Critical and Empirical Approaches to Human Trafficking

Event Organizers

Stacey VanderhurstStacey Vanderhurst is a cultural anthropologist specializing in gender, migration, and governance. She earned a Ph.D. from Brown University and served as the Jerome Hall Postdoctoral Fellow with the Center for Law, Culture, and Society at Indiana University’s Michael Maurer School of Law before joining the WGSS faculty in Fall 2015.


Akiko TakeyamaAkiko Takeyama is an associate professor of Anthropology and Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at the University of Kansas. Her research and teaching interests lie in changing gender, sexuality, and class dynamics in the context of neoliberal globalization. Her first book, Staged Seduction: Selling Dreams in a Tokyo Host Club (2016 Stanford University Press), theorizes the commercialization of feelings, emotions, and intimate relationships among socially marginalized population —the youth and the female— in contemporary Japan’s service-centered economy. 


Christie HollandChristie Holland is a Research Project Specialist at the Institute for Policy & Social Research, providing administrative support for research team, IPSR Center Directors, and research staff. This includes organization of workshops, conferences, and other events. Christie manages the Heartland Project, supports the Center for the Study of Injustice, and also has volunteered for KU’s Sexual Assault Prevention & Education Center as a Bringing in the Bystander facilitator.


Brian DonovanBrian Donovan is a cultural and historical sociologist; his work focuses on the role of law and culture in shaping social inequality. His book White Slave Crusades: Race, Gender and Anti-Vice Activism, 1887-1917 (University of Illinois Press, 2006) analyzes the gender and racial politics of early twentieth century anti-trafficking organizations. In Respectability on Trial: Sex Crimes in New York City, 1900-1919 (SUNY Press, 2016), Donovan examines conflicting notions of gender and respectability in Progressive Era sex crime trials. Brian has won two university-wide distinguished teaching awards: the Silver Anniversary Award for Excellence in Teaching (2007) and the Gene A. Budig Teaching Professorship Award (2016). Areas: Cultural Sociology, Comparative/Historical Sociology, Gender and Sexuality, and Sociology of Law.


Rachel DenneyRachel Denney is a Ph.D. candidate in Women, Gender, & Sexuality Studies, with concentrations in Political Science and Latin American and Caribbean Studies. Her dissertation research focuses on the relationship between developing state governments and non-governmental organizations in Central America and the Caribbean. From Fall 2013-Spring 2015, Rachel was a Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellow, studying Haitian Creole. Since Fall 2015, she has served as a Graduate Teaching Assistant in the WGSS department. She was an Institute for Policy and Social Research Fellow in 2015-2016. Rachel has a professional background in the international non-profit sector.


Sarah DeerSarah Deer (Muscogee (Creek) Nation) has worked to end violence against women for over 25 years and was named a MacArthur Fellow in 2014. Her scholarship focuses on the intersection of federal Indian law and victims' rights. Prof. Deer is a co-author of four textbooks on tribal law. Her latest book is The Beginning and End of Rape: Confronting Sexual Violence in Native America, which has received several awards. Her work on violence against Native women has received national recognition from the American Bar Association and the Department of Justice. Professor Deer is also the Chief Justice for the Prairie Island Indian Community Court of Appeals.


Hannah BrittonHannah Britton is an associate professor in the departments of political science and women, gender, and sexuality studies. Britton's scholarship focuses on women and politics, gender and African politics, the prevention of gender-based violence, and human trafficking. Britton is also the Director of the Center for the Study of Injustice at the Institute of Policy & Social Research at the University of Kansas. In this role, she coordinates KU's Anti-Slavery and Human Trafficking Initiative (ASHTI), which is a working group of faculty and students engaged in teaching and research about slavery, labor exploitation, and commercial sexual exploitation. She is the lead researcher on a project in the Midwest examining the factors that may leave someone vulnerable to exploitation. Hannah also coordinates a working group of faculty and graduate students using qualitative research methods in their teaching and scholarship.


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