This project aims to heighten awareness regarding the horrors of the transatlantic slave trade and stimulate discussion about how slavery had affected not only the African-American Culture, but also the cultures of other ethnicities. Seeking to break down current stereotypes that stem from popular beliefs that originated during this time period, the Tortured Souls exhibit will also foster intelligent dialogue between races regarding knowledge, perspectives, and awareness of the Middle Passage and the experience of slaves during their journey.
Depicting an exact replica of the middle decks from the slave-ship Zong, the Tortured Souls exhibit will be built to scale and incorporate all of the sounds and smells from that period, conveying a true representation of the conditions Zong’s captive passengers endured. The project will include digital media comprised of key information on economic, health, law, and public policies during this time period that still shape institutions, practices, personal belief systems, perceptions, and attitudes, present in society today. Additional programming will include a series of lectures and discussion groups aimed at engaging the community in creating bridges and paving the way to improved racial tolerance and relations.