12 Historical Statues That Will Restore Your Faith in Humanity
Who said protesting doesn't solve problems? In the wake of global antiracism marches against police brutality, activists are dismantling systemic racism with their bare hands, by removing statues of slavers from being memorialised in public spaces. In response to this monumental win for the people, British historian James Barr asked Twitter to "name a statue that actually enhances its surroundings" — the responses restored our faith in humanity.
The original tweet by Barr on Wednesday, 10 June received over 23,000, and has more recently become a viral meme on Instagram. Some of our favourite responses include: "La Mulâtresse Solitude", a statue of a pregnant woman to represent the fight against slavery in Guadeloupe; "The Woman with the Handbag", a statue of a Jewish-Polish woman hitting a neo-Nazi over the head with her handbag; "Dignity" a statue of an indigenous American woman receiving a star quilt; and "The Shoe" monument that honours the Iraqi journalist Muntazer al-Zaidi who threw his shoe at US president George Bush.
Ahead, the histories of 12 incredible statues that are positive and educational reminders of our shared humanity.