Brooklyn Street Art

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Elephant0907: Child Labor Stencil and Layers of Significance

Posted on March 7, 2018

Chinese Street Artist Elephant 0907 has sent us his latest work that he says addresses child labor in the 1880s. In fact many children were working at factories across the Western World during the Industrial Revolution, resulting in many injuries and death of children, aside from the hazardous and sometimes cruel conditions that they worked under.

0907. Child Labor in the 1880’s. China. (photo © 0907)

It’s an odd piece of history that is remembered in the US because, depending on where you hear it, you might have thought that it was the only cruelty to children taking place at the time. For indentured servants brought to the US and forced to repay their trip through years of labor, the hardships were recorded as well. For slaves and children of slaves whose labor was forced, the story was an ongoing horror.

0907. Child Labor in the 1880’s. China. (photo © 0907)

If only slavery had been abolished and we could speak about it comfortably in the past. There have been documented factories throughout the world that are basically labor camps. Today in 2018, according to the International Labour Organisation (ILO) more than 40 million people worldwide are victims of modern slavery.

Although modern slavery is not defined in law, it is used as an umbrella term covering practices such as forced labor, debt bondage, forced marriage, and human trafficking. The United Nations says that there are 5.4 victims of modern slavery for every 1,000 people in the world.

0907. Child Labor in the 1880’s. China. (photo © 0907)

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