Date of Award

Spring 1-1-2017

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Michael L. Radelet

Second Advisor

Tim Wadsworth

Third Advisor

Jason D. Boardman


Criminological scholarship on domestic human trafficking has yet to fully incorporate an intersectional praxis into its analysis. Thus far, the field of criminology has failed to investigate the dynamics of human trafficking and how they are influenced by the intersections of race, class/socioeconomic status, gender, and sexual orientation. Further, research on domestic human trafficking have few works that research traffickers. Traffickers, trafficking victims, and the sociopolitical structure of the United States are rarely examined with an intersectional lens. This paper will apply an intersectional criminological framework to evaluate human trafficking state court cases with a specific focus on traffickers and their relation to their victims. This paper will add to the criminological literature by providing a perspective on why traffickers exploit others and how this knowledge can be used to curb trafficking.