While you’re here… help us stay here.

Are you enjoying open access to policy and research published by a broad range of organisations? Please donate today so that we can continue to provide this service.

Attachment Size
apo-nid57417.pdf 2.13 MB


To provide insight into the reality of forced marriage in Australia today, this case book is based on lived experiences of people involved in cases brought to our attention in the course of research and advocacy on forced and servile marriage. In fact, cases informing this work connected to many dozens of countries in the Americas, Asia, Africa and Europe as well as New Zealand and Australia.  All cases have been edited to preserve the privacy and anonymity of those involved or who observed the case unfold, and to that end all are intentionally composed of elements from multiples cases.


Equally, the cases included here are deliberately cast as neutral in terms of culture, ethnithcity, religion, country of origin and/or other social reference points. The simple reason is that this truly represents the nature of forced marriage. Almost identical cases have been observed or related from multiple, highly diverse contexts. Accordingly, this socially featureless presentation is an authentic approach which accurately portrays the most salient feature of forced marriage – that it transcends such boundaries and ought never be discounted as a possibility in any case, most particularly on the grounds of the supposedly “known” incidence of forced or servile marriage in any given context.

Cases are laid out in a four page format to facilitate their use as stand alone printable resources. Each case is presented in a standard structure to support their complementary use where appropriate. For handouts to use in a group discussion, the selected case(s) may be printed as a leaflet of the four pages to provide participants with a self-contained tool for the session and then a take away for later use.

Similarly, the ‘Resource Material’ section is set out in a four page format that can be printed as a takeaway reference for later reference.
In terms of the content of each case:

  • A narrative provides the stimulus material for discussion, some styled in the first person of the potential/actual victim, some from the perspective of another party. A combination is useful in developing understanding of the layered nature of disclosure/discovery of forced marriage cases.
  • Each narrative is followed by a standard set of questions that are designed to prompt individual thinking and draw out the different dimensions found in the risk or reality of forced marriage. They also structure a small group discussion or larger group debrief.
  • The four page layout is completed by a notes page for convenience of users.

Finally, the ‘Discussion Guide’ section includes a synopsis of the case set to assist in contrasting cases and case selection for discussion, along with model answers to the standard questions for each case to assist the discussion leader. These are not intended to be exhaustive but to tap the key issues and, used in tandem, show important points of departure in how cases unfold.

Further input on development of these responses over time would be particularly welcome from those making use of this case book.


This case book was developed as part of the Forced & Servile Marriage Research Project at Rosemount Good Shepherd Youth & Family Services in Sydney, Australia.

The primary work was completed by the Research Project Officer, Carolyn Evans CSC MLS MBA Grad Dip OR BBus (Dist).

Enquiries about this case book can be directed to Rosemount by email at reception@rosemountgs.org.au.

Publication Details
Access Rights Type: