This is an important article that everyone should read. We can all boast of being allowed to go to the zoo. But it was not always so. Before the civil rights movements, there was a heavy racism being displayed on zoos. Zoos exhibited people as well, African and Native Americans who were gawked at as if they were animals, this dark part of American history is often forgotten but it shouldn’t. Here is the entire piece.
Through the 1950s, Africans and Native Americans Were Kept In Zoos As Exhibit
By M.B. David
Political Blindspot, February 13, 2013
Throughout the early 20th century, Germany held what was termed a, “Peoples Show,” or Völkerschau. Africans were brought in as carnival or zoo exhibits for passers-by to gawk at.
Brussels, Belgium in 1958
Only decades before, in the late 1800′s, Europe had been filled with, “human zoos,” in cities like Paris, Hamburg, Antwerp, Barcelona, London, Milan, and Warsaw. New York too saw these popular exhibits continue into the 20th century. There was an average of 200,000 to 300,000 visitors who attended each exhibition in each city.
Carl Hagenbeck of Germany ran exhibits of what he called, “purely natural,” populations, usually East Asian Islanders, but in 1876, he also sent a collaborator to the Sudan to bring back, “wild beasts and Nubians.” The traveling Nubian exhibit was a huge…
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