Thursday, June 9, 2011

Go On! Exit Art: Human Trafficking

Exit Art, a New York City art gallery, is bringing together artists, academics and journalists on the common theme of trafficking in human beings.
The gallery, located at 475 Tenth Ave (between 36th and 37th Streets), hosts of full day of panels on this Saturday, June 11 from 10am-6pm, with a reception to follow. The panels include:
  • The Long Chain of Slavery from Plantation to Prison from 10:30am - 12:30pm (Moderator: Eddie Ellis; Panelists: Gloria Browne-Marshall, Scott Christianson, Joanna Weschler)
  • The Slave Next Door: Local and Global Labor from 1:30-3:30pm (Moderator: Ron Soodalter; Panelists: John Bowe, Benedetta Rossi, Barbara Young)
  • Trafficking, Sex Workers, Migration and Slavery from 4:00-6:00pm (Moderator: Tiantian Zheng; Panelists: Jennifer MacFarlane, Norma Ramos, and this intlawgrl Dina Francesca Haynes)
Symposium developer, Mary Anne Staniszewski, states:
In the past thirty years, due to globalization, new media technologies, and shifts in social, financial, and political patterns, there has been a recognition and resurgence of a wide range of human rights abuses commonly known as "slaveries." From traditional forms of lifelong servitude to forced labor in the sex, prison, farming, and domestic workers industries, as well as debt bondage, slavery persists internationally both in ancient and modern forms. This symposium is intended to bring together diverse communities, controversies, and conversations to address these varied but related concerns.
Not all slaveries were abolished in the United States in 1865 with the enactment of the thirteenth amendment. One type remains sanctioned by the state, which is "punishment for crime." The first panel, "The Long Chain of Slavery from Plantation to Prison," will examine the legacy and contemporary guises of slavery in relation to prisons in the United States and abroad. The second panel, “The Slave Next Door: Local and Global Labor,” will investigate current forms of what are more commonly understood as traditional slavery. These can be hidden, as is often the case with domestic workers, or in plain sight, as seen with many restaurant workers, or in contexts where such servitude has been accepted as traditional custom and law. The third panel, "Trafficking, Sex Workers, Migration, and Slavery," will deal with types of "slavery" that have perhaps received the most attention in the United States and internationally: forced labor and trafficked persons in the sex industry.
The increase in--and/or visibility of--these disparate forms of human suffering and exploitation are linked to some of the following often intertwined factors: a rise in international migration; more powerful corporate globalization; inequitable redistribution of wealth; conflicts within and among states; changes in criminal justice and prison labor policies; racial, gender-based, and other forms of discrimination; and new media technologies. This symposium is intended to ignite and inspire new creative possibilities, ideas, and strategies for understanding and dealing with one of the distinguishing features of our time: “our slaveries."

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