Emancipating “The Unfortunates”: The Anti-slavery Society, the United States, the United Nations, and the Decades-Long Fight to Abolish the Saudi Arabian Slave Trade
This dissertation examines the transnational efforts to abolish slavery in Saudi Arabia after 1945. The British Anti-Slavery Society spearheaded this global campaign and sought allies from Cairo to Cleveland. The Society’s major platform for publicity was the United Nations, and from there, they sought “effective enforcement” of UN resolutions that had only in name abolished slavery. However, the Society’s endeavors were stymied by the recalcitrance of the British and United States governments throughout the early Cold War period. Yet, when John F. Kennedy entered the White House in 1961, the Society finally had a Western ally to support their activism. Kennedy’s strengthening of the United Nations and his administration's ability to leverage military assistance for modernization and reform throughout the Kingdom pushed the Saudis to abolish slavery in 1962. This work contributes to three key areas of research: enslavement studies, US–Saudi relations, and human rights.
American history|Middle Eastern history
DeAntonis, Nicholas J, "Emancipating “The Unfortunates”: The Anti-slavery Society, the United States, the United Nations, and the Decades-Long Fight to Abolish the Saudi Arabian Slave Trade" (2021). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI28499257.