Human trafficking and Semplica Girls

One aspect of human trafficking that isn’t known enough is that often times it goes unnoticed. In the case of the novel The Semplica Girl Diaries, the human ornaments called Semplica Girls are common, with nearly every single house in the narrator’s neighborhood having them. Semplica Girls are from impoverished foreign countries like the Philippines or Moldova, who sign a contract in order to become a human decorations. What can be said about human trafficking, whether that be for forced labor or organ harvesting, is that the victims are often from impoverished backgrounds, as those people are easier to exploit. Another aspect that ties the Semplica Girls into human trafficking is that towards the end of the novel, the detective mentions that activists cause the city a problem because they frequently interfere with the Semplica Girls by freeing them. If the Semplica Girls really enjoyed their job or were Seplica Girls voluntarily, why would they object to being free? Wouldn’t they fight back, or take another action to ensure that they would keep their job? It’s clear that since they willingly leave once freed, they are trapped in a job that they don’t want to be in. 

Furthermore, the narrator is careful to explain to Eva that the Semplica Girls aren’t actually being exploited, they choose their jobs and would have a worse situation otherwise. By showing the tragic nature of the backgrounds of the Semplica Girls, the narrator only further illustrates that the Semplica Girls are coerced into their job, that the people who run the company seek out vulnerable females for a cruel industry. With the combined exploitation of vulnerable females and the caging nature of the job, it is evident that Semplica Girls serve as a commentary on the pervasiveness of human trafficking

3 thoughts on “Human trafficking and Semplica Girls

  1. Olivia L

    This is really interesting, I hadn’t even connected the fact that it could be about human trafficking. You articulated the fact very clearly!



    This is a really great and interesting take that I think is almost easy to overlook. The little notes about the Semplica Girls being from foreign countries really adds another level to their exploitation I hadn’t noticed before.


  3. Bella M.

    You make a good point! I think that’s one of the main topics of Semplica Girls, especially with how the narrator finds the SGs normal, which can be true for some communities in the real world who are aware of trafficking but don’t really do anything. Not to mention the subtle blame deflecting the narrator does when he starts to think about the reality of the SGs, by saying things like “they chose to be here” or “its better than where they could have been/where”.


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