In this session, Dr. Gail Dines and Dr. Holly Atkinson will explore how pornography drives prostitution and sex trafficking and how it alters the brain – affecting attitudes, behavior and even brain structure. Both agree that absent an understanding of the impact of pornography, anti-trafficking work will be limited in scope and success. Lori Cohen of Sanctuary for Families will serve as the Moderator.
Dr. Dines is Professor of Sociology and Women’s Studies at Wheelock College and has been researching and writing about pornography for over twenty years. Her latest book is Pornland: How Porn Has Hijacked Our Sexuality. Dr. Dines is the founder and chair of Culture Reframed, the first health promotion initiative to recognize pornography as “the public health crisis of the digital age.”
Dr. Atkinson has a broad background in human rights and is particularly interested in how human rights violations impact the health outcomes of women and girls. Dr. Atkinson is Director of the Human Rights Program at Arnhold Institute for Global Health at Mount Sinai; Co-Director of the Advancing Idealism in Medicine Program and an Assistant Professor of Medicine at the Icahn School of Medicine.
Lori Cohen is Director of the Anti-Trafficking Initiative at Sanctuary for Families where she represents victims of human trafficking and conducts training sessions for law enforcement, community organizations and legal, health care and social service providers. A graduate of Yale Law School, her work on behalf of trafficking victims has been reported widely in the media, including the BBC and the New York Times.