Graphic Novel Reveals Trauma, Hardships of One Man’s Life as a Modern Slave

It has been about nine years since Prum Vannak was rescued by a human rights organization but he said his memory of his time at sea is a wound that will never heal.

After escaping from modern slavery on a Malaysian fishing vessel and in a palm oil plantation in 2010, Prum Vannak, an artist from Battambang province, has published a graphic memoir of his experiences as a victim of human trafficking.

Vannak partnered with Australian film director and co-author Jocelyn Pederick to tell the story of “The Dead Eye and the Deep Blue Sea”, which was published by Seven Stories Press in June 2018.

The book follows Vannak’s journey from crossing the Thai border illegally seeking work to being kidnapped, tricked, and sold into forced labor and involuntary servitude. The book also serves as a warning to Cambodians and the rest of the world that neo-slavery on the sea exists.

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