated on are honor killings/rapes and female genitalia mutilation. Sex trafficking is one of the largest criminal circulations in the world today, and is a lifestyle women are often forced to live. Honor Killings are unheard of in much of the world, but are very common in Muslim cultures; these take the lives of many women each year under the pretense that they have disgraced their family or community. Female genital mutilation is an unsafe procedure used mainly in African cultures, in an attempt to ride women of their sexuality. Each of these causes many psychological and physical consequences to the women who endure them.
Violence Against Women
Violence against women is a universal phenomenon; rates of women experiencing physical violence at least once in their lifetime vary from several percent to over 59 percent depending on where they live. Two of the largest threats to women, especially those in developing or poverty ridden countries, is sex trafficking and gender biased violence. Sex trafficking is the fastest growing and second largest criminal industry in the world today (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2011). The general topic of gender biased violence contains countless issues, two of which I will be elaborating on; honor killings/rapes and female genital mutilation.
Sex Trafficking is defined as the illegal trade of human beings for the purposes of commercial sexual exploitation. Human trafficking commonly leads to forced prostitution and considered a modern day form of slavery. The amount of women and girls who are impacted by sex trafficking is difficult to estimate for a few reasons. Separating sex workers into those who voluntarily work and those who involuntarily work is very hard to do. Another reason is that it is hard to account for the numerous under aged girls who are hidden in many brothels around the world. It has been conservatively estimated that there are currently three million women and girls involved in sex trafficking. The United States Department’s approximation is much lower, estimating between 600,000 and 800,000 people who are trafficked across international borders each year (Lloyd, 2011). The United States estimate does not take into account the numerous women who are trafficked within their own national borders. With either statistic, there are more women and girls being trafficked for sexual use annually in the 21st century, than there ever were African American slaves that were sold for slavery in the 18th Century (Llloyd, 2011). Brothels, across many different cultures, are the most common place to find many of these women and girls who have been forced into sex trafficking. There are many physical and psychological issues that threaten these women on a daily basis.
Violence, both physical and sexual, is commonly associated with sex trafficking. These women are beaten or punished by the brothel owners for many reasons; such as resistance to the lifestyle, having an unhappy ‘client’, attempt to escape, or simply because they want to show dominance. The brothel owners make examples out of the ‘deviants’ by humiliating and beating them in front of the other workers. Many of these beatings can become very gruesome, leaving these women with body malfunctions, injuries, and can even end in death. Sexual violence is an everyday occurrence in sex trafficking, these women are seen as objects and are to be used for sexual pleasure. Many girls, who have barely hit puberty, are sold for their virginity and raped viciously, as a type of initiation before being given their own room in a brothel. In many Indian countries, men use the brothels as a way to rape