The Abolition of British Slavery – Interactive Map

The BBC have quite good resources, and I remember using their website when I was in school.

How do I update this? How do I develop this?

I need to answer this in my project. What I do know is that my audience don’t expect to be patronised, and are quite sophisticated when it comes to their visual media preferences. When you consider the video games, websites, and mobile technology that they are accustomed to, you can see that 11-16 year olds are quite advanced, and are more complex in their thinking than they are credited. I remember when I was in school thinking I knew more than the teachers, and feeling patronised by them, so I have no doubt that school kids can be strong-minded and capable of forming their own opinions.


Human Trafficking in the World

This map shows government action to combat human trafficking and modern slavery in 177 countries with Tier 1 ranking as the highest ranking. A Tier 1 indicates that a state government has recognized the problem of human trafficking, has made efforts to address the issue, and meets the Trafficking Victims Protection Act’s (TVPA) minimum standards. A country with a Tier 2 rating has not met the standards but has made efforts to do so, while a Tier 3 rating means the country has not met the minimum standards and has not attempted to do so.

What is Human Trafficking?

According to United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime: Human Trafficking defines Trafficking in Persons as the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of persons, by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation. Exploitation shall include, at a minimum, the exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labour or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude or the removal of organs, forced recruitment for child soldiers.

Major forms of human trafficking include: forced labor, sex trafficking, bonded labor, debt bondage among migrant laborers, involuntary domestic servitude, forced child labor, child soldiers, child sex trafficking.

How is Human Trafficking Tier placement is calculated?

The Department of State, United States of America prepared this report using information from U.S. embassies, government officials, NGOs and international organizations, published reports, research trips to every region, and information submitted to tipreport [at]

U.S. diplomatic posts and domestic agencies reported on the trafficking situation and governmental action based on thorough research that included meetings with a wide variety of government officials, local and international NGO representatives, officials of international organizations, journalists, academics, and survivors. Every U.S. mission overseas employs at least one officer covering human trafficking issues.

The Department places each country in one of three tiers as mandated by the Trafficking Victims Protection Act’s (TVPA). This placement is based more on the extent of government action to combat trafficking than on the size of the problem, although the latter is also an important factor. The analyses are based on the extent of governments’ efforts to reach compliance with the TVPA’s minimum standards for the elimination of human trafficking.

Tier Placement as follows:

  • TIER 1: Countries whose governments fully comply with the TVPA minimum standards.
  • TIER 2: Countries whose governments do not fully comply with the TVPA’s minimum standards, but are making significant efforts to bring themselves into compliance with those standards.
  • TIER 2 WATCH LIST: Same as TIER 2, but: the absolute number of victims of severe forms of trafficking is very significant or is significantly increasing; also there is a failure to provide evidence of increasing efforts to combat severe forms of trafficking in persons from the previous year; or, the determination that a country is making significant efforts to bring themselves into compliance with minimum standards was based on commitments by the country to take additional future steps over the next year.
  • TIER 3: Countries whose governments do not fully comply with the minimum standards and are not making significant efforts to do so.


*This subject area is very interesting for me as I had no real idea of it before. It’s something I want to explore further and find out more about. I will try to attend the Anti-Slavery Walk 2nd Dec, for further research:

* also allow users to create their own maps which is something I’ll have a go at.

WAC Interactive Art Activity

This art activity is the first in a series of informative and fun interactive explorations of works in the Walker’s permanent collection. Click above to go to an activity inspired by Lorna Simpson’s Wigs, a work that investigates issues of identity. A link to further information about Wigs can be found to the left.

This online project illustrates some of Lorna Simpson’s ideas interactively and gives me ideas for my own work. I would be interested in doing something like this, and definitely embraced ideas of interactivity more than participation culture.

For the past decade, Lorna Simpson’s work has explored the role of hair as a marker of social identity. The 21 lithographic images in Wigs provide a taxonomy of hairstyles signifying gender, age, and race. The felt surfaces on which these images are printed present all of the hairstyles in the same texture, emphasizing and skewing our fixation on hair texture as markers of difference. By reminding us that wigs are hair that is unattached to a body, Simpson exposes hairstyle as an alterable or removable embellishment that may distort our understanding of what is natural or desirable in the human body.

