IAIN MACLEAN

 

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Here are my mutterings and musings mainly on art.

Human Cargo 3 - work in progress

By themaclean, May 16 2016 09:17AM


This sculpture, number three in the series, is also based on the Brookes slave ship diagram.


The ship was built in Liverpool in the 1780s and carried over 600 enslaved Africans on two Atlantic crossings in 1783.


The diagram showed how men, women, and children were packed into the hold for the six-to-eight week journey.


The Brookes was allowed to stow 454 African slaves, by allowing a space of 6 feet (1.8 m) by 1 foot 4 inches (0.41 m) to each man; 5 feet 10 inches (1.78 m) by 1 foot 4 inches (0.41 m) to each women, and 5 feet (1.5 m) by 1 foot 2 inches (0.36 m) to each child.


Each person could neither sit up fully nor stand.


The diagram was commissioned by Thomas Clarkson from the abolitionist publisher James Phillips in 1788, and the Committee of the Abolition of Slavery used it to inform and shock the public.

Over 7000 posters of the plan were printed and distributed to promote the abolition campaign.


It worked. Victorian churchgoers were outraged and pressurized the government to put a stop to the vile trade.


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