27. Parts and Labor

  1. Ato Quayson and
  2. Girish Daswani
  1. Monir Moniruzzaman

Published Online: 25 JUN 2013

DOI: 10.1002/9781118320792.ch27

A Companion to Diaspora and Transnationalism

A Companion to Diaspora and Transnationalism

How to Cite

Moniruzzaman, M. (2013) Parts and Labor, in A Companion to Diaspora and Transnationalism (eds A. Quayson and G. Daswani), Blackwell Publishing Ltd, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781118320792.ch27

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 25 JUN 2013
  2. Published Print: 3 SEP 2013

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781405188265

Online ISBN: 9781118320792



  • organ trafficking;
  • kidney seller;
  • structural violence;
  • social suffering;
  • Bangladesh


While the human body has long been materialized for commercial exploitation (e.g., in slavery and prostitution), a novel form of bodily exploitation has emerged thanks to techno-medical advancement. This chapter examines a recent form of such exploitation under which impoverished populations becomes merely sites for organ harvesting. Based on year-long fieldwork in the underground organ market of Bangladesh, this chapter illustrates how the poor are tricked, manipulated, and even coerced into selling their vital organs while they are still alive. These organ sellers mostly travel to India with falsified papers and undergo high-risk surgeries for financial reward, but in the end, they are brutally deceived and their suffering is extreme. In the post-vending period, the health, economic, and social condition of the sellers interviewed significantly deteriorated, yet none of them received either the promised medical aftercare or full payment for their “donation.” This chapter concludes that organ commodification constitutes serious violence against the poor, generates extreme suffering for them, and violates longstanding cultural practices about the human body.