Roshini Kempadoo: Virtual Exiles

Roshini Kempadoo’s digital images and Internet site ‘Virtual Exiles,’ explores the experiences of individuals who have left their country of origin and who are now at ‘home’ in another. The reason and experience of having left a homeland always varies, but what doesn’t is the relation to the host country – those having migrated are nearly always considered to be an ‘outsiders’ or ‘foreigners’. The work was created by Kempadoo while investigating her own status as refugee/exile/expatriate/emigre in relation to her own country of birth England and her country of origin and upbringing, Guyana.

The interactive website was an ongoing curated internet show where individuals and groups are encouraged to contribute their own artwork. Whether it is a sound, video or a multimedia piece or a series of images or text, the person is invited to contribute their own experience of being ‘settled’ and ‘rooted’ within one culture and yet having a deep sense of belonging with another. Such contributions alongside Kempadoo’s own work are then contextualised and presented as four separate portfolios, each of which focuses on particular aspects of the ‘exiled’ experience.

Looking at Kempadoo’s work gives me a good insight into how themes surrounding belonging, rootedness and identity can be represented using new media technology. I particularly like the participatory aspect, and ideas of space and place. I think notions of space are particularly important when speaking about globalisation and virtual space.

Kempadoo’s work also makes me think about the end presentation of the work, whether it should be presented as an art piece? The project could take on a research form in this respect, aggregating different sources and displayed to an audience as an exhibition.

The above article contains information on Roshini Kempadoo and also the ‘Virtual Exiles’ project. I have selected a few extracts from the website that seem useful for my research at the moment:

‘Her work is very significant because it highlights the cultural mix of the Caribbean often lost in translation to the UK. Her work is trying to restore the complexities of Caribbean history through sometimes an autobiographical investigation. What is very provocative about her work is that it offers us a complex set of relationships that we as audience not only enjoy unpicking because it is full of diffuse humour but also because it recognises complex relationships between the present and the colonial period of British expansion’.

Sunil Gupta, OVA London 2004

I really want to explore these complexities in my work in relation to racial identity. I should note the complexities in translating these experiences, and question which method will best allow this discussion to be understood. Regarding this then, the audience play a crucial part in the work. I also like the autobiographical element, which is something I want to do in exploring my own identity. Perhaps I could do this in relation to other people.

Conceived as an ever-changing work-in-progress ‘Virtual Exiles’ begins with the narratives of people whose origins are in Guyana.

The aspect of the work forever changing is quite crucial, and links into my ideas of racial identity being changeable and all the more complicated due to this.

Matt Locke writes, ‘Roshini Kampadoo’s ‘Virtual Exiles’ is an ambitious attempt to create a forum for a number of issues that have been central to her work – identity as refracted through labels such as refugee, exile, expatriate and emigre; photography as taxonomic tool or emotional record; and the infrastructures of commerce, colonisation and globalization that replicate themselves in the technologies used to construct her work.

I definitely think in some ways, I am trying to create a forum around my work, in that my aims are for such issues to be discussed, challenged and experimented.

An accompanying website ( was presented by Kempadoo as ‘a collective way of telling stories, of digitally contributing our own version of what it means to step between two spaces at once’. Locke comments that ‘the possibilities for embedding many narratives within the non-linear space of a website makes it, perhaps, a more apt location for the project than a gallery exhibition. The web is regarded as a space where notions of identity can be infinitely mutable, and where community is the only organisational factor, themes which are central to ‘Virtual Exiles’. …

Again, the notion of collectiveness and participation seems central to producing work of this style. I feel that the work is stronger also in that it has a collective story and not simply the experiences of one person alone. You then begin to find recurring themes in experiences, as well as identifying differences also. I also like the notion of existing in two spaces at once, and see parallels here with existing both online and offline, and the way the two interact.

The work does not attempt to recreate a taxonomic archive but to present narrative spaces that reveal themselves through a series of breaks and ruptures – rollover images, scrolling shockwave texts and hidden links that require more persistence than the usual navigation tools.

I also need to think further about the form of the work, what type of experience do I want to create for the audience and why?